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Westport Receives Modified Plans For Bedford Square Project

A rendering of the proposed Bedford Square project shows three of the four new buildings that would be built on the Gunn property on Church Lane.
A rendering of the proposed Bedford Square project shows three of the four new buildings that would be built on the Gunn property on Church Lane. Photo Credit: Contributed
The proposed Bedford Square projects seeks to transform the current Westport Weston Family Y facility into a mixed-use development featuring retail shops, restaurants and apartments. View is from the Post Road looking down Church Lane.
The proposed Bedford Square projects seeks to transform the current Westport Weston Family Y facility into a mixed-use development featuring retail shops, restaurants and apartments. View is from the Post Road looking down Church Lane. Photo Credit: Contributed
This is a view of what the proposed Bedford Square development project would look like from Elm Street.
This is a view of what the proposed Bedford Square development project would look like from Elm Street. Photo Credit: Contributed
Plans to redevelop the current Westport Weston Family Y facility into a mixed-use complex have been filed with the Westport Planning and Zoning Department. View is from Church Lane, looking west.
Plans to redevelop the current Westport Weston Family Y facility into a mixed-use complex have been filed with the Westport Planning and Zoning Department. View is from Church Lane, looking west. Photo Credit: Contributed

WESTPORT, Conn. — The proposed redevelopment of the Westport Weston Family Y’s downtown facility is closer to becoming a reality. Updated plans for the Bedford Square project, as it’s known, were filed Thursday with the Planning and Zoning Department.

The project, developed by Bedford Square Associates, would transform the Y facility into mixed-use complex of retail, restaurant and office space, as well as residential apartments. It would also include the construction of an underground parking garage, a public courtyard and wide tree-lined sidewalks.

Since it was first unveiled last fall, the project has been updated based on input from several town boards and commissions, residents and businesses, said Karen Johnson, spokeswoman for Bedford Square Associates.

“This has allowed us to create a better plan that succeeds on many levels,” she said. “It enhances the downtown area, meets community expectations and is poised for commercial success.”

The project calls for the renovation and repurposing of the historic Bedford building and the former firehouse. The Y’s Weeks Pavilion Complex, built in the 1970s, would be torn down, and the two buildings on the adjoining Gunn property at 35 Church Lane would be removed to make way for four new buildings.

One of the two buildings at 35 Church Lane, the historic Queen Anne-style home known as the Gunn House, won’t be torn down. Instead, Bedford Square has offered to have the home relocated to the municipal lot on Elm Street, Bedford Square partner and Westport developer David Waldman said. The home would be situated at the top of the municipal lot and would be elevated, allowing cars to park under it, Waldman said.

The costs associated with the move would be paid for by Bedford Square and the home would be gifted to the town, according to Johnson.

The approximately110,000-square-foot development would include 35,000-square-feet of residential space; the rest would be used as commercial space, Waldman said.

There would be 26 apartment units, 20 percent of which would be designated “affordable,” a large courtyard featuring outdoor seating behind the former firehouse and an underground parking garage with 94 spaces off Elm Street, to be built under the new additions on the Gunn property, said architect Mark Herter.

Changes made to the plans since they were first presented included lowering the height of the proposed new buildings on the Gunn property, setting third- and fourth-floor residential units farther from the street, and redesigning the facades, windows and sidewalks of the new buildings on the Gunn property.

Now that the plans have been submitted to the Planning and Zoning Department, the Planning and Zoning Commission is expected to hold a public hearing before June, Johnson said.

To read more about the project, visit the Bedford Square website .

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