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therecord

Plan for Concord Exceeds Expectations

The Concord's owners have been meeting with town and county officials and engineers.

Barbara Gref
The Times Herald-Record
bgref@th-record.com
Feb 20, 2000

The main gate to the Concord Resort Hotel is partially plowed in. The one lane that's still open bears the timid tire tracks of a single vehicle trekking inward.

Across the snowy grounds, the two biggest tennis buildings are collapsed, victims of an earlier snowfall.

Much of the resort is slated for demolition.

The house next door, however, is buzzing.

A small fleet of SUVs and sedans is parked outside the office, phones are ringing inside, people are shouting questions about sewer. The community outside the massive resort is also beginning to buzz. An announcement about what will happen to what was once the biggest resort in Sullivan County is expected within days.

According to Tony Cellini, supervisor of the Town of Thompson where the Concord is located, the plan is pegged at several hundred million dollars, a larger figure than anyone had expected.

Louis R. Cappelli, the investor who bought the Concord last year, and many others from the Cappelli organization have met with town and county leaders and engineers many times over the last several weeks.

Cellini is cautiously optimistic about Cappelli Enterprises turning the plan into a reality .

"I think they have the financial wherewithal to pull this off," he said. The plan that's been shown to government agencies, including the Industrial Development Agency, would call for townhouses and other resort accommodations, more recreational opportunities than had been offered plus more access for the local public.

Cappelli also owns Grossingers. The firm has repeatedly said the redevelopment plan will go forward whether or not an Indian casino is approved for Monticello Raceway.

Employees inside the Cappelli offices on the Concord grounds said they could not answer specific questions and only acknowledged that they were getting ready to make plans public and move forward.

"We're excited about the prospect," Sullivan County Manager Jonathan Drapkin said yesterday. Drapkin has attended many meetings over the fate of the Concord. But like Cellini, he did not feel free to give details.

Cappelli Enterprises is also negotiating with Sullivan County to regain lands that were taken from the former owners when finances went sour.