What's the future for the Greenman Senior Center?

By Jillian Marshall

November 18, 2013 Updated Nov 19, 2013 at 8:44 AM EST

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) The Greenman Senior Center has been vacant for two years. After failed attempts, Binghamton City Council said Monday they're ready to sell the building to the best bidder.

Three entities presented their ideas for the former senior center at 37 Pine St., during the council's work session.

"Whomever we decide to sell the building to, how much will that revitalize the neighborhood?" said Binghamton City Councilman Bill Berg. "Will it fit in? Will it be compatible with what the neighborhood has? Will it add to the downtown?"

Two of the bidders were out of town and called in.

The first to present was Angela Testani from California. She placed a bid of $138,500 to buy the building and lease it out to Opportunities for Broome. Testani and OFB want to use the space to start a program that trains people who are unemployed in the restaurant and food service industry. Testani says the Greenman Center is perfect for her plan because of the large kitchen.

OFB has bid on the building and failed four times.

The second and highest bid at $152,000 was submitted by Keith and Theresa Bovier. The couple wants to transform the building into a hub for prospective business and their own two businesses: A catering company and a coffee roasting company. They say they would like to hold events, like weddings, in the future.

"We really enjoy the building, it's something that kind of encompasses both my dreams and her dreams as well, and together I think it would just be a lot of fun to make that into a community place, a place that's really thriving," said Keith Bovier.

Lastly, was Jon Layish, who bid $140,000. Layish wants to use the building to house the Red Barn Technology Group. He said the business would use the space as its headquarters and offices, and potentially some retail space.

A major expense that remains is fixing the H-VAC system, which played a prominent role in why the center shut down in the first place.

The city engineer estimated it would cost between $100,000 and $150,000 to fix.

The Board of Estimates and Apportionment will meet on Wednesday to discuss the three bids.

City Council is hopeful they will accept a bid Wednesday night.

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