Mayor Richard David says efforts are ongoing to ensure that the Boscov's department store in downtown Binghamton remains open.

The mayor said he speaks with company chairman Jim Boscov "on a frequent basis about a variety of different things including the future of the store."

Speaking on WNBF Radio's Binghamton Now on Tuesday, David declined to go into specifics about a future lease for Boscov's. But he indicated some new financial incentives to the Pennsylvania-based retailer may be part of the discussions.

The mayor said he believes "Boscov's wants to stay in the city of Binghamton." But he noted, the store is "in a very old" building which is owned by the Broome County Industrial Development Agency.

David suggested efforts are being made to find some way to cover costs associated with modernizing the Court Street property. He said "that can and should happen."

The mayor said he and Boscov's representatives are discussing some things that need to be done to the building.

David said he doesn't know whether the company is considering moving its local store to the Oakdale Mall in Johnson City. Two of the mall's anchor stores - Macy's and Sears - have closed in recent months.

The mayor said he's "sure" the mall owners are trying to lure Boscov's but he believes the store would do better in Binghamton. He said Boscov's officials have indicated things have been improving at the store in recent years, primarily because more people are living downtown.

As for the future of the Binghamton store, David said: "I'm hopeful that we can out an agreement."

Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News (file)

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