Press Bay Court
John Guttridge, along with his business partner David Kuckuk, has forged an innovative path on the west side of the Commons,
breathing new life into West State/MLK, Jr. and Green Streets. Their company, Urban Core, LLC, has provided an exciting example of how to transform old structures into fresh-looking, low-carbon buildings that help create a vibrant neighborhood.
Press Bay Alley, just down the street, was one of the original fifteen buildings in 2016 when the Ithaca 2030 District officially launched. In 2021, Urban Core added two more buildings to the District: Press Bay Court and the old Ithaca Journal building. Press Bay Court is especially impressive because Urban Core took a rundown, vacant building and turned it into a distinctive
mixed-use destination that provides a nice complement to Press Bay Alley and, like the latter, is fossil-fuel free.
The renovation, completed in late 2018, created several small-scale retail spaces on the ground floor and four one-bedroom apartments on the second floor, adding some moderate-income housing to a market seriously deficient in this category. Some main features implemented during the renovation include:
- High-efficiency air source heat pumps that provide heat and air conditioning
- All LED lighting
- New EnergyStar electric appliances, including for cooking
- Airtight spray foam insulation and high-performance rigid foam on the roof
- Expansive new windows on the ground floor that take advantage of the natural light
The building sailed past the 2025 reduction targets in 2021 for both energy and water
performance and came very close to meeting the 2030 reduction targets. Similar to the 104 East
State St. building on the Commons, which we highlighted in last year’s annual report, Press Bay
Court demonstrates what existing properties can achieve by incorporating standard green
improvements, and underscores the fact that bleeding-edge technology is not necessary to
significantly reduce the carbon footprint of an already existing structure.