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Harrison Mayor Pushes Business Revitalization

HARRISON, N.Y. – Harrison Mayor Ron Belmont gave an update on the town’s efforts to help with business revitalization, not only downtown but on Westchester Avenue as well.

Speaking at a League of Women Voters’ luncheon Wednesday, Belmont said the town is in the process of revitalizing its Chamber of Commerce to help draw more visitors to the town’s shopping districts. Belmont said that effort starts with volunteers taking the initiative to make the area look nice.

“People appreciate having a clean town,” Belmont said. “We are trying to take better care of our streets and parks. If the grass gets too long, call my office. We are cutting the grass every other week now as opposed to every week, so on a week off from cutting grass we are going to have our DPW tend to flower beds and other aesthetics in our parks.”

Still, business in Harrison is hurting, with several open storefronts not only downtown but on the “Platinum Mile” on Westchester Avenue. The town revitalization committee is being encouraged to reach out not only to businesses along Halstead Avenue and its arteries but to corporate buildings, some of which are boarded up with “weeds going through the pavement,” the mayor said.

“We’ve got some work to do,” Belmont said. “It’s not anyone’s fault. It’s a product of the times. Money is not where it was. We are trying to put together a summit with the people who are working on our master plan to get some new ideas and some vitality. Let’s think outside of the box. Maybe it will work.”

Belmont acknowledged that downtown parking for commercial vehicles is a problem. He said there are about 36 parking spots earmarked for nighttime commercial parking across from the Harrison Florist at the intersection of Halstead and Harrison avenues. During the day, Belmont said, there are about 12 to 20 spaces available for commercial vehicles.

“It’s a well-kept secret in town,” Belmont said. “We are going to put in a bigger sign that says two-hour parking for the commercial district in the near future.”

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