Newburgh Mayor Judy Kennedy has said investments like Atlas’ are what’s needed to attract other businesses. That can mean revenue and jobs for a city that has long found both in short supply.
“Our clients come here and we go to lunch,” said Alice Vaughan, owner of Hudson River Bindery. “Sometimes they’re afraid to come to Newburgh, but we tell them we’re near Washington’s Headquarters, and they all know where that is.”
She came to her 8-foot-wide, 40-foot-deep space in August. The 14-foot-high ceiling makes it seem bigger, she said.
“There’s an aura of industry here,” Vaughan says, ticking off an inventory of neighbors.
Steve Gerberich works behind a door decorated with a horseshoe of plastic trinkets. There are spacemen and rocket ships, vegetables and a building from his native Iowa.
Gerberich is still unpacking truckloads of flea market finds for his interactive mechanical sculpture business Gerb-O-Matic, which opened at the building in August. His work is regularly featured at science and regional museums. It brought life to Manhattan storefronts including Bloomingdale’s.
“All of my work is mechanical and hopefully interactive,” he said after biking to work one morning. “Push a button, turn a crank and something happens.”
The word community comes up often when speaking with landlord Wright and his tenants. Wright talks about a chamber music concert held in the building every other month. Barbara Smith Gioia speaks of an annual Open Studios event organized by Grant Street's Newburgh Art Supply. It brings visitors to the working spaces of artists around the city.
“I had over 100 people come to my studio in October,” Gioia said.