Pelham Examiner

Pelham Examiner

Pelham Examiner

Village of Pelham board votes to borrow $3.96 million for municipal center, parking garage, vehicles

Artist rendering of rebuilt parking lot at Sixth Avenue and Third Street,

The Village of Pelham Board of Trustees voted unanimously July 11 to issue $2.78 million in bonds for the new municipal center now under construction, $1 million for improvements to the parking garage at Sixth Avenue and Third Street and $176,000 for police vehicles.

While village officials have repeatedly said the developer of the Pelham Green (formerly Pelham House) apartment project is financing construction of the municipal center at no cost to the village, Mayor Chance Mullen told the regular board meeting the Village of Pelham must pay for security, information technology, furniture and other equipment for the building that will bring together all of Pelham’s departments.

The $2.78 million price tag for the village government has not been previously mentioned in public statements.

Summer has become a time for the village board to make big financial moves. For the third consecutive year, the trustees have approved issuing bonds during the quiet summer months—when even the village board itself is on a holiday schedule. Last year, the board voted in July to sell $1.1 million in notes for work on the village’s sewer systems, while in July and August 2021 the trustees approved borrowing $2.36 million to buy four trucks that would be the foundation for inhouse garbage collection. (The final public hearing and final vote on the Pelham Green project were also held in August of last year.)

Under law, the resolutions to issue $2.78 million and $1 million in bonds are subject to permissive referendums, which means residents protesting against the bond resolutions can request either be submitted to voters by filing a petition with the village clerk within 30 days from their July 11 adoption.

According to the village’s financial statements for the year ended May 31, 2022, Pelham had total short-term and long-term debt of $6.24 million.

Under the deal with the development team led by Pelham resident Patrick Normoyle, the developer is building a five-story rental building at Fifth Avenue and Third Street (201 Fifth Ave.), as well as the new municipal center to house village hall and the village police and fire stations. Normoyle’s company received village land and zoning breaks in exchange for funding construction of the muni center at 200 Fifth Avenue.

The parking lot before and after the proposed work.

During the work session before the board’s regular meeting, trustees heard about proposed improvements for the existing two-level parking garage located at Sixth Avenue and Third Street next to the site of the new village center. The improvements aim to bolster safety and security, said Peter Gaito, head of the architecture firm Peter F. Gaito and Associates.

The project comes two years after the village learned the parking lot’s continuing deterioration posed a significant safety risk and immediate action was needed to prevent structural failure.

Mullen said that it was not financially feasible to completely tear the parking garage down, though New York State required the garage to be significantly improved for safety reasons. The garage renovations will also include aesthetic improvements.

The redesigned structure will cater to the needs of different entities within the village. The first level’s parking spaces will be used by the police department. Meanwhile, there will be a ramp from the street to directly access the second level, which will maximize the number of available parking spaces, said Gaito.

“We see this as a perfect opportunity to revitalize this corner of the village,” said Gaito. “The potential here is immense, and there are a lot of things in play.”

The renovation plan includes various enhancements meant to make the garage into a modern, functional space. With a new parking layout, a fresh facade, and a relocated first-level entrance, the proposed update promises a more efficient flow of traffic and improved accessibility. Additionally, the project will replace the sidewalks and landscape around the building.

The renovated garage will have a connection to the new municipal center.

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About the Contributor
Gillian Ho, Deputy Managing Editor
Gillian Ho is a senior at the Horace Mann School. She has been a Pelham resident since 2016 and has written for the Pelham Examiner since its start in 2018. In school, Gillian writes for her school's newspaper and actively participates in public forum debate. She hopes to pursue journalism in college. During her free time, she fences in and out of school.

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    Bryan CoverJul 26, 2023 at 9:16 pm

    Where are the trees surrounding the parking structure as was promised during approval?
    Something that was promised as no cost sure seems to have a hefty price tag.