I would like to start off by thanking a partial list of the many members of the team who have brought us to this point today: Supervisor Greenstein, Councilwomen Katz, Councilman Saland, Councilwomen Makowska as well as former Town Board members, Councilman Chapin and Councilwomen Mottel, Town Administrator Jill Simon Shapiro, Director of Planning Sabrina Charney Hull, Environmental Coordinator Stephen Coleman, Deputy Town Engineer Robert Cioli, Board of Architectural Review Chairman Robert Schenkel, Co-Chairs of the Beautification Advisory Board Phyllis Furnari and Monica De Janosi as well as all the Members of the Streetscape Committee Dana Berk, Beth Hundgen, Jeffrey Kohn and Lauren Levin as well as the entire team at WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff, Boswell Engineering and ELQ Industries. I apologize in advance for anyone I missed but your contribution has not gone unnoticed as this was truly a group effort by so many members of the Community.
I think it is appropriate to quote one of New Castle’s most famous residents: Horace Greeley
“I think we all, as we grow old, love to feel and know that some spot of earth is peculiarly our own — ours to possess and to enjoy — ours to improve and to transmit to our children.”
These remarks will be after careful consideration by the New Castle Historical Society engraved on a brass plaque to be forever affixed into the sidewalk in front the Horace Greeley House. They truly encapsulate why the beauty of our hamlet is so important. It is an extension of our homes and a place we possess, enjoy and will pass on to our children.
This is an important moment for the Hamlet of Chappaqua. Today we are not only here to thank all the wonderful people who have brought us to this point, but to mark a new beginning. The infrastructure, safety measures and public areas we will create will be the foundation upon which this community will grow over the coming decades. We are replacing our historic foundations, that in some cases are over 80 years old, with a new and reimagined Hamlet. This hard work will be basis to allow our businesses to grow and more people to call the Downtown home over the distant future. Our Hamlet has gone to long without the attention it deserves. Having a beautiful and functioning Town will entice new businesses to our Downtown and help those already here to prosper. By making this investment we are sending a strong message that not only is our Hamlet the heart of our community, but it is a manifestation of the pride we all share in our homes.
I still recall sitting with the Supervisor and the Police Chief almost three years ago and expressing our concern about the lack of a traffic light and pedestrian safety in the Downtown, particularly on Friday afternoons when our school children are running around. The installation of a traffic light and traditional crosswalks will help to keep our youngest residents safe and is one of the many improvements I am proud of.
There will be some challenges along the way as we construct our new sidewalks, public spaces, infrastructure, roadways, streetlamps and plantings but in the end this inconvenience and our tremendous investment in our Hamlet will ensure that one of the hearts of New Castle not only serves todays residents but acts as a gathering spot for all future residents of our community to be proud of and call home.