Sunday, June 19, 2016

HOPES Group Ready to Renovate Armory

A child care facility was the successful bidder for the Plainfield Armory in 2012, but renovation plans were in abeyance until now.

HOPES Community Action Partnership Inc. said in a press release acquisition has been completed.

Here is an excerpt from the press release:

After renovations, the facility will serve as many as 300 children ages birth through five, in 20 state-of-the-art classrooms. The acquisition commences the organization’s efforts to transform the historic building into a contemporary educational center that will become one of the largest early childhood learning centers in the region. HOPES will house early childhood education programs based in Plainfield at the Armory site, including Early Head Start, Head Start, and State-Funded Preschool programs. Since 2009, HOPES has administered early childhood education programs in Plainfield, serving more than 270 infants, toddlers, preschoolers and pregnant women each year.

In 2013, HOPES received Zoning Board approvals. An initial meeting drew a large crowd with concerns about traffic and other impacts on the mostly residential neighborhood. On March 19, 2013, the organization won approvals from the Zoning Board, but a timeline calling for September 2014 occupancy did not happen.

Meanwhile, part of the same large block bounded by Terrill Road, South Avenue, Leland Avenue and East Seventh Street has become the site for a $50 million, 212-unit residential complex with many amenities. Plaintalker deemed approval of a "payment in lieu of taxes" plan for the development the top story of 2015.

It has not been uncommon for time to elapse between initial approvals and actual development to take place here. An 80-unit apartment project for residents over age 55 received initial approvals in 2008, but did not begin construction until last year. A grand opening will take place on June 29..


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