Chautauqua County is helping a marina bring new life to a closed bowling alley.
During a meeting of the Chautauqua County Industrial Development Agency, it was announced that Lawson Boat and Motor, LLC had purchased the former Fountain Bowl, located at 3316 Fluvanna Ave. The new owners are in the process of renovating it for it to become a showroom and boat storage facility and are seeking some financial assistance.
The Lawson Boat and Motor requested a 15-year payment in lieu of tax agreement and a property tax abatement for the former bowling alley. According to IDA officials, the project cost is $940,000, which encompasses acquisition, construction, renovation, and other fees.
The construction work is expected to create five full-time jobs. The storage portion is expected to be completed by September and the showroom work will be done in April.
Board Chairman Michael Metzger said he is glad something is being done with the facility. “It’s good that they’ve taken over property that let’s say was not up to standards,” he said. “We appreciate them renovating existing property and facilities.”
County IDA Chief Executive Officer Mark Geise said the new owners have a good track record. “We helped Lawson with the marina and they’ve done a great job there, expanded and expanded. We also helped them with a parcel next door. There was an old building that was falling down. That was sort of the gateway on Fluvanna there coming into the city. Working with the (Chautauqua County) Land Bank, we were able to get that building down. They own that and they’ll probably do something with that in the future,” he said.
The county IDA Board of Directors unanimously approved the tax agreements.
Fluvanna Fountain Bowl’s Facebook page is still in use, however, there were no posts made since April 27, 2014, which may have been around the time it closed.
An article in The Post-Journal archives indicates it was constructed in 1959 by the owners of Ten Pin Lanes, Inc. At that time the 40-lane Fountain Bowl was the largest such facility in the area.