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Harrison Master Plan Consultants Target Parking

HARRISON, N.Y. – Harrison residents could see cleaned up municipal parking lots with improved signage if the Town Board goes along with suggestions from its consultants, BFJ Planning, on a new town Master Plan.

Frank Fish, a principal of BFJ Planning, and Susan Favate, a BFJ planning associate, met with residents and the downtown revitalization committee in June to discuss the new plan, which was drafted in 2007 but never adopted. Harrison residents concentrated on three areas: parking, infrastructure and aesthetics.

“There’s just enough supply [of off-street parking] to meet demand,” Favate told the Town Board Thursday night. She suggested cleaning up all municipal lots and improving the signage for parking. In the meantime, board members were urged to secure additional off-street parking and look at the traffic flow – perhaps some traffic lights are not timed correctly, Favate said.

In addition, Macy Road down to St. Gregory’s Church should be repaved, the two planners said. The paving would need to take place before streetscaping, and money for the project could be found through grants.

When it came to aesthetics, the BFJ members suggested surrounding the Harrison Public Library on all four sides with roads instead of just the current three sides – saying it would give the area around the library a New England look. They said the library’s future renovations would have to be taken into consideration when talking about any such changes.

The BFJ reps also talked about the Platinum Mile in downtown Harrison and discussed the main concerns of residents in that area, which were more schoolchildren and increased traffic. Fish suggested an assisted living center because, he said, there would be no children and traffic would decrease.

Councilmen Fred Sciliano said a young professionals meeting Tuesday at PepsiCo World Headquarters was eye-opening for him and that people in this group would be perfect to have living in the downtown area. After working in the area a few years, they would probably build or buy a house in Harrison or White Plains, he said.

The board voted in March to pay BFJ Planning $48,000 for the update to the Master Plan. The next step is a yet-to-be-scheduled public hearing, after which the board could change the draft based on feedback. The plan would be approved sometime in November.

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