destiny usa

6:23am

Fri June 27, 2014
Business

Restaurants consider forming association to combat Destiny USA tax breaks

Restaurant owners meet in Syracuse to discuss ways to combat Destiny USA's tax breaks.
Ellen Abbott WRVO

Independent restaurants in central New York are hoping to fight what they call an uneven playing field when it comes to Destiny USA. Many restaurants say they’ve lost business since the mega-mall expanded a few years ago with the help of a tax deal with the city of Syracuse.

Denis Sick, of Mohegan Manor in Baldwinsville, has seen business fall 30 to 40 percent since December a year ago, and puts the blame squarely on competition from Destiny’s chain restaurants.

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3:50pm

Wed March 5, 2014
Politics and Government

Mahoney says Destiny hotel may benefit from new duty-free rules

Mahoney at her State of the County Address Tuesday
Ellen Abbott

The Onondaga County Industrial Development Agency (OCIDA) is getting to work on the latest request from the developer of Destiny USA for a tax break to build a 252-room hotel across the street from the mall.

Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney says OCIDA needs to consider Canadian tourism before granting tax breaks to Destiny. Many of the out-of-town visitors to Destiny are Canadian and, with new duty-free Canadian rules, Mahoney says more visitors are coming to town for more than a day.

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5:51pm

Wed February 12, 2014
Business

Miner says tax break for Destiny USA hotel would be a "mistake"

Destiny USA

Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner says giving the Destiny USA entertainment and shopping center a tax break to build a hotel would be “a mistake,” but the mayor actually has little say over those incentives.

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8:20am

Mon February 10, 2014
Regional Coverage

Destiny USA asking Onondaga County for tax breaks for proposed hotel

An aerial shot of Destiny USA.
Destiny USA

The information gathering phase of a proposed 252-room hotel project next to the Destiny USA mall in Syracuse has started.

Onondaga County and the City of Syracuse both received letters last week from Destiny indicating a plan to build a hotel across the street from the mall. The developer is asking for tax breaks from the county consistent with deals other hotels have gotten. The difference, according to mayoral spokesman Tim Carroll, is that Destiny is going through the county.

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2:54pm

Thu February 6, 2014
Business

Destiny USA has new plans to build its own hotel

Destiny USA

The owners of the Destiny USA mega-mall and entertainment center in Syracuse again have plans to build a hotel as part of its complex along Onondaga Lake.

The mall this week sent a letter to Mayor Stephanie Miner and Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney. A spokesman for the mayor confirmed they received the letter but had no further comment. The mayor has long opposed the mall's large and lengthy property tax break.

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9:55am

Fri November 29, 2013
Regional Coverage

Store owners gear up for Small Business Saturday

A view inside the River's End Bookstore in Oswego.
Gino Geruntino WRVO

Away from the hustle and bustle of Destiny USA and Great Northern Mall, mom and pop shops throughout the region are working hard to promote their own version of Black Friday -- Small Business Saturday.

The city of Oswego is no different. Bill Riley, owner of the River's End Bookstore, has embraced the event since its creation several years ago. His store is hosting two local authors on Saturday, including former political cartoonist Frank Cammuso and award winning author Laurie Halse Anderson.
 

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9:32am

Fri November 29, 2013
Regional Coverage

Destiny USA expects massive crowds on Black Friday

An aerial shot of Destiny USA.
US Embassy Canada Flickr

Shoppers hitting the stores on this Black Friday expect it to be crowded, since there will probably be more people than ever at central New York’s biggest shopping venue.

A year ago, the expansion to Destiny USA was still in its early stages, with storefronts not yet filled. This year, there are 80 or so more stores, restaurants, and entertainment venues than there were a year ago, according to Mall Manager Rob Schoeneck. That’s already meant more shoppers than in the past.

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4:01pm

Mon October 28, 2013
Environment

LEED program trying to change the course of building design

An aerial shot of Destiny USA.
Destiny USA (US Embassy Canada, Flickr)

More and more buildings are making the push to become LEED certified, a voluntary system that rates the environmental sustainability of projects. But what is LEED and how is it used to determine how green a building is?

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7:27am

Mon August 5, 2013
The Upstate Economy

Destiny USA's impact one year later

Officials celebrate the one year birthday of Destiny USA.
Ellen Abbott/WRVO

The first year of Destiny USA has been a boon to the tourism industry in central New York, according to tourism officials. David Holder, president of the Syracuse Convention and Visitors Bureau says hotel occupancy figures show a marked increase in visitors when the bureau promotes the mall/entertainment venue. He says the geographic origin of those visitors also tells the tale.

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8:32am

Tue May 21, 2013
Business

Destiny USA tries to make it a comfortable destination for tour bus drivers

Destiny USA's new lounge for tour bus drivers
Ellen Abbott/WRVO

Bus drivers who bring customers to Destiny USA in Syracuse won't be waiting in their buses for passengers to finish shopping anymore. The mall has created a new bus drivers lounge and the idea is to expand on what is already a big source of shoppers at the Syracuse mall.

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4:29pm

Tue April 2, 2013
Business

Destiny USA and Syracuse reach deal to avoid legal battles

The Destiny USA shopping mall in Syracuse, N.Y.
Destiny USA

For the first time in Bill Ryan's 10 years of public service, Syracuse and the owner of the Destiny USA mega-sized shopping mall are not facing legal action. Ryan is a former common councilor and now chief of staff for the mayor and chairman of Syracuse Industrial Development Agency (SIDA), the city's development arm.

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4:29pm

Tue December 4, 2012
Business

Money from Destiny USA could be used for Inner Harbor upgrades

Syracuse's Inner Harbor.
Credit scottwdw / via Flickr

Some of the money collected through the tax break agreement between the Destiny USA mega-mall and Syracuse will be used to try and win federal funding for Inner Harbor improvements. The Syracuse Industrial Development Agency (SIDA) has approved the use of $500,000 from Destiny payments to be part of a match for a federal grant the city is applying for.

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9:06am

Tue September 25, 2012
Business

Syracuse, Destiny USA appear headed to court over parking lots

Destiny USA is opening up an expansion to the mall, but it is not as big as once promised.
Destiny USA

The saga of the owner of the Destiny USA megamall and the city of Syracuse continues. The two appear destined to end up back in court as the Syracuse Industrial Development Agency (SIDA) plans to file a lawsuit against developer Robert Congel's Pyramid Group - the mall's owner - over parking lots.

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4:06pm

Mon August 6, 2012
Regional Coverage

New York's record on economic development projects mixed

Governor Andrew Cuomo says New York’s track record on supporting economic development projects is hit and miss.

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9:39am

Thu August 2, 2012
Regional Coverage

Despite bumps in the road, Carousel at last becomes Destiny

A view of the first level of the formerly 'Carousel' expansion- now Destiny USA.
Destiny USA

For more than 22 years shoppers have flocked to the Carousel Center Mall in Syracuse. That name goes in the history books today, as the mall is re-branded as Destiny USA.

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3:44pm

Wed July 25, 2012
Regional Coverage

Syracuse shaking as much out of Destiny USA megamall as it can

Inside the expansion of the Destiny USA mall, set to officially open Aug. 2.
Destiny USA

Syracuse's threat of legal action against the Destiny USA mega-mall has prompted a matching threat from the mall's developer.

The dispute involves whether the developer owes the city a $2.2 million dollar payment because of delays in the of the construction of the mall.

In 2002, Destiny USA struck a deal with the Syracuse Industrial Development Agency (SIDA). The arrangement allows the mall developer to make 30 years worth of payments-in-lieu-of-taxes (PILOT).

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11:00am

Mon July 23, 2012
Politics and Government

Part I: Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner on the Campbell Conversations

In recent months Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner has been an evangelist for fiscal sustainability and a clear-eyed look at the financial challenges facing the city. Before that she was a town crier regarding the Destiny project.

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7:10am

Fri July 6, 2012
The Upstate Economy

Did Destiny USA ruin it for other developers in Syracuse?

Syracuse's Destiny USA shopping mall will remain just a mall.
Destiny USA

There's an old promotional video the developer behind the Destiny USA megamall released several years ago. It includes images of glass-enclosed golf courses, huge hotels and helicopter tours of upstate taking off from Syracuse's Inner Harbor.

Despite ending by promising "grand opening, summer 2004," you won't see any of that on the shores of Onondaga Lake today.

All you'll see is an even bigger mall - despite developer Robert Congel winning a 30-year property tax break worth about $600 million as an incentive from the city to build the Disney Land-like attraction.

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9:55am

Thu June 7, 2012
Regional Coverage

Destiny USA puts further development on pause

It is the end of any collaboration between the City of Syracuse and the Pyramid Companies on the expansion of the Carousel Center Mall.  But the notice this week that Pyramid is calling the current work at the mall the final phase of the Destiny project may not tell the entire story.

Destiny spokesman David Aitken says this move doesn't rule out more Destiny deals in the future.

"Are we hopeful for additional development down the road?  The answer's yes.  But we are going to take it one day at a time,"says Aitken.

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4:30pm

Wed June 6, 2012
Regional Coverage

Destiny USA: Expansion could be at an end

The expansion of Carousel Center in Syracuse could be at an end, at least for now. The developer of the mall complex that will soon be known as Destiny USA, is now calling this the final phase of the development.

Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner says the city development agency found out yesterday that the developer was exercising a clause in an earlier agreement that would allow them to make this move.

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8:44am

Mon November 14, 2011
The Upstate Economy

Destiny USA addition tease

You won't see many fully functioning stores as you walk into the addition from an entrance next to the Disney store. ..but you will get a taste of what destiny u-s-a is going to look like.  And the broad boulevard look underneath exposed steel beams doesn't appeal to everyone.

"it reminds my of New York City,  going through the bus station.  Port Authority,  that's what it reminds me of.  Said Sophie Lafontaine of Syracuse.

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1:11pm

Fri November 11, 2011
The Upstate Economy

David Aitken on The Campbell Conversations

David Aitken

The expansion of Syracuse’s Carousel Center Mall—the first stage of the grander and still-planned project called Destiny USA—seems to be getting some traction of late.  Parts of the expansion will be open later this month.  David Aitken, a Destiny executive and spokesperson, discusses the expansion and the future plans for the project, and reflects on why the Destiny project has been such a political and economic lightning rod for the region’s residents and the media.  He also discusses the exterior appearance of the expansion and the possible tensions—and synergy—between this project and t

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