Web Sites, Documents and Articles >> Hartford Courant News Articles >

City Seeks Buyer For 4-Acre Main Street Parcel

June 2, 2005
By JEFFREY B. COHEN, Courant Staff Writer

Hartford officials want to sell a 4-acre piece of Main Street land that has been the site of a home, a hotel, possibly a railroad spur, and is now a vacant trapezoid, they announced Wednesday.

The land at 1450 Main St. - across the way from the new Belden Street residential development, up the street from the city's future public safety complex, not far from the MetroCenter shopping complex at Main and Pavilion streets - is another of the city's attempts to revitalize the Clay-Arsenal neighborhood.

"I love it when a plan comes together," said Mayor Eddie A. Perez, explaining that the neighborhood plan has been long in the making. "This is going to be a key investment. My hope is that we'll get a significant market proposal ... that is a little bit out of the box."

The city wants the land, which is assessed at about $260,000, to be a "mixed use" development, with a minimum of 25,000 square feet of new construction, a main entrance on Main Street, a "consistent visual identity," and more.

It could be residential, it could be commercial, but it will most likely be retail, Perez and his staff said.

The land isn't big enough for a "big box" store, said John Palmieri, the city's director of development services. But it is big enough for, say, an anchor drug store and a few smaller retailers.

"In the best of all worlds, though, we'd like to get a proposal that is both residential and retail," he said. But, given that the North End is a neighborhood in transition, the city must be flexible, he said.

"We've got to be careful about demanding too much from the development community," Palmieri said.

Perez calls this cluster of intersections including Main Street, Belden Street, and Albany Avenue a "gateway" - to Clay-Arsenal for those heading north, to the city's downtown for those heading south.

"There's been a great deal of investment right there in those three and half blocks," Perez said.

"And there's a little bit of healthy speculation on some of the private parcels that are there, which I think are good signs."

Perez added that he will look to obtain the best price for the property to generate revenue for the city, but he also is looking for the right type of use. "If it needs a little bit of subsidy ... I think we're willing to do this," he said.

Finally, the property will likely need some sort of environmental remediation, Palmieri said, adding that the site's contamination would likely make it better suited for retail development than residential use.

Responses to the request for proposals are due no later than July 29.

Reprinted with permission of the Hartford Courant. To view other stories on this topic, search the Hartford Courant Archives at http://www.courant.com/archives.
| Last update: September 25, 2012 |
Powered by Hartford Public Library  

Includes option to search related Hartford sites.

Advanced Search
Search Tips

Can't Find It? Have a Question?