Updated: Engine Plant tax district passes House and Senate

Updated May 12: Legislation that will create a special tax distract to enhance the proposed redevelopment of the Stratford Army Engine Plant has been passed by both the State House of Representatives and the State Senate. The bill is expected to be signed by Governor Dannel Malloy and would become effective July 1.

NEW SECTION: “We are very pleased that the Legislature has authorized the formation of an infrastructure improvement district at the Stratford Army Engine Plant property,” said Donald Gershman, principal of Point Stratford Renewal, the group that has a purchase agreement to acquire the Engine Plant property from the U.S. Army.

“This action significantly advances the redevelopment of the site by providing a potential funding mechanism for the roads, utilities and other infrastructure improvements needed to make the project a reality,” Gershman said. “This funding would come from the issuance by the district of tax exempt bonds that are repaid utilizing a portion of the incremental real estate taxes generated by the redeveloped property.”

ORIGINAL STORY: Mayor John Harkins thanked the entire Stratford state legislative delegation for their efforts in getting this key piece of legislation through the General Assembly, which will now become a springboard to one of the largest economic development initiatives in the history of Stratford.

“The creation of this new tax district is another milestone on the way to this critical and exciting redevelopment project in Stratford,” said Mayor Harkins.

“I’d like to personally thank state Rep. Laura Hoydick, state Rep. Larry Miller, state Rep. Terry Backer, state Sen. Kevin Kelly and state Sen. Andres Ayala for all of their efforts and support in shepherding this initiative through the legislative process.”

Under the new legislation, the district would essentially be allowed to levy taxes and issue bonds in an effort to help finance a successful redevelopment project, specifically items such as road construction, sewage systems, environmental remediation and other infrastructure necessary improvements.

Developer Point Stratford Renewal (PSR) agreed to terms with the Army on a purchase and sale agreement for the vacant 77-acre Stratford Army Engine Plant property last October. The developers will be pursuing a mixed-use redevelopment of the site, bringing with it jobs and significant economic activity. All development on the site will be subject to the town’s land use processes.

PSR is a collaboration of three Connecticut companies: Loureiro Properties LLC, Development Resources LLC and Sedgwick Partners LLC, each of which brings extensive experience and expertise in the redevelopment, remediation and financing of innovative and adaptive reuse projects.

Stratford Army Engine Plant. Courtesy Point Stratford Renewal.

Stratford Army Engine Plant. Courtesy Point Stratford Renewal.

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