The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

Mark Simonson

September 23, 2013

Oneonta saw construction, destruction in fall of 1973


One memento of the River Street School, the school bell, was saved, and is on display at Riverside School.

Burt Box Co. got go-ahead from town

“The Oneonta Town Planning Board last night gave its approval to the F.N. Burt Co. plant construction plans to be used if the company decides to locate in the town,” it was reported on Friday, Sept. 21.

The company did locate here, producing cardboard packaging. The site chosen was on Browne Street in Oneonta’s West End. Although plans were made for the firm to open in June 1974, delays in placing a water line to the plant caused an opening later that year.

The company planned to hire and become operational in two phases, with 100 employees in the first and 200 more in the second. Some of F.N. Burt’s clients included Avon, Revlon, Lipton, Pillsbury, General Mills, Ultra Bright and Colgate.

Parking structure project got its start

“For the next couple of weeks the sound of pounding will be a downtown fixture,” the Star reported on Wednesday, Sept. 26, “as work begins on phase one of the $1.2 million three-tier parking structure,” found today at the corner of Market and South Main streets. Piles were being driven into the lot to support the steel and concrete building.

There had been debate among city officials as to whether the parking structure should be two-tiered, or postponed entirely until the city’s “financial position improved.”

“However, the projected growth of the city and obligations incurred through participation in the urban renewal program insured the passage of the three-tier proposal, which will accommodate 420 cars.”

The plan was to have the parking structure completed in the spring of 1974, but numerous delays held off the opening to the late fall of 1975.

This weekend: The War Exhibit Train arrived in Oneonta in September 1918.

City Historian Mark Simonson’s column appears twice weekly. On Saturdays, his column focuses on the area during the Depression and before. His Monday columns address local history after the Depression. If you have feedback or ideas about the column, write to him at The Daily Star, or email him at His website is His columns can be found at

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