New Activity “Spring”ing Up Across City

By at May 4, 2017 | 2:00 pm | Print


As the weather gets warmer it seems the desire for new businesses and other activities in the City has also heated up.

In the past few weeks several businesses have opened.

Mofongo’s, a unique Puerto Rican/American Restaurant, opened up at 260 Main St. It features Mofongo bowls, burgers, empanadas and much more. It is owned by Richard Placeres Jr.

On April 28 America’s Food Basket held a ribbon cutting at 250 Allen St.

America’s Food Basket is a family owned Cooperative chain of independently owned supermarkets that aim to bring variety, top of the line products and an atmosphere that feels like home.

On May 2, the City held a ribbon cutting for Yo-Yo Ice Cream at 159 Main St. It features rolled ice cream, smoothies, bubble tea and a juice bar.

“This is a difficult space, but I think Yo-Yo fits perfectly here,” said Tim Stewart, director of the Greater New Britain Chamber of Commerce. “There are many eateries opening downtown. Success breeds success. Mofongo’s is also going to prove anyone can do it.”

On the same day, May 2, Hardware City Cafe opened its doors at 2 Main St., the spot which was previously home to Cafe Beauregard. Isaac Silva, owner of West Side Tavern, along with Miriam Geraci, a board of education member and Ellen Spelman Cedarfield opened the store for breakfast and lunch from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. On opening day, customers waited in a line out the door.

“I think it is important to recognize that small and big packages should never be understated. Any growth is positive growth,” said Alderman Daniel Salerno. “It changes the perception of what New Britain is about and that is really key. We have a lot of things happening throughout the City that people in the community are starting to recognize.”

“I think it is great to see all the new eating places are showing up because they will be here when Columbus Commons opens up,” said Alderman Don Naples. “We need to get more people downtown and this is the way to do it. It is chicken and eggs.”

Xenolith Partners LLC plans a 160-unit complex, known as Columbus Commons, with about 21,000 square feet of commercial space, on the site where police headquarters once stood on Columbus Boulevard.

Naples said Grand Pizza at 136 Main St and Mae Kong at 25 Main St. are also adding to the eateries downtown.

But restaurants are not the only things occurring in the City.

The Summer Music Series at Central Park will begin on Wednesdays starting June 7 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Interested vendors can contact Zeena Tawfik for more information at 860-826-3366.

Phase 4 of the Streetscape construction work will ramp up in May. Presently Columbus Blvd and Bank St. have utility and electrical work going on. The sculpture that sits in Milewski park will be refurbished and brought back and in the center of the round about being built.

Beehive Bridge will also begin. The Route 72 Bridge on Main Street will be transformed into a Beehive theme. The bridge will be highlighted with panels ranging from yellow to orange. The polycarbonite translucent panels will leave different shadow designs that will appear as colorful ever changing artwork. On the north corners there will be parklets with trees and benches.

“Surveyors will be out for the next couple of months and then we are hiring contractors,” said Mayor Erin Stewart. “We are hoping they will be hired in the spring and can get started in summer.”

Also, many organization have expressed interest in holding events.

“Our parks and recreation department is working with many organizations looking to utilize central park for arts events, historical events, utilizing historic walking tour signs and more,” said Mayor Stewart. “It is a very busy spring as so many things are happening.”

.News Feature

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