Looking for tenants, Woolworth apartments host open house

Developer Michael Butler leads Pat Snyder, the East End Arts director, on a tour of the building during an open house Wendesday night. (Credit: Paul Squire)
Developer Michael Butler leads Pat Snyder, the East End Arts director, on a tour of the building during an open house Wendesday night. (Credit: Paul Squire)

Forty people have already put in applications for the 19 available apartment spaces in the newly-renovated former Woolworth building.

But developer Michael Butler said potential renters shouldn’t be discouraged; the building is set to take in its first tenants next year, he said, but it will still have openings. 

“We expect to have the people … move in in February, but we’ll still have apartments available for people doing an application,” he said.

The building, called Woolworth Apartments, held an open house Wednesday night, with another one planned for Thursday evening, from 4 to 7 p.m.

The long-vacant former Woolworth building was purchased a year and a half ago by Woolworth Revitalization LLC for over $2 million.

The interior of the building was gutted, Mr. Butler said (construction workers found dead animals inside). New drainage tanks were installed and a new roof was put in place.

“We’re pretty much now just putting on the finishing touches,” Mr. Butler said.

It’s difficult to see any sign of the original storage space in the clean hallways and polished countertops of the Woolworth building apartments. But there are some touches from the building’s original purpose, like designs along the stairwell to enter the complex.

The apartments themselves offer new energy-efficient refrigerators and dishwashers, a five-burner stove and oven, plenty of cabinet space and heating and air-conditioning units built into the walls. The apartments also feature a camera system to see who is buzzing into the building.

There are three styles of apartments available in the building: studios, one-bedroom and two-bedroom spaces. The apartments’ rents are based on income levels, with tenants having to pass an income verification process to ensure the affordable apartments go to the right income levels.

Woolworth’s apartments are located above the new Maximus Health & Fitness on East Main Street; despite a full gym below Wednesday evening, the halls upstairs remained quiet.

Construction manager Joe Koss the gym below was designed with “acoustic” tiles on its ceiling to reflect away sound. There’s then a 4-foot gap between the ceiling of the gym and the thick, seven-inch concrete base of the second floor.

“We’ve been going full-steam on the residential [space] for six months,” Mr. Koss said.

Mr. Butler said there was still some clean-up that needed to be done around the complex, like removing the protective wrapping from some of the doors of the appliances.

He said that some of those who have applied to rent in the building will not pass the income verification tests. He also said some of the 40 applicants are looking for specific spaces, adding that some will outright choose not to live there.

Mr. Butler said those who apply now would be placed on a first-come, first-serve basis. Those interested in applying can find more information at

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