New Milford Mayor On Riverfront Project: A Lot of People Are Excited
The New Milford Riverfront Revitalization Project is an ambitious, long-term plan to turn the waterfront into a wonderland for all seasons.
While any grand project has a lot of vital phases, the hardest part is usually convincing the public that such a change is worth it. New Milford Mayor Pete Bass joined the I-95 Morning Show on Wednesday (8/30/23) and we asked him to get us up to speed.
Lou: We know a lot of time and energy has been put into the Riverfront Project, tell people what it is and where the project stands.
Mayor Bass: "Yeah, the Riverfront Revitalization Project we're looking to move our public works facility from where it currently is over to the Century Brass property which is about half a mile down the road, the green space that is currently there. Moving the softball fields that are there to a community ball fields and then in that area have a splash pad that will convert to an ice skating rink in the winter. Expand some tennis courts, the skate park, have a band shell for concerts down there and additional green space for people to enjoy the riverfront. And then, where the DPW facility was currently looking to make some commercial space there to tie into the riverfront to the downtown."
Lou: Now it's really ambitious and I think to folks like us it makes the town sound more fun but is there any opposition to the project and if so, why?
Mayor Bass: "I think there are some people that may have heard rumors that we were going to take away the green space or that we would make it look what it looks like comparative to the rest of the downtown. But I think the more people we can spread the news to and they hear what it actually is, a lot of people are very, very excited about it."
Riverfront Revitalization in Bullets:
- Move Public Works out of the area
- Move the ball fields out of the area a while replacing them with better ones on Route 7.
- Install a splash pad/ice skating rink
- Install a band shell for live performances
- Expand the skate park
- Enhance Basketball/Tennis Courts
- Create more green space
- Smooth out the Big Hill for sleigh riding
- Add more shops and restaurants
As we mentioned in our June 2023 interview, the Mayor is integral in this process but he's part of a much larger group of people working to make it happen. According to the New Milford Riverfront Revitalization Report:
"The plan builds on the input gathered from more than 20 stakeholder interviews, three public workshops with more than 400 participants (digital and in person), multiple design team charrettes, consultation with the New Milford Town Council, and guidance from the Riverfront Revitalization Committee and Brownfield Area-Wide Revitalization Planning Grant Committee who met regularly over the year-long-plus process."
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