Multimillion-dollar plans are in store for Blue Mountain Plaza, a 66,000-square-foot shopping center just north of the Peekskill-Buchanan border.
“We’re bringing an up-to-date shopping center that’s completely refurbished to an area that needs some refurbishing,” Kurtsam Realty Corp. property manager Fred Schwalb said of the complex at 20 Welcher Ave. in Peekskill.
The shopping center’s roughly $10 million improvement project includes expansions and renovations to an existing McDonald’s restaurant and CVS Pharmacy. Both companies plan to invest their own money in the redevelopments.
Kurtsam Realty Corp., the Croton-on-Hudson owner of the property, also plans to revive the exterior of the entire shopping complex, which is just off the Welcher Avenue exit of Route 9.
“When the entire project is complete, we’ll have a state-of-the-art center that provides high-quality, easy-access shopping and services for the entire area,” Schwalb said.
The first phase of the center’s revival wrapped earlier this month, when the 3,200-square-foot McDonald’s opened the doors of its newly-renovated eatery. The nearly $1 million project features digital menu boards and touch-screen kiosks for ordering. The restaurant also plans to launch a smartphone app for mobile ordering.
“This has always been an excellent location for us, and we anticipate an increase in business as a result of the modernization,” said McDonald’s franchise owner Carlos Wong.
On the opposite side of the shopping center, CVS plans to expand its footprint from 3,600 to approximately 14,000 square feet. The larger pharmacy, set to open late next year, will also offer a drive-through lane for prescription pickups.
“In today’s neighborhood shopping center market, a large pharmacy is just as important as a grocer used to be,” Schwalb said. “To accommodate that (expansion) meant playing musical chairs with the other tenants.”
As part of the expansion, CVS will take over a retail space that is now occupied by the Trustco Bank. The bank plans to move into what will be a newly constructed building on the south end of the center.
Longtime tenants Chinatown Kitchen, Forever Yours Flowers and Golden Scissors Hairdresser will be between CVS and the bank, along with a newly added shoemaker Sole Man.
The complex’s anchor tenant, Green Grocer, is also undergoing an interior renovation, and the supermarket’s 34,700-square-foot building will also soon have a new facade. The grocer took over the space from longtime anchor, A&P, which operated at Blue Mountain from 1959 until its closure in 2015.
“Our aim is to bring consumers healthy, affordable and convenient one-stop food shopping,” said Green Grocer store owner Alex Davashi.
Other improvements to the center will include repaving and restriping the parking areas, new outdoor lighting and upgraded landscaping.
The complex’s third building on the west side of the property will also see the expansion of Go No Sen Karate.
Kurtsam officials believe these improvements to the shopping center will enhance the customer experience.
“Parents can drop their kids off at karate, do a quick food shop and pick up a prescription,” Schwalb said. “Others can have a meal, drop off their shoes for repair and have a haircut.”
Kurtsam Realty President Joanne Landau pointed to the revival of Peekskill’s downtown, along with the recently opened gaming and entertainment center at Charles Point Marina as signs of the area’s resurgence.
“It’s finally starting to happen,” she said “We’re excited to be a part of that.”