86 Glen Street, Glens Falls

Historical and Architectural Importance: This building was constructed in 1908, on the site of the McGregor Homestead, as the first Glens Falls automobile dealership and repair owned by Edward F. Irish, a successful businessman, who undoubtedly saw the promise of the mode of 20th century transportation. He had previously been successful in the retail shoe sales and repair business. He was considered a pioneer in the automobile business, having already begun a sales and repair operation in a barn on Bay Street prior to 1908.

Moving from shoes to automobiles was not an easy undertaking. Irish enlisted the help of W. Irving Griffing and Leland Livery (Griffing – Sawyer Building, 64 Glen Street). Griffing was Vice President of the Automobile Company in 1908. This relationship, not unlike Irish’s later relationship with the architect Potter, proved advantageous. No doubt, with Griffing’s experience in the carriage and livery business, and location of the livery nearby, the Auto Co. prospered. Significantly, the architectural style of the building has a striking similarity to the Griffing-Sawyer Building, indicating the same architect (unknown) and builder ( Gifford, Williams & Co.).

In the fall of 2007 Glen Street  Associates began the renovations of this structure which had been used as a warehouse building for several decades. The results of the transformation has been extremely dramatic with the conversion of a post and beam brick warehouse into a class A office building showing cutting edge detail with great historic architectural sensitivity. Today the building is fully occupied as the regional headquarters for NBT bank, Glens Falls Branch Bank for NBT and the Home office  Behan Communications.