The historic Williamsville Water Mill is set to become the permanent home of a popular village sweet shop.
The deadline to submit offers for the old mill on East Spring Street passed on Monday with the owners of My Sweet Jenny’s submitting the only bid.
The village still has to complete restoration work on the mill, but will begin ironing out a contract with Sweet Jenny’s owners, Howard and Tara Cadmus, said Williamsville Mayor Brian J. Kulpa.
“Howard and Tara Cadmus are true friends of the village and will be great stewards for the preservation of the mill,” Kulpa said.
The entire process is expected to take several months before the village turns the mill over to its new owners, Kulpa said.
“There’s still a whole lot more to do,” Howard Cadmus said. “It’s a long, arduous process, but it’s going to be good for Spring Street development – and good for the community.”
Williamsville – which rescued the 1800s-era property from foreclosure in 2005 for $450,000 – began fielding offers for the historic mill and two adjacent buildings in hopes the property can be redeveloped as an anchor for a planned “Village Square” on Spring Street.
The owners of Sweet Jenny’s, who have been leasing the mill for retail sales on a month-to-month basis since December, offered the village $450,000.
Storch Cooperative Development of Williamsville also expressed interest in creating a bed and breakfast on the property, but the developer didn’t submit an offer to the village, Kulpa said.
Meanwhile, Sweet Jenny’s plans to use the mill as its permanent retail and manufacturing site. Several local companies also have expressed interest in teaming up on the project and converting one of the other buildings on site – known as the Mill House, or red building – into a microbrewery.
The other building on the grounds – known as the Zent House, or white building – would be used as office space for Howard Cadmus’ law practice.
The bid from the village sweet shop even drew praise on Tuesday from Sen. Charles E. Schumer, D-N.Y., who has secured $3.3 million in federal money for the variety of infrastructure improvements Williamsville is planning on Main and Spring streets.
“Williamsville is quickly becoming a model for how smart investment in infrastructure can improve quality of life, help grow local businesses, and make a community more attractive to tourists and visitors,” Schumer said in a prepared statement. “The decision to make the Water Mill the permanent home of Sweet Jenny’s is the cherry on top of a project that is truly transforming the Williamsville community.”