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Superblock Moves Forward

Downtown Nyack. Photo Credit: Nyack Daily Snapshotby Dave Zornow

Nyack, Feb 1 — Nyack’s Superblock downtown redevelopment vision is taking two tiny steps forward. The village will hire an outside consultant to write a Request For Proposal (RFP) authorizing a feasibility study for a Superblock project. More importantly, village officials have identified a source of funding for the study. Riverspace, with the help of South Nyack resident Rosie O’Donnell, will fund the proposed $80,000 Superblock feasibility study.

“I think it’s important that we follow the guidance of the Citizens Committee and keep moving forward with a feasibility study and really figure out what development, if any, makes sense in the center of the village,’€ says Nyack Trustee Jen White. ‘€œIt’s very important that the feasibility study be conducted by someone impartial.  The company we choose to conduct the  study should be excluded from participating in any Superblock development,” she says. White adds that this isn’t Riverspace Downtown ‘€“ but it does include many of the aspects of that vision which incorporated commercial, residential and parking revenues to support a new anchor arts center replacing the current Riverspace theater.

O’Donnell will announce her support  for the project at a meeting in Nyack this Wednesday with an $80,000 donation to Riverspace to underwrite a feasibility study.

Nyack will hire consultant Robert Geneslaw to write an RFP to invite vendors to bid on the Superblock Feasibility Study. ‘€œWe need the report to address three specific parts of the development process,’€ says Doug Foster, a member of Nyack’s Village Board. Foster says the first part is to connect local officials and members of the community with planners experienced in this kind of project. ‘€œThis is where you determine the scale of the project as well as which elements ‘€“ such as residential, commercial and arts components ‘€“ will be included,’€ says Foster.

The second phase of the study looks at finances, where experts run the numbers based on the attributes described in the first step. ‘€œStep three looks at the environmental of the project ‘€“ specifically the impact on traffic patterns.’€ Foster says this is a critical step, because you don’t want to propose a project you later decide is too big to do because of its adverse affects on the environment and the roads.

“Redeveloping the Superblock offers Nyack its best chance to renew itself culturally and economically,” says Riverspace board member Josh Goldberg. “It’s wonderful that the new Village Board is ready to lead the process to revitalize downtown and expand our tax base without burdening home owners to secure a lasting place for the arts in Nyack.”

An RFP for the Superblock Feasibility Study should be ready by the next Village Board meeting on 2/11.  The process of accepting and reviewing proposals and selecting a vendor is expected to take about two months.

Photo Credit: Nyack Daily Snapshot

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