Commercial projects getting off the ground

Del LeVasseur works on putting siding on a new commercial building at 40 Union City Road in Prospect Tuesday. -LARAINE WESCHLER/REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

PROSPECT — Construction on three commercial projects along Route 68 is well underway, with the first scheduled to open in mid-January, according to Mayor Robert Chatfield.

The metal frame of the 9,100-square-foot Dollar General store at 14 Union City Road is up, the floor is poured and grading on the 1-acre site has begun, but there’s still much more work to do in the next month and a half.

“I hope they make their schedule,” Chatfield said.

He said the chain store building will fit Prospect’s New England character with a brick veneer, lapboard and asphalt shingles.

The Planning and Zoning Commission’s recently adopted regulations for the gateway to the community ensured all new construction in the area has a colonial look, Chatfield said.

Just a few lots down the street, Jim Kollcinaku was overseeing site work on his father’s property Tuesday. The foundation for a 4,900-square-foot retail building is poured there, but the owners are still seeking a tenant.

Kollcinaku said he hopes the increased traffic along the road over the past decade will bring more customers. Traffic has about doubled since 2001, he said.

A traffic engineer for the Dollar General project told the Planning and Zoning Commission in July that traffic has increased 21.5 percent since 2012, mostly because of drivers trying to avoid construction on Interstate 84 between exits 23 and 25A in Waterbury.

Historically, this side of town has been quiet, Kollcinaku said, but with the three new projects, it’s starting to build up.

The metal frame is up for the new Dollar General store on Route 68 in Prospect Tuesday. -LARAINE WESCHLER/REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

Barring bad winter weather or other unforeseen problems, Kollcinaku said he hopes his project is completed by spring.

His father, who also owns the shopping plaza with Pizzeria Napoletana next door, has owned the empty parcel for six years, Kollcinaku said.

“There’s never a right time. There’s never a wrong time (to build),” Kollcinaku said. “It’s a big risk, but life is a risk.”

Moving down the street, Del LeVasseur was busy putting up siding on a new 18,000-square-foot building at 40 Union City Road on Tuesday afternoon. He said the work has been good and hopes to finish his portion of the project by Sunday.

Local business American General Investors is building the Stonewood Business Center with first floor commercial bays and second floor office suites.

The company’s website advertises the project as an “architecturally significant building” and one of the most visible buildings in Prospect.