New Haven is looking to make its Long Wharf stretch of shoreline an even bigger destination spot.
“Our Long Wharf area is probably one of the most underutilized areas on the East Coast,” Mayor Toni Harp (D) said.
The city hired award-winning global architectural firm Perkins-Eastman to come up with a design to improve the Long Wharf district.
The revitalization plan hopes to bring more housing, retail and economic development to the area, Harp said.
This week the team from Perkins-Eastman unveiled its vision to the public.
The rendering divides Long Wharf into five districts that would be connected by a walkable ribbon-like park. They are being called the Gateway District, the Innovation District, the Market District, the Parkway District and the Harbor District.
“You have some anchors here you have Ikea, you have Sargent (ASSA/ABLOY), you have Jordan’s (Furniture), but I mean the more the merrier, it can’t hurt,” said Russell Lowe, owner of Johnny Salami’s sandwich shop.
Lowe’s business of 19 years would be located in the Market District.
“If it all works out, its fine with me,” Lowe said. “I’m sure this is way down the road, but it sounds like a good idea.”
He just wants to know how it will be funded.
“Where’s the money, state’s broke, I mean who’s going to come up with the money.”
Harp told NBC Connecticut she didn't yet have specifics, but it would cost millions.
“I don’t know what the overall price tag is,” she said. “I know it is multiple millions of dollars, but we think the area itself will attract private investment.”
The mayor said the city would also apply for funding from the state in order to make this ambitious vision of Long Wharf a reality.