After a decade in the making, the is finally ready to take off now that Mount Vernon-based Di Marino Brothers Contracting, Inc. has been awarded an approximately $1.27 million bid to start work on the much-anticipated upgrade to sidewalks, trees and curbs along Palmer Avenue from the train station to .
One of the recent projects completed by Di Marino Brothers was the $2.4 million renovation of a football field in New Rochelle’s Flower Park, according to the Construction Equipment Guide website.
“We hope to break ground between now and Labor Day,” said Mayor Anne McAndrews about the Streetscape project, which is slated to take five months to complete.
And, because the Palmer Avenue Streetscape is designed to benefit the village’s business district, its construction schedule has been carefully modified to allow for minimum interference to local stores.
“We are making every attempt to make this disruption as palatable as possible to our merchants,” said McAndrews.
But some residents were hopeful that the project’s reach would not be limited to Palmer Avenue.
Syrette Grant, a resident of 52 Wendt Ave. and former chair of the Village Planning Committee, said that ice cream containers from Red Mango and other detritus from nearby businesses on Palmer Avenue littered her street on a daily basis.
“I think there’s another piece of the healthy business district and I think that piece has not been addressed,” she said.
Grant and her husband, Frank, have taken on the task of cleaning up the litter on a daily basis, she said, because no one else had stepped up to help.
“People tend not to clean it up but they’re observing this and it does not look like what we would like the image of Larchmont to look like.”
Although McAndrews was supportive of the clean-up as a potential “Phase II” of the Streetscape Project, she said paying for it would be a challenge.
“If we can frame this into the new statewide initiative of bringing business to New York…there may be some openings,” she said, referring to the potential for grant funding.
The board brainstormed several potential solutions to the problem including putting out “no littering” signs; holding a village clean-up day for Wendt Avenue modeled after the Sheldrake River clean-up day; putting together a litter task force and campaign and asking Red Mango to put trash cans in parking lots on Wendt Avenue.
“It’s all about personal responsibility. It’s hard to believe 40 years after the birth of the environmental movement, people are still littering like this,” said Board member John Komar in disbelief.
“We really have to have sort of a unified, focused issue on the debris and the cleanliness of that area back there, because it’s really awful,” said McAndrews.
The next Board of Trustees meeting will be on Sept. 5 at 7:30 p.m. There will be a public hearing on water rate increases and a public hearing on an assessment of the streets and curbing portion of the Palmer Avenue Streetscape Project.