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Peekskill Business: What’s In, Out, and On the Way

While eight Peekskill businesses closed in 2010, 14 new ones opened. Here is a look at what to expect in 2011.

From block to block Peekskill tells a different story of development. On South Division St., artistic signs advertising the F Sharp indicate an upswing in the economy, but on South St. vacant storefronts give the look of economic decline. So what is actually going on in Peekskill? Peekskill’s Economic Development Specialist Christ Marra explained what businesses went through in 2010 and what new businesses we can expect as we enter the spring of 2011.

“In 2010 no restaurants closed, it was a pretty stabilizing year,” said Marra. “People were holding on to their businesses any way they could but they stayed open.”

No restaurants closed in 2010, but eight businesses did close, while 14 new places opened (see the list below). This year, we have already seen open and close. While other small businesses about the competition Walgreens offers, several more new businesses are preparing to open this spring. A few city projects are also planned to take off in the next few weeks and months. 

The city is also in the process of forming its Cultural Heritage Tourism Strategic Plan and Downtown Retail Recruitment Plan, both aimed to help the city’s economic development. The Cultural Heritage plan will focus on cultivating and promoting the city’s rich history and cultural traditions. It is expected to be complete by mid-year.

The city will hire a downtown marketing consultant to assess the area as part of the Downtown Recruitment Plan. The consultant will look at the size and shapes of spaces, and other important aspects of the buildings and area, and assess them for what businesses would fit best. “The consultant has resources that he city does not have,” said Marra. “They have access to data the city would have to pay for and experience of interviewing landlords and retail specific.”

Once the report is completed Marra will take the suggestions and guidelines, and enact the plan by recruiting the appropriate businesses, enticing them into town and doing what the city can to help get new them up and running.

What is coming in 2011:
-The Quiet Man’s Pub: An Irish pub will move into 15 North Division St., most likely this summer. The owners plan to refurbish the front of the building to resemble a traditional pub (see photo attached to this article). The building will also have four artist lofts available for rent on the second and third floors, probably not until September 1.

-F Sharp Restaurant and Music Hall: John Ford, who owns the Ford building and Ford Piano, is gearing up to open F Sharp Restaurant and Music Hall in his building on South Division St.  Marra said he expects the music hall to open by time of Peekskill’s jazz fest is held, which is usually the last weekend in July, and that the opening of the restaurant would follow. 

-901 Main St.: A bakery/sandwich shop is planned to move into 901 Main St., the storefront beneath the senior citizen building Peekskill Plaza apartments within the next few months.

-Main Street Commons: This 21,750 square foot commercial center at 1719 Main St. has its building permit and has paid all escrow funds, which means construction should begin very soon now that the weather is improving. The space has Auto Zone signed on as a tenant that will occupy one third of the large space. The developer has hired a real estate broker to find other tenants for the building. Marra said the broker informed him there are several interested tenants.

Metro-North Train Station Renovation: The MTA has plans to renovate the Peekskill Metro-North train station and the MTA has already accepted a bid from company to do the work. But Croton-on-Hudson station was also on MTA’s list of stations to be renovated, so the timing of the projects depends on which station the MTA chooses to renovate first. The City is still waiting to hear this decision. Patch’s calls and emails to the MTA were not returned.

-Central Firehouse: The city does not actually own the land that the firehouse is supposed to be built upon, which is part of the Crossroads Plaza, the furniture store, the liquor store, and the white house on the corner of Main and North Broad streets. “We are having ongoing discussions (with the property owners),” said City Manager Rick Finn. “Everything right now is very positive.”

Peekskill Mayor Mary Foster and Finn have both said that the city does not want to go through eminent domain to obtain the properties. Finn said that the city hopes to take ownership of the properties in June or July and, "if everything works out, construction could start as early as August."

-Lincoln Depot: Renovation of the exterior of the Lincoln Depot museum has been completed, and the Lincoln Depot Foundation held a for the interior construction to begin in February. They expect the museum to open in about a year.

-New Artist Lofts: Ten new artist lofts will be completed within the next year, said Marra. Three will be located above Baxter’s pharmacy at 950 Main St. and should be ready by the end of March. As mentioned above, four lofts will be located above the Quiet Man’s Pub, and are expected to be ready for tenants around September. Three more will be located at 113 North Division St., and probably will not be ready for tenants until early 2012.

-Holiday Inn Express: The owner and developer of the land where Holiday Inn Express is set to be built-on the corner of John Walsh Blvd. and Louisa St., is still seeking financing for the actual construction of the building. The foundation and site work is done, but in order to move forward the owner will need funding. Marra said the owner is closer to receiving the necessary funding this year than he was in 2010. “Perhaps an indication on how things are going in the finance world,” said Marra. Check Patch for more on this story.

-Inn on the Hudson: Renovations and façade improvements to the Inn on the Hudson are complete. Renovation of the interior is still underway.

-987 Main St.: Renovations to this building are currently underway, but there no identified tenants to move in yet. The renovation should be complete by May.

-White Plains Linen: White Plains Linen is moving from its current Highland Ave. location to 6 John Walsh Blvd., next to its other facility at 10 John Walsh Blvd. The company expects the move to increase efficiency and expects it will also create about 25 new jobs.

-Replacement for Kelly’s: Remember Kelly’s, the restaurant inside the train station that has sat vacant since the spring of 2009? The building might see some action again soon. The city has been asking the MTA for years to lease the building out to a new tenant, and finally, in the last two months, the MTA has hired real estate broker to find a tenant for the 7,935 square foot building with Hudson River views.

Here is a look at places that closed in 2010 (list compiled by the Office of Economic Development):

1.    Ana’s Hair Salon - 901 Main Street #700
2.    Royal J. Diner – 1 Bank Street
3.    99 cents Power Up – 10 Bank Street
4.    Peekskill Travel Bureau  – 1011 Park Street
5.    Oasis Video 901 Main Street #500
6.    Hyta Beauty Salon – 3 Bank Street
7.    Bill’s Bicycle Barn 510 Highland Avenue, Peekskill
8.    Beach Aquarium, Beach Shopping Center

Business that Opened in 2010 (list compiled by the Office of Economic Development)


2.    G&H Jamaican Restaurant, 11 N. Division Street
3.   , 1008 Main Street
4.   Meteor Computer, Inc., 1014 Park Street
5.   The Beverage Works, 1 Highland Industrial Park
6.   The Cove, 5 John Walsh Boulevard (Formerly Chrystal Bay)
7.   RMS Packaging, Inc., 1050 Lower South Street
8.   Toys R Us, Beach Shopping Center
9.   Rainbow, Beach Shopping Center
10. Hyta Beauty Salon, 1007 Park Street (New owner purchased name from
       #6 above)
11. 1 N. Division Street
12. 970 Main Street
13. Ciro’s On South, 907 South Street (Rebranded from previous restaurant)
14.at 1000 N. Division Street

Find out what kind of development is going on in Cortlandt .

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Leslie Lawler March 04, 2011 at 07:33 PM
According to the City of Peekskill Office of Economic Development, the OED (lol) does the following: "Business Information OED provides comprehensive market and demographic data that can help businesses make informed decisions. This includes data on population, labor and employment trends, commercial real estate, corporate activity, housing, taxes, infrastructure, and education. Business Assistance Provide an objective, confidential, and free service of identifying possible real estate locations in the city for new or expanding commercial businesses. This makes site selection more efficient and tailored to the requirements of a specific business." source - City of Peekskill Website/OED So why does the $103k OED "Specialist" need a consultant to duplicate the services he's already being paid to do? And am I reading this right? The consultant will "study the size and shape of spaces." Another much-needed diddy....Consultant's Space Study in Peekskill - Part II. It's astonishing that while the rest of the country, state, county and neighboring locales are dealing with major economic issues, the City of Peekskill seems to be rolling in dough. How about delving into that, Patch? Inquiring minds would love to know the secret. Maybe the consultants will need consultants.
leesther brown March 04, 2011 at 08:25 PM
Is this the Mayor's State Of The City Address?! She hasn't presented one,I'm just asking!
Liz Giegerich March 04, 2011 at 08:49 PM
Thanks for the message Leslie. When Economic Development Specialist Chris Marra was asked why the city needed to hire a consultant to perform a similar job to his he explained what I've included in the article. Here is a little more: He said that economic development office primarily serves as a resource for businesses, while the consultant would serve as a resource for the city and its economic development. The consultant would be assessing the city's buildings, existing businesses and those in surrounding areas and providing the city a report/plan on which to act upon. Marra said that the consultant has resources the city does not have, such as access to needed data that the city would have to pay for, and experience interviewing landlords about their space for the purposes of the marketing strategy. He said that the marketing consultant would have expertise that he himself does not possess.
Leslie Lawler March 04, 2011 at 09:02 PM
Thanks for the follow-up information, Liz. Marra's explanation contradicts what the website states his office already does: "...provides comprehensive market and demographic data...." So either the website's description is bogus and misleading, or this is just another flimsy excuse to waste taxpayer dollars. Further, it is noteworthy that when the Economic Development Specialist was hired at the beginning of this administration, the position was sold to the public almost verbatim of what Marra now says he can't do. HE/HIS OFFICE is supposed to be doing EXACTLY what this consultant will do. At least that's what the Mayor told the taxpayers when his position was created four years ago. I credit him at least for his candor. He doesn't have marketing expertise? Step out of the kitchen then. Peekskill can't afford incompentency and duplicity of effort and work. I do thank The Patch for asking the hard questions and digging for answers on behalf of the taxpayers.
Patty Villanova March 05, 2011 at 01:48 AM
Leslie's comments say it all, she's right again. The truth is that by its nature, government is designed ever increase in size and scope and Peekskill is no exception. With all of the taxpayer money that's been spent in the last 6 years that I've been here, this city should look like Manhattan North by now. Instead, it's one step forward and two steps back and despite the propaganda, things seem to be getting worse. I cringe everytime I see another storefront go vacant, knowing what's coming next-- another low end "variety" store whose real business is not selling the ubiquitous teddy bears but transferring the day laborers' hard earned money back to South America and parts unknown. Maybe the consultants and economic experts can explain how this downward spiral can be changed. Does anyone really believe that upscale stores like my Side Effects or the Coop or Treat Station will be coming to Peekskill any time soon given the current foot traffic? Despite claims that they want to help us, it seems the only people who are making out are those with guaranteed government jobs and those who are on the receiving end of the grants or other largesse. There are people in town-- smart, hardworking professionals and business owners-- who have answers to some of Peekskill's problems regarding image building, marketing and promotion. Nobody at City Hall is listening, nor are they interested in real solutions. They have a vested interest in the status quo. Pity that.
Bill March 05, 2011 at 04:03 AM
Is the Target that was going to be built down by the water dead? Glad to see Walgreens is open, it's the first in the area. I wonder how long Rite Aid across the street will survive?
Patty Villanova March 05, 2011 at 12:22 PM
Neither Target or Walgreen's will do anything to save our wonderful downtown. I have no idea whether or not Target was ever going to come to Peekskill or if that was just another urban myth. You couldn't have picked a worse location for Walgreen's and one wonders why city officials encouraged/allowed them to build at that site, if for nothing more than the harm it does to Rite Aid. Crossroads Plaza (or Crackhead Plaza as it's affectionately known) is the only strip mall within the BID and it would make sense to upgrade and renovate it to encourage new businesses. Instead, they are building a multi-million dollar firehouse that is totally unnecessary and which will effectively destroy the plaza. You don't have to be a highly paid consultant to figure out what's going on. It's not about success. It never is in Peekskill or Put Valley for that matter. It's about keeping the emergency services voting block happy for the next election. Also, most people are afraid to speak out publicly against the fire department- for obvious reasons.
Frank Cimino March 05, 2011 at 02:00 PM
I congratulate the OED for moving forward and initiating a study that examines how to forfill the need for the downtown area, how to expand commerce, and hopefully to include and identify much needed retail shops and space for arts and entertainment. I look forward to following up on their conclusions and recomendations.
Liz Giegerich March 08, 2011 at 07:02 PM
For those who don't speak Spanish, here is a translation of Juan's comments: "Don't worry, my people are taking the capital, soon we are going to have control and all you locals that have been in control during all this time are going to have to learn to speak Spanish! Viva Ecuador!" Juan, what can you tell us about the Ecuadorian community's development and political plans?
Frank Cimino March 08, 2011 at 07:27 PM
Thanks for the translation Liz. Hopefully Juans statement is tongue in cheek or just joking. If he is serious, thanks for the warning Juan. I would suggest to him if he wants to achieve in America - learn english.
Eileen Burns March 08, 2011 at 10:03 PM
Frank, the English language is written with an upper case "E". There is a program at the local library where you might be able to volunteer to help others learn our complex language! Just a suggestion....
Frank Cimino March 08, 2011 at 10:29 PM
Gracias Eileen. Yo no soy el mejor candidato para una clase inglesa de capacidad de leer y escribir, tengo suficiente sentido para resolver cómo hacer un poste público en un idioma extranjero.
Eileen Burns March 09, 2011 at 01:49 AM
Perhaps Patch could write an article about the many thriving South and Central American based businesses in our community!
Patty Villanova March 09, 2011 at 02:41 AM
I am not sure what you meant by this comment. Perhaps you are referring to most of the Latino businesses in Peekskill that for all intents and purposes are "based" in Central and South America. Most of these storefront merchants are not integrated into the general business community; their customers seem to be other Latinos and Hispanics who are not there to buy teddy bears or other dollar store items, but who are transferring cash electronically back to Central and South America. So I guess you could say there are businesses that are based in these other countries that are "thriving" even though they are not really a part of the central business district. Sadly, these South American based businesses are not attracting outside shoppers or visitors to the city of Peekskill, and they are only there to serve a very limited audience. This is an issue that should be dealt with by the highly paid consultants as they try to figure out how to make our downtown more attractive to tourists and new businesses that will actually bring people to our city who will in turn patronize legitimate businesses and spend money. It's known as "commerce."
leesther brown March 13, 2011 at 03:05 AM
OH! Let's add Mylen Stairs on Washington St to the OUT list!!!
leesther brown March 16, 2011 at 05:00 PM
Went up to Peekskill Furniture and Electronics on Main St (next to white house they want to tear down) that's gone too! That was quick...
Leslie Lawler March 16, 2011 at 05:12 PM
What happened to Nardone Furniture on Washington Street? The showroom looks like a ghost-town. There is one tiny corner of furniture left as compared to it formerly occupying that entire building.
Liz Giegerich March 16, 2011 at 05:15 PM
Leesther, The Furniture and Electronics on Main St. moved to Bank Street. Thanks for keeping up on this. Leslie, I'll have to look into Nardone Furniture. Thanks, Liz
leesther brown March 17, 2011 at 12:15 AM
Thank You Liz. I heard the owner of the building signed an agreement with the city and he has not heard from them they bought that building as well.
Christopher Marra March 20, 2011 at 04:29 PM
Hi Liz, Nardone Furniture is staying, but in a smaller capacity and they are leasing the balance of their building to Dollar General. Dollar General plans on opening in early April. The Furniture and Electronic Store did move to Bank Street because the building they were located in is slated to be purchased as part of the Central Fire Station project. Mylen Stairs is downsizing, but another company is moving into thier space and will occupy the majority of the building.
Patty Villanova December 26, 2011 at 07:15 PM
As we approach the end of 2011, it seems most of these comments are still valid. Of course John Ford's alleged opening of F-Sharp music venue never occurred; then again, why should it when there's no incentive attached to all the grant money he got. Same thing with the almost defunct Paramount which I've been watching from across the street these past 7 years. Government has no business in the entertainment industry or trying to run a theater. The Paramount is the key anchor store for our Downtown, yet once again, it's dark during the HOliday prime time, when people are looking for someplace to go. Heck, they could even show MOVIES and all the kids would no doubt be down here. (that is movies that people actually like, as opposed to the elitist fare they insist on playing). The blame can go to the Dems and Repubs alike; apparently Peekskill GOP honcho Vinny Vesce has a lot to say about what goes on there. How can he or anyone else justify the absolutely AWFUL decisions that are being made at Peekskill's main attraction??
Jill Gertz December 26, 2011 at 08:20 PM
Back in the 90's I was telling Ralph DiBart and Paramount that they should use the theater as an anchor to draw more film artists intead of part time the glorified scribblers and finger painters they were getting. I said the Paramount should act more like a film museum with educational programs that extend from it. That didn't happen in Peekskill, but it did in Pleasantville when the Jacob Burns Film Center was established 10 years ago. So many school groups were going there (school groups keep a lot of non-profits in the black) that reservations had to be made months in advance. The Paramount had a better film program in the 90's and they could have done a great job. Instead we got a glorified arts and crafts level art scene with a self-serving "look at me!" radical streak (the One Station Plaza cadre). The Paramount films in 90's were drawing top professionals. Peekskill's plastic arts scene generally attracts amateurs and wannabes sorry to say. Pleasantville did what Peekskill could have done better. The Burns Center has brought 1 million people to Pleasantville in 10 years.. "How a Cinema’s Fresh Start Revived a Town, Too" http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/04/nyregion/jacob-burns-film-center-toasts-a-decade.html
Patty Villanova December 27, 2011 at 03:58 AM
Excellent article Jill, that says it all. How anyone with half a brain can't see that there's no reason our own Paramount could not be equal to or better than those venues is beyond me. Oh wait, I forgot, this is Peekskill, where it never is about success, merely about lining the pockets of a certain few, year after year. What a shame.
Gary Reith January 02, 2013 at 08:32 PM
Mylen Stairs showroom is and has always been open for business!!!

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