A neighborhood that usually makes headlines for the wrong reasons, has reason to celebrate. Rochester's Plymouth-Exchange neighborhood--or PLEX--is far too often the scene of police activity.
But some young entrepreneurs are determined to make it better one shop at a time. A story of a business owner who's hungry to see PLEX prosper.
After growing up in Pittsford, Tony D'Alessandro opened up a deli in a neighborhood very different from the place he called home. This successful business owner convinced Rochester City Hall to let him cater to a community where others are hesitant to go. A decision that not only changed shop hours, but outlooks in the process.
Outside Deli Sandro's on Plymouth, an all too familiar sight.
Inside, a much more familiar sound.
Until this week, Tony D'Alessandro's sandwich shop was only allowed to stay open until 11 P.M. But customers wanted more.
"I love about the place, one, that it's in the neighborhood. Because there's so few choices in this neighborhood to get really good or great food at right now. And then the bread is fantastic. And the pepperjack is the best in the city, I think," said Matt Albright, Rochester.
Tony was closing his sub shot at 11pm and making special deliveries for those who called overnight. A move that violated city code. After petitioning the Rochester City Planning Commission and winning its approval, Tony can now cater to his customers. He delivers to their doorstep overnight on Fridays and Saturdays until 3:30 A.M.
"You get to know the neighbors. Everybody, it's very very close knit. Ya know, we have the opportunity to know the names of almost all of the customers that come in here. We get to build a relationship from that. Everybody has their own story to tell," said Tony D'Alessandro, Owner.
The win has inspired one of Deli Sandro's best customers to open up a computer shop next door.
"I'm going to give it a go. I've been operating, to a degree, out of my house. And it's been difficult trying to get any sort of people to come to this area. So, I'm going to give it a shot. And see what comes of it," said Aaron Rubin, Rochester.
Tony says of course he is cautious about the crime that has made headlines. Rochester police report more than a dozen shootings in that neighborhood this summer. But Tony says he believes its a small group of people that spoil the neighborhood and give it a bad name.