Orange County Issues RFPs for Camp LaGuardia and Newburgh Historic Properties

John Jordan | June 2020

Orange County Executive Steven Neuhaus at the Camp LaGuardia property in 2016. FILE PHOTO

GOSHEN—Orange County announced on June 24 it had issued separate Request for Proposals to developers and investors for the purchase of the massive Camp LaGuardia property in Chester and Blooming Grove and three iconic properties in Downtown Newburgh.

Both the Camp LaGuardia and Grand Street properties are county-owned. The Camp LaGuardia property, a former New York City men’s homeless shelter, was acquired by the county in 2007 and features four parcels totaling 258.3 acres including a 153.5-acre parcel in the Town of Chester; a 40.8-acre parcel in the Town of Chester; a 59.6-acre parcel in the Town of Blooming Grove and a 4.4-acre parcel in the Village of Chester.

The county acquired the Grand Street Properties in December 2013. The properties include a former YMCA, Masonic Temple and American Legion buildings. The county acquired the Newburgh properties in the hopes of expanding SUNY Orange’s services to those properties.

The county attempted to have the Camp LaGuardia property redeveloped and retained Mountco Construction of Scarsdale as the developer, but in 2016 spent approximately $1.3 million to terminate the deal with Mountco, which had proposed a $300-million mixed-use development on the property but failed to secure approvals from affected municipalities to allow the project to break ground.

“These sites are perfect for commercial development and will provide economic development as well as job opportunities for Orange County residents,” said Orange County Executive Steven Neuhaus said. “I’m pleased that the county is moving forward to put these properties back on the tax rolls and to productive use, which will be a benefit to not just the county, but also to the City of Newburgh and the Towns of Chester and Blooming Grove.”

“Camp LaGuardia is close to the Heritage Trail and to Route 17, and can become a terrific opportunity for economic growth,” said Orange County Legislator John Vero, who represents Chester. “We need proposals which generate long-term revenue for the county and are compatible with local land use needs. Hopefully, multiple entities can demonstrate some interest in this property.”

In terms of the Grand Street Properties possible sale, City of Newburgh Manager Joe Donat, said, “We look forward to seeing the potential buyers who are ready to invest in Newburgh and Orange County and have the means and creativity to turn these properties into success stories.”

The deadline for the submittal of proposals to acquire Camp LaGuardia is Thursday, Aug. 7. The deadline for submittal of proposals for one, two or three of the county-owned buildings at 48, 54 and 62 Grand St. in Newburgh is Thursday, July 30.

John Jordan
Editor, Real Estate In-Depth