Design plans for at least one part of the Storrs Center project are in hand and agreements have been signed. With that, developers of the project hope to “be in the ground” in the coming weeks.
Tuesday night, all parties involved in the Storrs Center project came together to bring residents up to speed on the development’s progress thus far.
Officials from the Mansfield Downtown Partnership, Storrs Center officials from the town, University of Connecticut, LeylandAlliance and Education Realty Trust (EDR) listened as Gregory Padick, Mansfield’s planning director, revealed the status of several of the projects that are currently underway for the first phases of the project.
Over the past few months, the partnership has secured design plans for Phases 1A and 1B as well as a signed development agreement between Mansfield, Storrs Center Alliance and EDR, and developers said they hope to "be in the ground" in the next 30-45 days.
Most recently, Padick authorized a zoning permit for the buildings in Phases 1A and 1B, which will be located to the north and south of Dog Lane. Phase 1A will include approximately 27,000 square feet of commercial space and 127 apartment units, while Phase 1B will include 42,000 square feet of commercial space and 160 apartments, according to developers.
The development team said that it is currently working on applying for building permits for the first phases of the project, including the Town Square and Village Street, as well as receiving bids for the "remediation and demolition" of the former University of Connecticut Publications building located on Dog Lane.
Padick said that the redesign of Storrs Road is 90 percent completed, and that construction could begin there later this year after the state Department of Transportation gives its seal of approval. Padick said that commuters should not be affected by the road enhancements, given that the road is wide enough to accommodate construction.
Padick said that designs for the parking garage and intermodal center are also in the process of being drawn up and are awaiting local zoning permit approval.
Cynthia van Zelm, the executive director of the Mansfield Downtown Partnership, said that the partnership is interested in employing local talent to get involved with the project, and has scheduled a job fair for May 12 at 7 p.m. in the .
Below is a construction time-line as provided by the partnership:
- Demolition of buildings on Phase 1A site: May 2011
- Construction of Phase 1A buildings: May 2011 – August 2012
- Dog Lane Construction: July 2011 – November 2012
- Storrs Road Enhancements: August 2011 – April 2012
- Parking Garage Construction: August 2011 – August 2012
- Intermodal Transportation Center Construction: February 2012 – August 2012