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Medina mayor, unopposed in today’s election, seeks to build on recent successes

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 20 March 2018 at 8:35 am

Photo by Tom Rivers: Medina Mayor Mike Sidari is pictured with elementary students during an Arbor Day celebration on April 29, 2016. The village has been planting about 60 to 80 trees each year for more than a decade.

MEDINA – Mike Sidari says it’s a good time to be Medina mayor with the downtown thriving, new businesses opening in the Medina Business Park and many residents committed to volunteering and improving the community.

Sidari is finishing his first two-year term as mayor and is unopposed in today’s election. He said years of groundwork are paying off with the revived downtown and businesses such as Pride Pak opening in the Medina Business Park. Takeform Architectural Graphics also is doing a big expansion and a new hotel, Cobblestone Suites, is expected to start construction this year on a 58-bed hotel.

The Orleans Economic Development Agency is marketing more land in Medina for businesses. The sites have access to infrastructure and the low-cost hydropower from Niagara Falls.

“There are a few projects coming up,” Sidari said. “The village is starting to make a comeback.”

Medina can’t sit idle and wait for the development. Sidari said the village will be doing a study of its sewer plant with assistance from the Orleans EDA.

“We will be looking at what we have now and where we need to be in the future,” Sidari said.

The village should look to increase sewer capacity to meet the demands of an anticipated buildout in the business parks, he said.

Sidari sees the downtown getting stronger with the renovation of the Bent’s Opera House into a restaurant, boutique hotel, and wedding venue with space for a market serving healthy options next door. Talis Equity and Roger Hungerford are driving that project. They are also planning to convert the former Medina High School into apartments.

Medina last year applied for a $10 million downtown grant from the state, but was denied with the funds going to Batavia. Sidari said village stakeholders are working on another application for the Downtown Revitalization Initiative. If Medina is approved for those funds, it would speed up more projects in the downtown and by the canal waterfront.

“We’re definitely applying for that again,” Sidari said.

He is retired from the Orleans Correctional Facility, a men’s prison in Albion where he was the food service administrator providing meals to 1,000 inmates. He oversaw 7 employees plus 80 inmate workers.

Sidari has been on the Village Board for four years, with the first two as a trustee and the past two as mayor.

“I’ve enjoyed it,” he said. “I’ve learned a lot and I’m still learning. Our goal is to make Medina better.”

Sidari is unopposed today along with Trustees Marguerite Sherman and Tim Elliott. The trio is running under “The Village Party.” Voting is from noon to 9 p.m. at the Senior Center, 615 West Ave.

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