Waterfront, Downtown and Transit Cluster Development All on the Table
New Rochelle’s vision for the future is clear: to be a major player in Westchester’s and New York’s regional economy. In the past few weeks, city officials have heard dynamic new proposals for the development of its Echo Bay Waterfront, as well as announced a request for qualifications for a master developer who would take on the redesign and development of two clusters in the city’s downtown area. In his announcement, Mayor Noam Bramson called the City of New Rochelle “the next big opportunity.” WCA President Marissa Brett, agreed, noting the city’s tremendous assets…
“New Rochelle is home to historic neighborhoods and a strong urban core, diverse commercial spaces, three higher education institutions, a beautiful shoreline on the Long Island Sound, and great transportation access, with major highways and Metro North and Amtrak stops,” said Brett, who also heads up the BLUEPRINT for Westchester, the WCAs aggressive economic development initiative. “The City already presents a terrific package for investors and developers, and we can’t wait to see what kind of new investment New Rochelle will attract. ”
The City of New Rochelle is calling for plans that would create mixed-use developments around the New Rochelle Transportation Center and along its downtown Main Street corridor. Recent studies of these areas commission by the city indicate up to 1.5 million square feet of office space, 500,000 square feet of retail space and 2,000 new apartments could be built downtown—key components of smart growth for Westchester’s cities, according to Brett.
The City's vision vision incorporates housing, retail, commercial, office and hotel space, centered around pedestrian-friendly areas and access to great transportation—the kind of development long-supported by the BLUEPRINT for Westchester, noted Brett.
"By creating convenient places for people to live, shop, eat, and work, the city will attract new business and provide affordable housing and recreation for young professionals in Westchester. New Rochelle can become a key growth area in Westchester—and, as the cost of business goes up in Manhattan, more competitive in our regional economy,” Brett said.
In his announcement, Mayor Bramson said the city was proposing a type of public-private partnership that would include a development agreement encompassing multiple sites, and allow for an earlier evaluation of planning concepts, a move Ms. Brett applauded.
“The WCA is supports the use of public-private partnerships as a way to merge interests and resources, move smart development forward, and monetize under-used assets in our cities,” she said. “We look forward to working together with all of our municipal leaders on sharing ideas around P3s and how they might be used to revitalize Westchester’s urban and suburban areas.”