PEEKSKILL, N.Y. – After several years of planning, the city is putting the call out for developers to take on its Lower South Street property.
The city has sent out a request for qualifications, or RFQ, for the 12.7-acre former industrial site on lower South Street, James Slaughter, director of economic development, said Monday.
"We want something showing a little creativity," Slaughter said. "Not drawing up a series of big-box stores and a sea of parking, but something that would create a new venue. We're looking to see what kinds of innovative ideas prospective developers might bring to the project."
Whatever development is eventually built on the property will be different from what already exists in the city, Slaughter said. The city plans for the project to emphasize commercial and retail uses, and specifically retail stores that won't compete with existing business districts.
"We want to have uses that complement the specialty retail and restaurants that we have in the downtown," Slaughter said.
The main goal is to create additional opportunities for Peekskill residents and nonresidents to do their shopping in the city, he said.
"In a three-mile radius from downtown, Peekskill has a disposable income of $629 million," Slaughter said. "We are only capturing about $53 million downtown, which is only 7.6 percent, which tells you that a lot of disposable income is going to other places."
The Lower South Street parcel is visible from Route 9 and is easily accessible from the Louisa Street and Welcher Avenue exits, and city officials said that makes it a prime commercial and retail location.
“This is a priority project for the city," Peekskill Mayor Mary Foster said in a statement released Monday. "This development will replace the old recycling facility and junkyard and create a destination center for businesses and stores. It will create employment opportunities for Peekskill residents, bring shoppers new to the area and generate additional tax revenue."
The city has also released requests for proposals, or RFPs, for properties at 1028 Main St. and 150 Washington St. The Main Street property is a former YMCA building that was partly demolished, while the Washington Street property was most recently the Capri II restaurant and catering building.
The RFQs for the Lower South Street project are due on Sept. 14, while the RFPs for 1028 Main St. and 150 Washington St. are due on Sept. 19 and Sept. 13, respectively. The requests can be viewed on the city's website here.