Larchmont to Develop New Retail Plan

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The old “Larchmont Store” on Palmer Ave. has since been renovated, but is still vacant after many years.

 

The developer who recently transformed a New York City subway pedestrian area into an appealing corridor of retail shops will be one of the principals behind a strategy to transform the Larchmont business district.

Susan Fine and partner Jill Hayman of Fine Development Partners have been retained by the Village to come up with a plan for the beleaguered  commercial districts.

“Downtown Larchmont has suffered increased vacancies in recent years,” said Mayor Lorraine Walsh, “that threaten the vibrant spirit of our Village and place hardship on remaining businesses.”

Walsh tells theLoop the Village will pay the group $4,000/month, with an expected  5-month engagement period.

Over the summer the consultants will explore with store owners and residents ideas such as pop-up stores and community events.

The full Press Release is below.

 

 

14 thoughts on “Larchmont to Develop New Retail Plan

  1. I have a business in Pelham and live in Harrison. I’m in Larchmont and Mamaroneck often. Parking is one issue. Why is anyone required to pay to park on top of the already insane taxes we pay? Many downtowns are being reduced to hairdressers, banks and restaurants. Look at Rye. They had to put a moratorium on banks. The harsh reality is that more and more people shop online. Convenience trumps all even though by doing so they’re crippling their hometowns and reducing jobs. I thought once the malls started fading people would start shopping in their downtowns again but that isn’t the case. Different times. My parents purchased their insurance and appliances from former HS classmates. My pediatrician was a classmate of my parents. That’s how it was done then. People TALK about supporting their community but very few act on it.

    • I also own a Business in Pelham and I live in Pelham..I couldn’t agree more with your statements..on cardboard trash pickup Days the curbs are strewn with nothing but Amazon Boxes,people TALK about supporting local Business but for the most part that’s all it is.
      So when the Mothers bring their kids in looking for a Summer Job or a part time Job after School ,or charitable organizations come in looking for a donation and I say “I can’t afford to”
      That’s the reason plain and simple.
      In my 4 years being in Business in Pelham 20 Different Stores have went out of Business or left..just recently lost another Business 3 Stores down from me
      Sad and Disgraceful !

  2. I am not quite sure how this will work out but I certainly hope it helps. As someone who lives in Larchmont you have to walk the talk. You can’t ride around town with “SHOP LOCAL” bumper stickers and only go into stores a few times a year. I do 90% of my shopping in town. I find parking each and every time (not saying we shouldn’t do something about selective enforcement). I think speaking to Mamaroneck about that upper train lot which ALWAYS has empty spots would be a great first step. It is silly that you need a permit to park there. Put meters and allow for town/shoppers parking there. Maybe take a section to keep for permit/town only for the train since it is limited to our residents.
    Some rents are reasonable – others astronomical. I also think we need more variety. Larchmont Ave by BPR is overrun with hair salons. I don’t even know how they all stay open. I hope some survey is done with the town to see what businesses aren’t there that people would like to see. I am rooting for Larchmont whatever it takes!

  3. No longer living in Larchmont………….. But 1. free parking at train station weekend/night. High end stores are not the answer(just a reason to window shop). Create no car days(street mall) and not just once a year. eg. every 3rd week. Bless you all Charlie Seward

  4. I spoke to Lee at Wendy Gee around the time it was closing. He said , contrary to general belief, that the problem was not the rents, in fact said he had a good landlord. He said told me that people’s shopping habits had changed gradually over the years. They bought on line, or in the city after work and there was less sidewalk traffic as fewer parents with strollers stopped by. I’m sure the rents aren’t lower in the other affluent communities around the county, it’s time for professional help in devising a realistic plan. A town wide survey would be a great start. Larchmont’s downtown is worth saving!

  5. To the both of you, you’re points are all valid. I personally don’t think the Village needs to spend $20,000 to figure out the problem from an outside source that’s going to “poll” the merchants.
    As a merchant on Chatsworth Avenue, I pay one of the highest rents on the block. I pay all increases from property taxes, town & village tax, insurance increases, etc. There is barely any meat left on the bone. At this point I am considering relocating the business. It’s just not worth the aggravation. On the flip side, I have great customers but I have to think about me.
    There are three or four issues that have to be CORRECTED before any outsiders try & bring in pop up stores. The first issue is parking, the second issue is parking, the third issue is parking, & the final issue is selective parking enforcement by our esteemed Parking enforcement officers.
    I’m sure that I could come up with a great plan, after operating a business here for six years that would rival the $20,000.00 investment that the village is going to waste on an expert. I’d be willing to do it for free. Maybe I would get a tax rebate for donating my time. ( probably not )
    But it still comes down to this. Shoppers will not come to the business district in droves if there is no parking. I hear it from customers seven days a week. I look through my floor to ceiling windows & I see who gets parking tickets & who doesn’t. I even have dozens & dozens of pictures of the same cars that never get tickets. This is the root of the problem. Without tackling this problem first, any & all $20,000.00 ideas will fail. ( hate to sound like a pessimist, but this is a fact )

    Robbie Goldberg
    Larchmont Gourmet Deli
    145 Chatsworth

    • Selective enforcement is a major issue, as is the fact that the merchants and their employees hog much of the street parking. I sent an email on this topic to the Mayor just a few days ago. That is a problem that is easily remedied by the Village itself, a remedy that can commence tomorrow.

  6. Long overdue..other towns have weathered losing businesses much better..eg: New Canaan and Greenwich Ct to name two. What to do they know we don’t and what are they doing that we aren

  7. I hope something can be done. I don’t think this exploration is a waste at all…but:

    I spoke with a former business owner(s). Several issues sited.
    1. Rents generally are too high and
    2. landlords often make tenants responsible for building repairs (broken pipes etc)
    3. landlords are getting tax credits/abatement if stores have been empty for a while. Generally we are rewarding/handing landlords money to keep rents above a sustainable amount and stores empty. Tenants are leaving for nearby towns where deals are better.

  8. Dumb idea. Town needs to mandate rents be lowered. They are NOT sustainable. This is a total waste of money.

      • seriously! mandate that rents be lowered? how ignorant can people be?
        sure, and while we’re at it, let’s mandate sunshine and rainbows and that everyone gets a shiny new car.
        sometimes, i wonder if humanity is too stupid to survive.

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