City Breaks Ground on Waterfront Project with Market Basket

Public-Private Partnership Touted at Supermarket Site
By Charis Anderson

NEW BEDFORD — Gov. Deval Patrick gathered Friday with state and local officials on the former Fairhaven Mills site to celebrate the ground breaking of the Market Basket supermarket, the anchor store for the new retail and mixed-use development there.
Construction is already under way on the supermarket, located on the northwest corner of the site — now known as Riverside Landing — and the 95,000-square foot store is expected to open in October, said Arthur T. Demoulas, president and chief executive office of the Tewksbury supermarket chain.
“When I was growing up on the South Side of Chicago, we had to go all the way to the other side of town for groceries,” said Patrick.
Patrick said he never understood that: Didn’t people realize that residents in his neighborhood needed to buy food, as well? he asked.
As spaces across the state are developed, “we have to pay attention to all of the elements that make that neighborhood a neighborhood,” he said.
The Riverside Landing project highlights the importance of public-private partnerships, several officials said.
“It certainly goes to show what a little cooperation from the state government, the local government and the private industry can produce for the community,” said Demoulas.
The supermarket is just the first phase in the site’s planned development.
Market Basket will also be building a mixed-use building on the east side of the site, closer to the river, while Mark White and Mark Dickinson, the project’s original developers, retained ownership of a portion of the site along Coggeshall Street.
On Friday, Dickinson said he had received a number of inquiries on the southern portion of the site but had not taken any action yet.
At an August 2009 press conference about the project, Dickinson said a bank and a restaurant were two of the possible development options being considered for that part of the site.
The Riverside Landing development is one piece of a planned revitalization of the city’s Upper Harbor district, said Mayor Scott W. Lang, who pointed to other projects such as the planned renovation of the former Whitman Mill No. 2 into the Victoria Riverside Townhouse Lofts.
“We are really going to change this for the 21st century, block by block, piece by piece,” said Lang.
January 09, 2010
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