JEFFERSON VALLEY, NY - A cadre of state and local officials broke ground today on Phase I of renovations of the Jefferson Valley ("JV") Mall, following years of planning and approvals at the town and state level. State Senator Terrence Murphy, who six years ago, kick-started the process as a town councilman in Yorktown, celebrated today's activities with Yorktown Town Supervisor Michael Grace, and Council members Greg Bernard and Tom Diana, who have been at the forefront of the campaign to upgrade the mall.
"Today marks the culmination of more than six years of hard work on behalf of the residents of Yorktown and the Hudson Valley," Senator Murphy said. "The people of Yorktown entrusted us to see this project through and I am proud that we delivered for them. During my last days a local councilman here, before I took office in the Senate, I was proud to approve the final measures necessary to begin this $45 million project that will spur the economic growth Yorktown needs, creating a number of good paying jobs and reducing the tax burden on the residents of this town."
After Murphy was elected to the town board in 2009, Simon properties proposed a $45 million upgrade to the JV Mall, which required numerous public hearings, zoning changes and other local ordinances, many of which he sponsored or seconded. In October 2013, final approval was given under Supervisor Grace.
Simon sold the mall to its subsidiary, WP Glimcher, who spent the past several months removing asbestos from the vacant movie theater in order for the process to begin.
"Jefferson Valley Mall is excited to announce the kick-off of this development project. We have been a staple in this community for more than 30 years and this investment by WP Glimcher signifies our vision for continued success," said Roberto Luciano, mall manager at Jefferson Valley Mall. "Further we appreciate the continued support of the Town of Yorktown as this much-anticipated project comes to fruition."
Today's kick-off for Phase I involves the demolition of the old theater and is expected to take about two months. Phase II will begin immediately thereafter, and includes exterior façade renovations, landscape enhancements, and construction of a new entrance along Route 6, which is expected to be coupled with State traffic enhancements, Senator Murphy said.
Eric DiBartolo, president of the Yorktown Chamber of Commerce said, "The elected officials assembled here today have partnered with the business community to do the heavy lifting to get the JV Mall redevelopment off the ground. We expect it to once again become an economic engine for Yorktown and the surrounding communities."
The project itself is expected to be an economic boon for the entire region, noted John Testa, the minority leader of the Westchester County Board of Legislators. "This mall is conveniently located at the nexus of Route 6 and the Taconic State Parkway, and it is at the centerpiece of what makes our area a desirable place to live," he said.
Yorktown Supervisor Michael Grace said, "The spectacular renovations that are planned will not only create a lush and inviting environment both inside and out, it will make Yorktown a destination that is once again open for business."
Yorktown Council member Greg Bernard said, "When coupled with the other new projects that this board has streamlined approvals for, we will finally be getting parcels back on the tax rolls that will improve our commercial tax base and lower the burden on residential property owners."
Yorktown Council member Tom Diana said, "In just over a year the mall will look very different than it does today, with outside facing facades and exciting new restaurants and facilities. I'm proud to have worked with Senator Murphy to make this a reality.
Ed Lachterman, president of the Yorktown Lions Club said, "Senator Murphy, Supervisor Grace, Legislator Testa and Council members Diana and Bernard have partnered with the business community to give us a mall fit for the 21st century. I'm excited to see it come to fruition as a destination that all local organizations can enjoy."
According to an August 2015 project overview, targeted tenants include Chico's, Vera Bradley, Michael Kors, White House Black Market, Starbucks, Clarks, J. Jill, Teavana, Chipotle, Sephora and Buffalo Wild Wings, which Murphy and others are lobbying hard to attract. Dick's Sporting Goods was recently announced as a new 50,000 square-foot anchor in the area where construction began today, and is expected to open by Spring 2017.