Canandaigua Finger Lakes Resort developer expects to close on financing later in week

CANANDAIGUA — Could Monday be the day when work resumes on the stalled Canandaigua Finger Lakes Resort project on the lake?

If the financing paperwork falls in line — and developer Robert Murphy said he expects it to — closing could be done by the end of the week, clearing the way for work to resume.

“It’s coming,” Murphy said. “Right now, we’re going forward.”

The Ontario County Industrial Development Agency on Monday signed off on an authorizing resolution, a step toward the realization of 109 hotel rooms, 44 condos, restaurant and conference space that would replace the five-story shell nicknamed the “bird cage.”

Just over a year ago the project was in serious doubt, after a contractor had obtained a judgment of foreclosure and sale in 2017 and the property was to be auctioned off. Murphy and the contractor reached a deal on the $3.6 million owed early last year.

Canandaigua Mayor Ellen Polimeni said this is a project that people have been wondering about and worrying about, since work halted in July 2015.

That it appears to be moving forward is “wonderful” and will be of benefit to the city of Canandaigua in terms of hotel rooms and convention space, Polimeni said.

Murphy has estimated the resort will offer at least 85 full-time jobs.

“It’s time for something to happen there,” Polimeni said. “I’m looking forward to seeing some action there, and I think most of the community is too.”

Murphy has said that once construction resumes, work could be completed as soon as 13 months later. And, he said, a hotel will finally come to this site on Lakeshore Drive.

“We did what nobody else could do on that site,” Murphy said. “I’m going to feel pretty good about it.”