City Notes
Sale of waterfront park brings The Haven a step closer

Mayor Nancy R. Rossi heralds the sale of the city-owned Bayview Park property to The Haven Group LLC by presenting a $257,500 check on behalf of the developer to Finance Director Ronald Cicatelli on Friday at City Hall. Joining them are, from left, city Treasurer Michael P. Last, Planning and Development Commissioner Fred A. Messore, state Reps. Charles J. Ferraro, R-West Haven, and Michael A. DiMassa, D-West Haven, and city Corporation Counsel Lee Tiernan. When completed, The Haven, a $200 million, 261,182-square-foot luxury outlet center, will cover 26 waterfront acres that will feature dozens of upscale retail shops, restaurants, a promenade and a 200-seat amphitheater. (City Photo/Michael P. Walsh)

Sale of waterfront park brings The Haven a step closer

WEST HAVEN, Nov. 9, 2018 — Mayor Nancy R. Rossi heralded the sale of the city-owned Bayview Park property to the developer of The Haven for $257,500 during a check presentation Friday at City Hall.

Rossi presented the check on behalf of The Haven Group LLC to Finance Director Ronald Cicatelli in the third-floor City Council chambers as city and state officials looked on.

Joining the mayor and Cicatelli were state Reps. Charles J. Ferraro, R-West Haven, and Michael A. DiMassa, D-West Haven, as well as city Treasurer Michael P. Last, Corporation Counsel Lee Tiernan and Planning and Development Commissioner Fred A. Messore.

After weeks of negotiations, the city and The Haven Group agreed to terms on the sale of the .87-acre parcel at Water and Main streets for $257,500. The price represents an amount slightly higher than the appraised value, said Rossi, who thanked the developer for agreeing to the terms.

Although a development agreement between West Haven and The Haven Group more than three years ago included the sale of the waterfront park, the city was obligated to resolve several issues related to the property’s title before the sale could take place.

“One of my first actions as mayor was to demand that the corporation counsel do what was necessary, as quickly as possible, to complete the sale of this park because The Haven Group told me it was a necessary component for the development of the upscale waterfront shopping experience,” Rossi said. “The Haven Group has made clear that the sale of the park by the city of West Haven was necessary before any development would take place.”

The Haven Group received site plan approval from the city Planning and Zoning Commission in July, which included sidewalk improvements to the neighborhood.

Two months later, the state Bond Commission approved $5 million in funding for the reconstruction of Elm Street — the future entrance of the $200 million, 261,182-square-foot luxury outlet center.

The National Park Service granted the city relief from its Urban Park and Recreation Recovery grant obligations concerning Bayview Park in August.

West Haven will now make improvements to the city-owned park on Contact Drive, off South Street in West Shore, as part of the approval with the federal agency.

The Park Service’s approval process required the preparing and filing of an application package earlier this year with its Philadelphia office, along with compliance with the National Historic Preservation Act and approvals from the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Further consultation and negotiation with the Park Service this year was completed by city staff, without the use of private consultants, Rossi said.

The Haven Group also recently agreed to reimburse West Haven for the cost of city attorney fees for the project as part of the negotiated sale, she said.

After a comprehensive review, Bayview Park was not found to have any significant historic value. Only a half-acre of the parcel is land that can be developed, city officials said.

Access to the waterfront by the public will remain as part of the proposed development.

Rossi said the project is a great example of a public-private partnership.

State and federal funds for the site included a $200,000 environmental cleanup in 2007, a $2 million bulkhead reconstruction in 2012 and a $2 million brownfield cleanup in 2016, as well as the recent state bond money. In addition, a real estate property tax abatement agreement was negotiated in 2015.

“All of our state delegation, the governor, the federal delegation and other public partners have been helpful and essential, and we are grateful,” Rossi said. “For its part, the developer has spent in excess of $32 million on the project since it was first pitched to then-Mayor John M. Picard in 2012 by Sheldon M. Gordon, who is now deceased.”

When completed, the project will cover 26 waterfront acres that will feature dozens of luxury retail shops, restaurants, a promenade and a 200-seat amphitheater. It is expected to generate between 800 and 1,200 jobs and several million dollars in municipal tax revenue and fees.

Bayview Park

Bayview Park at Water and Main streets overlooking New Haven Harbor. (City Photo/Michael P. Walsh)

Veterans Day tribute

The Veterans Walk of Honor in Bradley Point Park. (City Photo/Michael P. Walsh, File)

Walk of Honor is site of Veterans Day tribute Sunday

WEST HAVEN, Nov. 9, 2018 — The city and the West Haven Veterans Council will hold a Veterans Day tribute at 10:45 a.m. Sunday on the Veterans Walk of Honor in Bradley Point Park.

All veterans are invited to participate in the annual ceremony, which will feature remarks from Mayor Nancy R. Rossi and Steve Carney, vice president and treasurer of the Veterans Council, on behalf of council President Dave Ricci.

Mayoral aide Ruth G. Torres will serve as the master of ceremonies.

The event will begin with a presentation of the colors by the West Haven Police Color Guard and a flag-raising by the West Haven Fire Department Honor Guard. It will follow with the national anthem and “God Bless America” by West Haven High School sophomore Nora E. Mullins and opening and closing prayers by Sean P. Ronan, senior vice commander of Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 9422.

The tribute will also include a bell-ringing at 11 a.m. and taps played by former West Shore Fire Department Lt. Kevin McKeon.

Veterans Day, formerly Armistice Day, is celebrated on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, marking the anniversary of the armistice that ended World War I in 1918.

In commemoration of the armistice’s centennial, Rossi will issue a proclamation declaring “Bells of Peace: World War I Remembrance Day” in West Haven.

To coincide with the solemn ceremony, the Veterans Council will officially launch the 12th phase of its popular Brick Campaign.

In November 2006, the council began the first of 12 campaigns selling bricks to memorialize veterans on the 100-yard Walk of Honor between the William A. Soderman and Vietnam Veterans memorials.

The bricks, which cost $75, have charcoal lettering for personalized messages.

More than 2,650 bricks have been installed so far, including 56 for the 11th phase, which was dedicated May 26.

Download a Brick Application.

Applications, due March 15, are also available in the mayor’s office at City Hall, 355 Main St. For details, call 203-937-3510.

Webster Bank

Workshop for first-time homebuyers at Webster Bank on Nov. 16

WEST HAVEN, Nov. 9, 2018 — Webster Bank, 524 Campbell Ave., will hold a first-time homebuyers workshop from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Nov. 16.

The workshop, in cooperation with the West Haven Community Development Administration, will discuss CDA’s down payment assistance program for first-time homebuyers.

To qualify for the forgivable loan program, applicants must buy a single-family house or condominium in West Haven and live in the home for five years. The loan is abated 20 percent annually and forgiven after the fifth year.

Eligibility for assistance is based on the income and number of members of an applicant’s household, according to guidelines of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Applicants must provide 3 percent of the purchase price from their own funds, and CDA will match $2 for every dollar up to $7,500.

Speaker will discuss 2019 Medicare Open Enrollment

Speaker to discuss 2019 Medicare Open Enrollment at senior center

WEST HAVEN, Nov. 9, 2018 — A representative from the Agency on Aging of South Central Connecticut will discuss the 2019 Medicare Open Enrollment from 12:30-1:30 p.m. Nov. 20 at the Allingtown/West Haven Senior Center, 201 Noble St.

Attendees will learn about any changes and plan offerings for next year.


Deadline extended for flood plain easement funding for Beach St. area

WEST HAVEN, Nov. 9, 2018 — In the aftermath of Tropical Storm Irene and Superstorm Sandy, the U.S. Agriculture Department has authorized assistance through the Emergency Watershed Protection Floodplain Easements Program.

The program, managed by USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service, or NRCS, aims to buy permanent land rights to properties to mitigate the effects of future storms. Participation in the program is voluntary.

Federal Emergency Management Agency and Sandy Surge flood maps indicate that some properties in the Beach Street neighborhood of West Haven may have been flooded during one or both of those weather events, and that some landowners may be eligible to enroll in the program.

Eligible landowners will be paid a one-time purchase price fee, based on neighborhood historic comparable sales as of Oct. 29, 2012, while the sponsor — in this case, the city — will pay the “fee simple” and become the property owner. Once the property is purchased, all on-site structures will be demolished and removed, restoring the area to its natural condition.

To apply for the program, contact city grants writer Eileen M. Krugel at 203-937-3620, ext. 3010, or Applications must be postmarked or received by Nov. 26 at City Hall, 355 Main St., West Haven, CT 06516.

Those with questions can contact program coordinator Kristin Walker at 860-871-4033 or They can also contact State Conservation Engineer Arthur Ramthun at 860-871-4030 or

Breast cancer

Committee gives $25K to YNH for breast cancer programs

WEST HAVEN, Oct. 26, 2018 — From left, Eileen Hansen, administrative manager of women’s oncology services at the Smilow Breast Center at Yale New Haven Hospital; Linda Penn, manager of integrative medicine and the Cingari Family Boutique at the Smilow Cancer Hospital; Alison Marcinek, senior development officer at YNHH; and Camille Servodidio, program manager of women’s oncology services at the Smilow Cancer Hospital, receive a $25,000 check from West Haven Breast Cancer Awareness Committee members Anthony Cordone and Beth A. Sabo and Mayor Nancy R. Rossi on Oct. 24 at City Hall.

The money, raised at the committee’s 18th annual Icy Plunge for the Cure in January, will maintain funding for patient information binders, which are given to each person diagnosed with breast cancer at Smilow, and for a hospitality cart, which provides snacks and other amenities for patients at the Smilow Breast Center.

The donation will also finance a new laptop for the YNHH Mobile Mammography Van and support funding for mastectomy specialty bras for uninsured patients through Looking Forward, an education and wellness program for cancer patients at Smilow.

Since the first plunge in 2001, the committee has collected hundreds of thousands of dollars for breast cancer research and education.

The 2019 plunge, tapped for 9 a.m. Jan. 5 at Savin Rock Beach, will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the West Haven Breast Cancer Awareness Program.

(City Photo/Michael P. Walsh)

Driver safety course offered in West Haven

Driver safety course offered Nov. 14

WEST HAVEN, Oct. 2, 2018 — The West Haven Senior Center will offer an AARP Driver Safety Program from noon-4 p.m. Nov. 14 at the Johnson Community Center, 201 Noble St.

The program is designed to help sharpen driving skills, develop strategies to adjust to age-related vision changes, develop hearing and reaction times, and learn about the effects of medication on driving performance.

Participants must complete the class to receive a certification for insurance purposes.

The fee is $15 for AARP members and $20 for nonmembers, payable to AARP.

To register, call the senior center at 203-937-3507.

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