Written by Mayor of Farmingdale Ralph Ekstrand Thursday, 09 January 2014 00:00
Happy New Year everyone and welcome to the very first “From the Mayor’s Desk,” a new column in The Farmingdale Observer. We have much to announce and share in the Village of Farmingdale, in the year ahead, so stay tuned for new and exciting topics.
Let me begin the new year with some of the village’s accomplishments of the past year and where they stand.
• Construction of Jefferson Plaza, a $59 million dollar mixed-use development, began last November, and is estimated to be completed within 18 months. It is comprised of two locations, one on the West Side of Secatogue Ave and South Front Street that will be 115 rental apartments and 13,000 square feet of retail space, and another on the East side of Secatogue where a Hilton Hotel was planned for and later replaced by 39 rental apartments and 6,000 square feet of retail space.
• Staller Properties will develop on Main Street and Eastern Parkway. Both projects have received final approvals from the Village of Farmingdale and the groundbreaking is anticipated for late March 2014. The Main Street project will have 26 rental apartments with balconies overlooking Main Street and 3,000 square feet of retail space. The Eastern Parkway development will have 27 rental units and will adaptively reuse the existing historic brick building facing Eastern Parkway by converting this warehouse into 8 rental apartments, taking full advantage of its brick construction. It will be a very cool place to live.
• Federal Community Development Block Grant Funding rebuilding Main Street at minimal cost to the business owner. This program pays for 80% of the cost of the new Lights, Signs and Awnings for local businesses. We have completed approximately 20 store fronts with an additional 40 in cue. This is helping make Farmingdale’s Downtown “the place to be.” We can point to the increased occupancy of new stores on Main Street. Eighteen months ago there were over 20 empty storefronts on Main Street, today there are only three.
• County Funding of nearly $1 million dollars that was orchestrated by former County Legislator Joe Belesi to rebuild Main Street in order to provide for traffic calming and enhanced pedestrian safety. We want to thank Joe for all of his efforts on behalf of the residents of the Village of Farmingdale. This project will commence in the spring of 2014. Thanks again Joe and all of our best wishes.
There is much more going on and I will keep you updated in future columns. In the meantime, we look forward to continued success with revitalization in Farmingdale village and wish everyone a Happy and Healthy New Year. Hope to see you on Main Street.