One of the most prominent vacant commercial sites in Northern Westchester could be getting a multi-million dollar facelift to transform it into a massive mixed-use building.
A proposal to transform Yorktown Green into a mixed-use development featuring 150 apartments, ground-level retail locations, and a new supermarket was introduced to the Town Board this week to much fanfare.
According to Olster Properties, the 15-acre development in the heart of Yorktown Heights on Downing Drive would include the demolition of the current 90,000-square-foot building that was the home of a defunct Kmart as part of the project
In its place would be a four-story U-shaped building that includes 84 one-bedroom and six two-bedroom residences, a small surrounding park, ground floor retail, and underground parking.
The idea is to make the development attractive to Millennials and empty-nesters, officials said. It is unclear what the going rate would be for the apartments.
“The concept of this is to provide alternatives to empty-nesters or young millennials,” Oster’s attorney Darius Chafizadeh said in a statement. “This would allow them to stay in town, or young ones to come back into your town and live here and be able to afford it without having to pay high property taxes.”
As part of the development, a new supermarket would replace the defunct Food Emporium building that has been vacant for nearly a decade, The Kmart has been out of business for more than two years as the company shuttered the doors of hundreds of locations amid a financial crunch.
“Throughout the retail world, there’s a rethinking of how retail spaces are designed to service the world,” Oster architect Matthew Jarmet stated. “This Kmart is empty because of e-commerce. What we see as planners is that many retail centers - and some very large shopping malls as well that we’re working on - are being repositioned to mixed use.”
According to Oster representatives, a formal application for Yorktown Green is in the final stages and is on track to be formally submitted to the Planning Board for approval in the coming weeks.
“This proposal recognizes the evolving economy that we are facing, especially e-commerce,” Yorktown Supervisor Matt Slater said. “Yorktown Green has languished for too long and I look forward to seeing more details about Oster’s proposal.
“It is a key property in many ways, not the least of which is its prominent location in the heart of town,” Slater added. “The commitment to a complete re-thinking and renewal of the property. This is very welcome news and yet another sign of the economic upswing we are working hard to see in our town.”
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