MAMARONECK, N.Y. – As county groups meet to discuss ways to keep Westchester's young adults from moving away, Mayor Norman Rosenblum is confident that Mamaroneck Village will continue to be a diverse community, combining young adults, older families and senior citizens.
“It has to do with our success as a village, whether it’s young adults, senior citizens, adults, or any other group of people,” said Rosenblum.
Last week, several groups met at the PepsiCo World Headquarters in Purchase to exchange ideas on how to change Westchester County into a place where young professionals would want to work and live. The Westchester County Association's Young Professionals Group, The BLUEPRINT for Westchester initiative, and Project for Public Spaces each led a discussion on how to move forward with projects which will build community spaces more attractive to a young work force.
“When you have a vibrant work force, it opens up a world of opportunities for all types of businesses,” said Laurence Gottlieb, director of the Office of Economic Development for Westchester County. “What you really want, ultimately, is a center of innovation. You want to cluster smart people together so there’s enthusiasm, there’s innovation, and it spurs further innovation. If you don’t have a core group of intelligent people, whether they’re young professionals, or folks with more work experience, you really don’t have a vibrant economy.”
One of Rosenblum’s missions in Mamaroneck is to continue to push for growth in the community, while maintaining its charm.
“You have to get some revenue without changing the character,” he said.
Currently, the village is looking to add more parking for shoppers, and possibly additional retail space behind the CVS Pharmacy on Mamaroneck Avenue. Rosenblum also mentioned bringing in an engineer and planner to help form a long-term plan for the village. Rosenblum, a third-generation Mamaroneck resident, said his father built one of the first apartment complexes in the village.
“Growth is positive, not negative; it’s about how you grow,” he said. “You move here because you like it, not because you want to change it.”
By adding more retail locations and restaurants, more entry-level, local jobs can open up for younger people in the community. Rosenblum added that the new addition of a Smashburger restaurant on Mamaroneck Avenue is one small example of his growth plan.
“People want to come here,” he said. “But you have to give them a reason to stay here.”