Capital Region Land Bank, Social Enterprise and Training (SEAT) Center and Saint-Gobain Partner to Renovate Home in Schenectady

Capital Region Land Bank, Social Enterprise and Training (SEAT) Center and Saint-Gobain Partner to Renovate Home in Schenectady


For Immediate Release



Contact: Gary McCarthy, Mayor                                  Office:         (518) 381-5000
City Hall, 105 Jay Street                                              Cell:             (518) 424-0483
Room 111                                                                      Fax:              (518) 382-5272
Schenectady NY 12305                                      

Capital Region Land Bank, Social Enterprise and Training (SEAT) Center
and Saint-Gobain Partner to Renovate Home in Schenectady

Schenectady, N.Y., October 6, 2015 – The Capital Region Land Bank today announced plans to work with the Social Enterprise and Training (SEAT) Center andSaint-Gobain to renovate a vacant home at 706 Vale Place in Schenectady. The home at 706 Vale Place is located in the Eastern Avenue neighborhood where building renovations, demolitions and other upgrades are underway.

“Our goal at 706 Vale Place is to transform an eyesore into a sustainable and affordable place for a new family to call home,” said Richard Ruzzo, Chairman of the Capital Region Land Bank and a member of the Schenectady County Legislature.  “We are pleased to have the support of the SEAT Center and Saint-Gobain for this renovation project.”

Mayor Gary R. McCarthy said, “Through our Home Ownership Made Easy in Schenectady (H.O.M.E.S.) Program and our partnership with the Land Bank, we have seen the significant beginnings of revitalization in our neighborhoods.  Now we continue these efforts with a new innovative job training component.”

The renovation of 706 Vale Place project will be designed to achieve the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) certification, and will be sold to a qualified buyer upon completion.

The 706 Vale Place project will also provide area youth with on-the-job training through YouthBuild Schenectady @ SEAT, which provides out-of-school, out-of-work young adults between the ages of 18 to

24 with the opportunity to build energy-efficient, healthy and affordable homes in their communities and gain green job skills while earning their GED’s or high school diplomas. This project will be the second completed by YouthBuild Schenectady and Saint-Gobain under the national partnership between the Saint-Gobain Corporation Foundation and YouthBuild USA in support of the youth development program’s national green building and job training program.

The Saint-Gobain family of companies, including its North American construction materials subsidiary, CertainTeed, will donate energy-efficient building products to the 706 Vale Place project. In addition, employees from Saint-Gobain and CertainTeed will provide on-site support and mentorship during the renovation work.

The City is demolishing 100 homes and renovating hundreds of others through the Mayor’s H.O.M.E.S. Program, which also includes efforts to market homes to new residents and to sell City-owned property to residents who commit to invest in Schenectady.

“Saint-Gobain is deeply rooted in the Schenectady community; it’s where many employees and their families call home. Through our partnership with YouthBuild Schenectady, we’re able to help young people learn green construction skills and provide hands-on training that sets the foundation for them to obtain a meaningful career,” said Brad Johnson, Vice President, Abrasives North America and Automotive Aftermarket Worldwide, at Saint-Gobain. “We look forward to kicking-off our second rehab project in Schenectady in partnership with the Capital Region Land Bank and the City, and getting our hands dirty with the next class of YouthBuild students.”

In June 2014, Saint-Gobain and YouthBuild Schenectady (then operated by Northeast Parent & Child Society) completed the renovation of 843 Emmett Street in Schenectady, the non-profits’ first gut-rehab home in Schenectady, achieving the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) Gold certification.

About Capital Region Land Bank

The Capital Region Land Bank was established in 2012 to deal with the problems stemming from vacant and abandoned properties. The Land Bank has already built an impressive track record in Schenectady working closely with Mayor McCarthy’s Homeownership Made Easy in Schenectady Initiative (H.O.M.E.S.), the Schenectady County Metroplex Development Authority and the City of Schenectady Industrial Development Agency to remove blighted buildings and rehabilitate commercial and residential property.  In 2014, the Land Bank received a $3 million award from the New York State Attorney General’s office, the largest award in the state, for demolition and renovation of problem properties.

About SEAT Center/YouthBuild Schenectady @ SEAT

The Social Enterprise and Training (SEAT) Center is a newly formed non-profit entity that provides YouthBuild Schenectady as one of its services.  The SEAT Center provides education, job training, college preparation, support services, and employment for young adults 18-24 years old and hires young adults to provide competitive market rate home improvement services. YouthBuild Schenectady @ SEAT will train 34 out of school young adults, ages 18-24, who are looking to complete their high school education and receive construction and life skills training with the goal of enrolling in college, obtaining employment, and/or joining local trade unions.  As part of their training, the YouthBuild students will receive OSHA 10 Certification, LEAD RRP, NCCER Construction Core Competencies, and the Basics of Building Science. Formed in 2006, YouthBuild Schenectady has provided educational, career, life skills

training and leadership development to hundreds of young adults in Schenectady County while contributing tens of thousands of hours of community service and refurbishing dozens of houses for low-income homeowners.

About Saint-Gobain in North America

For 350 years, Saint-Gobain, the world leader in sustainable environments, has designed and manufactured high-performance building materials that improve the lives of people all over the world. From the Hall of Mirrors at Versailles and the glass pyramid at the Louvre, to The Statue of Liberty and The World Trade Center, and even components that allow the Mars Rover Curiosity to seek out life on another planet, Saint-Gobain has been a part of the fabric of human history, advancement and improvement for three and a half centuries – and 2015 is the company’s commemorative year.

In North America, the company upholds this rich history of innovation by making a material difference in the spaces where people work, live, play, heal and learn. Along with its North American headquarters in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, Saint-Gobain has more than 265 locations in North America and approximately 15,000 employees. In the United States and Canada, Saint-Gobain reported sales of approximately $6.2 billion in 2014. Join Saint-Gobain in a celebration of the company’s 350 years of innovation, wonders and advancements by and connect with Saint-Gobain North America on Facebook and Twitter.