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Uncle Rico's joins a shopping complex revival in Niskayuna

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The latest development in the rebirth of a shopping complex in Niskayuna, Schenectady County, took place on Sunday. That's when Uncle Rico's Pizza, the fourth food-centric business there, opened in the former St. James Square.

It is owned by Errico Magnoli, a Waterford resident who moved to the Saratoga County in 2005 from his native Toronto, Canada. He dedicated the opening to his late father who, he said, always encouraged him to open his own pizzeria.

The location is part of ShopRite Square, a shopping complex once known as St. James Square. It had been neglected since original owner Reginald Scott filed for bankruptcy in 2006. That, however, has been largely reversed under new ownership although The Golden Phoenix, an Asian buffet, recently closed there.

Magnoli's menu consists of pizza, wings, salads, subs and other sandwiches, and desserts. If photos on his Facebook page are any indication of what's to come, there may be some rather imaginative pizza toppings, such as Nutella and strawberries.

Says Magnoli on his Facebook page, "Our top priority is to ensure that every one of our customers is satisfied. We also intend to be very involved in the community. Uncle Rico's Pizza will create a friendly, creative, respectful, fun and pleasant working environment in which our employees are fairly compensated and encouraged to respect the customer and the quality of the product we produce."

Uncle Rico's is the latest tenant in the rejuvenated complex now owned by Inland Mortgage Capital Corp. of Chicago. Inland had a vacant Friendly's restaurant on the grounds torn down, added several storefronts and parking space. It owns all of the plaza except for the namesake ShopRite supermarket. Other tenants in the square include LT’s Grill, Starbucks and TCBY, plus a variety of non-food enterprises.

Uncle Rico's formal address is 2309 Nott Street East. Phone: (518) 280-9544.

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