Saratoga County

9 Miles East Farm eyes market to the west — in Spa City

Business would offer locally sourced food
Moby Rick’s Seafood fish market on Lake Avenue in Saratoga Springs is where 9 Miles East Farm is proposing to build a market.
Moby Rick’s Seafood fish market on Lake Avenue in Saratoga Springs is where 9 Miles East Farm is proposing to build a market.

Editor’s Note: This story was corrected at 12:37 p.m. on July 17. An earlier version incorrectly identified the architect involved with the project.

Locally-sourced gourmet pizza, along with fresh produce, baked goods and more, could be coming to the city’s East Side.

Mary and Gordon Sacks, the owners of 9 Miles East Farm in Schuylerville, plan to build a general store where Moby Rick’s fish market now stands on Lake Avenue (about 10 miles to the west).

Gordon Sacks said in an emailed statement, “9 Miles East Farm has served the Saratoga Springs community for more than a decade. Many of our customers live near to the Lake Avenue location, and we think a walkable general store focused on high-quality, locally sourced items would be an asset to the community.”

The plans involve demolishing the current building and constructing a new one, which would have separate space for the net-to-table fish market and the farm-fresh store. 

In an open letter emailed to customers and the Saratoga Springs community, the Sacks family said the proposal is, in some ways, a “radical departure from the industrialization of the food production, preparation and delivery system.”

The space was home to Pepper’s Market for more than a century, and would become Pepper’s Corner under the proposal. The Sacks pointed to neighborhood markets of the past, like Pepper’s, the Pink Store and Five Points Market, as their inspiration. 

“It’s a return to a neighborhood model, sourcing from local producers and competing on quality and service rather than massive scale.”

The store, to be called 9 Miles East Farmhouse, would have a “carefully curated selection of grocery and convenience items, prepared foods and baked goods tailored to the needs of East Side residents. The focus would be on local products and regional craft producers.”

For years, the Schuylerville farm has delivered fresh vegetables, prepared meals, GO Box salads and locally-sourced pizza to Spa City residents. The pizza-making operation would be relocated to the Lake Avenue spot, “shortening delivery times for customers and opening up the opportunity to purchase high-quality locally sourced pizza by the slice.”

Todd Shimkus, president of the Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce, said the farm has a strong following downtown. The chamber is helping to promote its satellite operation, a truck that sets up Wednesdays in Adirondack Trust Co.’s Broadway lot and offers pre-made healthy meals.

“Having a more permanent presence for them is going to certainly help satisfy a need and demand that’s clearly there,” he said. “These days, a lot of people are looking for locally grown, fresh healthy meals.”

And they’re looking for convenience, he added.

“You literally can walk in and grab a GO Box, and you’ve got a healthy lunch.”

Gordon Sacks declined to provide a timeline for the project, saying he has learned not to speculate about construction schedules, but the proposal is scheduled to go before the city Zoning Board of Appeals on July 24. 

The project’s architect, Studio A Landscape Architecture, is seeking an area variance needed to add a parking space and a sign variance because the project calls for two signs — one for each business.

Categories: Business, News, Schenectady County

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