Anticipation for economic growth continue to be shored up with progress at the Hawley Silk Mill. The hum of industry that characterized the textile legacy of the 130 year old structure is being to be heard again in a new capacity- that of education and high tech businesses underway.


Anticipation for economic growth continue to be shored up with progress at the Hawley Silk Mill. The hum of industry that characterized the textile legacy of the 130 year old structure is being to be heard again in a new capacity- that of education and high tech businesses underway.
An open house was held Friday, Jan. 21, to show off renovations to the second floor, where high-tech business and professional offices have begun to occupy space.
Mark Mitchell, who began on Nov. 1 as Facilities Manager, said he was eager to show people through and show off what they have accomplished and their vision for the future.
The second floor contains a large, open area (4,406 square feet) in the north half which he said is suited for a large tenant. This area has its own entrance and will have nearby parking. There is also a large, 962 square foot space available.
Law offices for Anthony Waldron and Steve Guccini have claimed a central office space on the second floor. Also present are Kelly Magee, Psychotherapist;  Chris Marshall Computer Consulting and LockData Technologies. Several more spaces are available.
Chuck Lockwood, CEO of LockData Technologies, commented that since relocating to the Silk Mill, they have been enjoying  good exposure and they are considering expanding their operations, taking additional floor space.
“It’s a great space for us,” said Lockwood. As a technology company dealing with innovative web development, web applications, design and “e-commerce,” he said it was fitting to be working around young people, who attend the college upstairs.  They have met students indirectly, at the Cocoon coffee shop across the driveway. That and being in the midst of a business hub has added to the atmosphere where LockData is now a part.
He said he encourages more businesses to join the Hawley Silk Mill.
On the third floor, Lackawanna College was in session, equipping students with skills needed for workforce development. The facility’s anchor tenant, the college takes up the entire floor. Mitchell pointed out that there is adequate room on the second floor for other educational  institutions, such as use by a four year college or a vo-tech school.
Retail space is envisioned on the first floor, entered right off the driveway, which was formerly Welwood Avenue. Miscellaneous Essentials has taken 1,407 square feet at the south end. Lifestyle retail shops, a local produce market, outfitter and clothing stores are suggested.
Then there’s the ground floor, on the north end of this split-level structure. Here the developers envision such uses as a brew pub, restaurant, spa, gym, club or other possibilities. The ground floor offers private ground level access and space outside for a deck up to 2,000 square feet. Ceilings are 14 feet high in most of this area.
Business tenants they hope to attract, Mitchell stated, include both existing businesses wishing to relocate as well as entrepreneurs.
Retail spaces available are purposely made so they are not so spacious that the business owner would take on too much risk to make their enterprise viable, he noted. “This should make a big difference,” he said.
Mitchell said that the interior construction on the first floor and ground floor is expected to be completed this spring.  Phase-2 of the work outside is also expected to get underway with the advent of spring, bringing in additional parking in the triangular area and improvements to how the entrance drive meets Route 6. Once further parking is provided, other prospective tenants will be able to move in.
Built as the largest bluestone factory in the world, the landmark is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.  To date, the developers have invested $12 million in the project.  Mitchell pointed out that a state-of-the-art environment for the educational and business opportunities have been provided, while retaining much of the historic character. The polished, sanded wood floors are original.
Mitchell is the contact person for leasing space. For more information, he may be reached at (570)647-6900 or (855)795-SILK.
On-line:
www.hawleysilkmill.com.