Drey Line team seeks to utilize potential - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Drey Line team seeks to utilize potential

April 23, 2004

Albany-- If you've been around the Good Life City very long, you're probably familiar with the Drey Line. It's a blighted area downtown where, for decades, men hung out looking for work.

Now, some of those same men are becoming a vital part of downtown's redevelopment.

The Drey Line Development team has big plans for this area of downtown Albany. And some of the members of that team have an interesting connection to this area. They came right off that Drey line bench across the street and ended up with dream jobs.

It's another day of hard work for fifty year old Jason Thomas. "I'm getting in on the ground floor of a business that's coming up."

Thomas is part of the Drey Line Development team, a company formed by downtown developer Peter Studl. Studl says, "Came from the Drey Line-- full time, forty hour a week fully reporting employees."

There are nine DLD employees, like Carl Gillis: "Everyone gets along. Everyone cooperates with one another and it's really fine."

So far, supervisors are impressed with their employees work ethics. Peter Studl said, "This group here is an awesome group. They're really talented, high energy, really enthusiastic about this work."

And there is plenty of work for this team to take on as they play an important role in the revitalization efforts in downtown Albany. Carl Gillis is 50 years old: "We're on a project as far as helping Albany, downtown Albany look a lot better which I kind of like."

Jason Thomas was taken off the Drey Line bench into a full time job with benefits and bonus packages.  "I'm a lot more relaxed when I get off of work. I got a place to go that I don't have to worry about if I'm going to make it another day or not. I know that the next day the work is going to be here."

"I'm looking forward because it just keeps getting better and better every day," said Carl Gillis. Better jobs and lifestyles for the DreyLine Development Team and a better tomorrow for downtown Albany.

One of the biggest projects for the DLD is on the corner of Washington and Roosevelt, Downtown. The property will house a blues bar with big name acts and renovated office space. DLD plans to hire more workers because there are so many projects planned for the area.

The DLD has only been in business for about a month so it's just the beginning for hopeful Drey Line workers.

Supervisors say all workers of the Drey Line Development team have showed up on time and ready to work everyday and that they all passed drug tests before beginning their full time jobs.

posted at 5:50PM by dave.miller@walb.com

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