Twining Properties gets go-ahead for Echo Bay project planning

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By Bill Heltzel

The New Rochelle City Council approved a new agreement with Twining Properties LLC on Feb. 7 to develop 12.5 acres of city property at Echo Bay.

Twining, based in New York City, has proposed a $300 million mixed-use project, called Pratt Landing, in an industrial area at the edge of downtown.

The general concept is to convert industrial property to a village-like setting that opens up views of the Long Island Sound and connects the waterfront to downtown.

Twining will have to decontaminate City Yard, a public works facility built in 1916 that has devolved into an eyesore of garages, repair shops, salt piles and recycling areas. Public works will be relocated next year to 70 Nardozzi Place, near Interstate 95.

Twining presented plans to the city council in October that call for creating 450 housing units, 80,000 square feet of retail space, 25,000 square feet of offices, hotel with 100 to 200 rooms and a parking garage on four city blocks near Main, Huguenot and Pratt streets. The developer must also restore and find new use for the decaying New Rochelle Armory that was built in 1931.

Forest City Residential got exclusive rights to develop the site in 2007, but the city council scuttled the project in 2013 after the developer scaled back plans. Twining won exclusive development rights in 2014 and that agreement was expiring.

Under the new agreement, Twining is expected to take 12 to 18 months to prepare an environmental impact statement. If the council likes what it sees, the city and developer can sign a land disposition agreement.