Why Upper Union Street?

Upper Union Street is a charming neighborhood main street with a unique, high quality mix of one of a kind shops and services along with fine and casual dining. Our location between Schenectady's arts and entertainment district, Niskayuna's upscale neighborhoods and Union College's campus makes the street a destination for residents, professionals, students and visitors.

Retail, restaurant and business-to-business entrepreneurs can find a home on Upper Union Street for start-ups, expansions and relocations. With the recent trend toward urban living and the many assets of Upper Union's location, this shopping district is poised to further capitalize on the success it has known for decades.

Great Demographics

Upper Union Street is surrounded by neighborhoods with demographics that support businesses. In fact, our neighbors include nine out of the Capital Region's twenty wealthiest zip codes (according to the Business Review's 2008 book of lists). Niskayuna, Rexford, Alplaus, Clifton Park, Burnt Hills, Guilderland, Latham, Scotia, Colonie and Rotterdam all share boundaries with Upper Union Street.

All together there are 327,000 potential customers living within ten miles of Upper Union Street - more than one third of the Capital Region's entire population.

Our 2008 Market Analysis shows that the 1 mile, 5 mile and 10 mile areas around Upper Union Street have growing populations and are projected to continue growing through 2013. All three areas also have higher incomes than both the Capital Region and New York State. In fact, over 55% of households in the 1 and 10 mile areas and 50% of households in the 5 mile area have annual incomes of $50,000 or more, and about 18% of households in the 1 and 5 mile and 23% in the 10 mile area have annual incomes of $100,000 or more.

Surrounded by Customers

Upper Union Street gets a great lunch crowd from the many nearby businesses. Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory (KAPL), General Electric and its expanding Global Research Center, Union College, Ellis Hospital (including the Bellevue and McClellan facilities), Sunnyview Hospital, MVP Health Care, the planned new Golub Corporation Headquarters and the exciting Proctors Theatre complex are a stone's throw from Upper Union Street. Five out of the Capital Region's ten highest earning private employers are within ten miles of the Upper Union Street Business District (according to the Business Review's 2008 book of lists).

Customers Driving Through

Union Street carried 10,600 cars per day as of the most recent traffic count. This is almost as much traffic as the much larger, and less pedestrian friendly State Street/Route 5 carried in 2005. So in addition to a walkable "Main Street" environment, businesses also benefit from terrific visibility from Union Street traffic.

You'll Be in Good Company

Several "Best Of" businesses make their homes on Union Street including Scotti's Restaurant, winner of Best Neighborhood Italian, and Gershon's Deli, perennial winner of the Best Deli category in both the Times Union and Metroland. Another neighbor, Michael's Shoe Service has been the Chamber of Schenectady County's Small Business of the Year. Two Upper Union businesses -- Northeastern Fine Jewelry and Pai's Tae Kwon Do -- have staged regional expansions from their Upper Union Street headquarters.

Lifestyle and Recreation

Nearby Union College adds a collegiate component to the street, while several public and private schools, churches and temples make adjacent areas true neighborhoods. Schenectady's charming and bustling Central Park, with its famed tennis facilities, concert stage, playing fields and rose gardens, is only two blocks away. Four challenging golf courses are within three miles. Three Mohawk River marinas and Schenectady Yacht Club are all within five miles.

Benefits to Employers and Business Owners

A successful matching grant façade improvement program and other financial incentives for business owners are available through the Schenectady Metroplex Development Authority and the Upper Union Street Business Improvement District (BID). See the incentives page for more information. Upper Union Street is on several CDTA bus routes, making it easy to access for both employees and customers.

Upper Union Street BID

The BID works proactively to improve Upper Union Street, through marketing, maintenance, and advocacy. For example, the BID organizes successful annual events and sponsors a seasonal farmers' market all of which draw customers to the street. The BID organizes co-operative and group advertising to give businesses cost effective advertising opportunities. The BID also works with elected and city officials and applies for public funds. This has resulted in a very successful façade program and city and state funds for streetscape improvements on the street.