If you’ve been to Pleasantville recently, you can’t miss all the changes happening! This central Westchester small town still has its friendly, walkable village vibe, but now there are more places to live, shop, dine and work than ever before.
Instead of seeing mom-and-pop businesses close due to an obsolescence created by Amazon and other online mega-sites, the Pleasantville community has supported their small business owners so they are thriving and new ones are joining them.
With the development of any area, the chicken-or-the-egg question often arises. What comes first, new housing and more residents, or thriving businesses to support them? In Pleasantville, the local businesses, government and the town’s chamber have stayed tuned in to what today’s residents and consumers are looking for to keep the downtown vibrant, while at the same time supporting development of new housing. Recently one of the country’s top builders, Toll Brothers, opened a newly constructed townhouse development called The Enclave at Pleasantville. Units there are selling like hotcakes, with 50 of 61 sold or in contract. This has been followed by the construction of new luxury rental housing in the village, walking distance to all shops and Metro North. Two rental developments are being built now, with two more to follow soon.
The Jacob Burns Film Center (JBFC) on Manville Road in the village is a big draw, with exclusive movie screenings, special events and children’s programming. The Burns draws people from all over the county, helping to support other area businesses. New restaurants are opening at a steady pace, including Pubstreet, Southern Table and Falafel Taco, among others. And the Farmer’s Market, held every Saturday, has become renowned for its number and variety of vendors. This July, the 14th Annual Pleasantville Music Festival will attract several thousand attendees for a full-day of music, putting Pleasantville on the map to many more and from further afield.
"We look forward to the growth here. A great deal of our business comes from the local area - Pleasantville, Chappaqua, Briarcliff, Armonk. We're hopeful that new retail on Washington Ave. will bring even more shoppers to the street," said Elizabeth Calderone, owner of TapeMeasure Design.
One of the newest businesses in town is ERA Insite Realty Services. ERA Insite merged with the former Century 21 Haviland office that occupied the space next to the JBFC for over 30 years, completely renovating the space and adding agents from its former Thornwood location in addition to the Century 21 agents who all stayed on after the merger. The community response has been terrific! “We are excited to be part of such a thriving and supportive community. The foot traffic in downtown is perfect for our business. There is such a buzz about Pleasantville’s quality of life that makes people want to be a part of it. This is exactly what today’s home buyers are looking for, so the growth gives strength to the area’s home values as well,” said Debra Budetti, co-founder and owner of the firm.