A ceremonial groundbreaking was held today at Larkin Plaza, a $190 million mixed-use development project in downtown Yonkers.
Situated on the south side of the city’s 4-year-old Van der Donck Park and Saw Mill River walkway, Larkin Plaza is a joint venture of Yonkers-based Rising Development and RXR Realty LLC, the Long Island-based real estate company and longtime commercial office landlord in Westchester.
Demolition work on the site began this summer and vertical construction is set to begin immediately. The plaza, which is a public-private partnership between the development companies and the city, is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2018.
“What’s great about Larkin Plaza is that it’s precisely the type of development we need in Yonkers to meet the growing demand of people who want to live here,” Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano said.
Once completed, Larkin Plaza will include a 25-story building with 280 residential units and a 17-story, 159-unit building. A separate two-story building along Van der Donck Park will hold most of the complex’s 35,000 square feet of restaurant and retail space. The development will also include a three-story parking garage with the capacity to hold 539 vehicles.
Scott Rechler, chairman and CEO of RXR Realty, said the development will provide a top-quality alternative to the high-priced housing in New York City, while creating jobs, services and tax revenue for residents of Yonkers.
“This really is a remarkable place,” Rechler said of Yonkers. “It has all the ingredients that you want to see to really make it a 21st century city.”
During the ceremony, city and development officials also paid tribute to Rising Development founder Nick Sprayregen, who died in July. Sprayregen was a major downtown landlord who paid roughly $30 million to acquire an assemblage of commercial and residential properties that encompass more than 3 acres in the heart of the city’s downtown redevelopment area.
“The vision that Nick had to amass these properties and to bring this all together is something that we’re very grateful for,” Spano said.
In memory of the late developer, a rooftop terrace shared by the development’s two towers will be named after Sprayregen.
“I’m sure he’s thrilled that Yonkers, the community he recognized (had) so much promise, is taking this important step forward,” Rechler said.
Rising Development, now helmed by CEO Tim Rutledge, continues to move forward with Sprayregen’s vision for the city. One block from Larkin Plaza, the development company demolished a building at 36 Main St. in October, one that served as the canvas for one section of a three-part, 14,000-square-foot mural painted by Yonkers resident Richard Haas.
On Mill Street, a one-block, dead-end lane behind Main Street and Warburton Avenue has been redeveloped into a public area and walkway named Mill Street Courtyard. Sprayregen several years ago acquired five properties surrounding the Mill Street cul-de-sac and announced plans for a $22 million mixed-use rehabilitation project that is now underway. Its centerpiece is 2 Mill St., a former warehouse being converted into 40 live-work lofts for artists and entrepreneurs and retail space.
City officials said the Larkin Plaza project stands as one of the largest private developments in downtown Yonkers in decades and will complement the substantial public and private investment the city’s downtown has seen in recent years.