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Renaissance Agreement Expires [Poll]

Naugatuck officials still hope for downtown revitalization.

After five years and no construction in a proposed $707 million dollar Naugatuck downtown development project that was supposed to be built in four phases over several years, the agreement that gave the developer exclusive rights to construction expired Tuesday.

Now Naugatuck officials say they will continue to strive to redevelop the downtown, despite the setback in the Renaissance Place project.

“We remain committed to the concept of planned, smart growth in our downtown, and look forward to working together to ensure a bright and prosperous future for generations to come,” said Mayor Robert Mezzo and Jay Carlson, chairman of the Naugatuck Economic Development Corporation, in a joint statement on the mayor’s blog.

Naugatuck first signed the agreement with Fairfield developer Alexius C. Conroy on May 8, 2007, giving Conroy exclusive development rights over the private and public venture.

While the borough has since held up its end of the deal — by conducting plans, reviews and rehabilitating the Parcel C plot of land in downtown Naugatuck — Conroy has not succeeded in securing funding to start construction.

According to an article in The Republican-American, the borough has spent at least $2 million preparing for the project “in addition to legal and administrative costs.” Read the Republican’s article here. (Note: A subscription is required to access the full article).

In their statement, Mezzo and Carlson addressed the expiration of the agreement by noting that the borough could still work with Conroy if he brings a proposal forward for development. But they went on to say that, “as a community we need to move forward and explore what other options exist.”

"While neither the Board of Mayor and Burgesses nor the NEDC is willing to extend the development rights, we have expressed a willingness to work with Mr. Conroy if he brings forth a viable project or portion thereof which is consistent with the original vision," the statement reads. "We cannot, however, recommend any extension of the development agreement which would grant any exclusive rights to Renaissance Place, LLC or any other company affiliated with Conroy Development Company..."

The exclusivity of the development agreement with Conroy has prevented Naugatuck from soliciting and/or entertaining any other proposals not brought forth by Renaissance Place, LLC, according to the statement.

citizen May 10, 2012 at 05:49 PM
Movie theater Indoor sports complex with skating Medical center (of some sort) Nice restaurants (we have 2 already, Milestone and Jesse Camiles, but teh more the better) Starbucks
citizen May 10, 2012 at 05:52 PM
Another idea would be to have a branch of some major college move or open here. Very convenient access from highways and would create more of a business need for stores and small eateries. One thing we don't need is the negative attitudes.
Brian May 13, 2012 at 08:00 PM
An interesting idea is to turn the upstairs of the shops in downtown Church St. into up-scale apartments for people out of town in the Fairfield County/NYC area who don't want to deal with the insane taxes/rents that come with living in those areas. Also if the town were to sell itself as more of an interesting place to live with a focus on getting a younger, more vibrant crowd in here, things would move a lot faster I think. Every time someone asks me where I'm from and I say Naugatuck, they say "Oh, I'm sorry" and I unfortunately and honestly have to respond with, "Me too". I hate having to do that! The biggest complaint going to school here is that in order to enjoy myself, I have to drive to Waterbury or farther away to have a good time instead of having a place to go in my own town. More of these big box, chain stores is not the solution to making our town a better place to live, if you want those, hop on Route 8 to Waterbury and have your fill. Naugatuck is a small place with a rich history and beautiful landscape and should be treated as a unique destination, not an uninspired wasteland!
Zoombawa June 02, 2012 at 06:00 AM
Totally from the start it was a no-go. Someone should have kabashed the idea after the market took a dive, economic downturn, unemployment, etc. I think a Mosque for my Fellow Friends is in order.
Zoombawa June 02, 2012 at 06:02 AM
Leave everything the way it is. That is a positive!

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