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Edward Street empties, FX Matt Brewery to move in

By ANNA MEILER

UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) -- Most of the people on Edward Street in Utica have moved out. Their homes are empty and next year they will be torn down, so that FX Matt Brewery can move in.

The brewing industry is booming and there's no exception in Utica.

"We brew about 20 brews a week, a little more than that sometimes, and we just plain run out of tanks to put the beer in," said Nick Matt, CEO of FX Matt Brewery.

They need more space to ferment and age their beer, so they're brewing up plans to expand.

"We've actually bought a lot of the houses on Edward Street across from our offices and we could do it there, but we also have the ability to do it kind of behind this gift shop here which would be right next to the brew house," said Matt.

Building behind the gift shop would mean a smaller expansion, but they will still demolish the homes.

"We'll put a parking lot there, which actually I think everybody will be delighted with because it will give more parking for Varick Street but our offices too," said Matt.

By adding more aging and fermenting tanks the brewery will be able to produce anywhere from 100,000 to 250,000 more barrels of beer a year and that means adding more jobs.

"Eventually it's going to force us into a second shift in bottling and what's good about that is, is that's really where the people come in, that's where the jobs come in and so that's probably a couple years off," said Matt.

The owner of Nail Creek Pub and Brewery said the expansion will boost business on the popular bar strip of Varick Street.

"When I heard they were expanding I was quite excited. More product, more employees- it all trickles down to us here at Nail Creek Pub. We'll probably sell more lunches and probably sell more beers," said Chris Talgo.

And it will transform the look of the entire area.

"We'll do fencing down around the whole addition and so that will look much better. It will improve the appearance of the whole area," said Matt. "Having areas that really look good and are fun to come to, I think this whole Varick Street area is important to develop and develop nicely," said Matt.

They expect to keep growing, but when asked about any other future plans, Matt said, "I could tell you, but I'd have to kill you."

FX Matt Brewery hopes to start construction in the spring of 2014.

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