A petition signed by Carl L. Shearer and Leon L. Bauerie, property owners in the area, were opposed to the expansion. Text from the petition read, “While the city must expand commercially it must also expand residentially. For the present the greater need is for housing in the city.”
Counsel for the original petitioners of the commercial zone expansion, Albert E. Farone, said that property value in the affected area would increase by 300 percent within 10 years if the zone was established.
It wasn’t long before the zone was approved by the city, and plans were made to widen the street from 23 to 30 feet. Dr. Joseph T. Pondolfino was given a permit to construct a new residential building that would also house his dental office at 39 Dietz St.
With the expansion, and the increasing need for parking in downtown Oneonta, the parking lot on the east side of Dietz Street also expanded. In May 1949, properties at 26-28 and 30 Dietz St. were set for demolition to increase parking space in the area. Additional properties were demolished during the 1950s.
Jerry Monser opened a restaurant in April 1954 at 15 Dietz St., Jerry’s, at the corner of Wall Street, once a home and office of Dr. Meigs Case, dating back to the late 1880s. It was later demolished to make way for additional parking for Bresee’s Department Store customers, and is now a public parking lot.
In more recent memory, the office building at 37 Dietz St., where Family Planning of South Central New York, formerly Planned Parenthood, has offices and several doctors have practices, and the Bookhout-Friery Building, 41-45 Dietz Street, were built during Oneonta’s urban renewal years of the 1960s and ‘70s. The latter had an open house on April 27-28, 1973, then home of the Bookhout Insurance Agency and a new restaurant, The Hobbit House.