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07 July 2008

Petracco: Let's think about building a parking lot in Nutley

NUTLEY — Parking has always been somewhat of a problem in downtown Nutley, so Public Safety Commissioner Al Petracco is forming a committee to study the feasibility and practicality of building a parking facility in the business district.

Appointed to the committee were Vincent LaCurcio, vice president of the Nutley Chamber of Commerce; Sandra Carella, of the Nutley Public Safety Department; Fire Chief Fred Scalera; Tony Iannoarone and Robert Russignolo, civic leaders; Linda Diacheysn, citizen; and Ken Reilly, of the Nutley Board of Education.

“I am reaching out to business, industry and most importantly, the taxpayers of our community for input on this proposal,” Petracco said. “I will keep the public informed every step of the way as we proceed.”

During his campaign for a seat on the Nutley Board of Commissioners, Petracco pledged to explore new and innovative ways to attract businesses to the downtown business district. He stated the construction of a parking facility would boost the township’s economic base by attracting successful businesses and shoppers, which in turn would generate revenue to the township treasury.

He believes that the first step toward achieve this goal is to ensure attracting business owners who want to invest in Nutley — and, as such, ensuring there is enough available parking.

“We have a number of good selling points we should capitalize on, selling points which business owners look for when seeking locations to make big investments,” the commissioner said

Petracco says that the selling points included a police department that keeps Nutley a very safe place to work and live, a parks department which maintains beautiful parks, a public works department which keeps the township clean, a public affairs department which provides a number of public events designed to present Nutley as a wonderful place to work at and live in and a finance department which works vigorously to maintain a low tax base for home and business owners.

“All we need to do now is to provide an attractive, clean, and safe parking facility,” Petracco said.

The commissioner says with gas prices beginning to have a negative impact on many families — especially senior citizens — traveling to malls and larger shopping centers will soon become a thing of the past.

“I want to provide our citizens a world-class downtown shopping district with stores and shops which will meet their needs,” he said. “I have heard from many senior citizens who told me they don’t drive, cannot afford transportation to malls and do not have anywhere close to shop for clothes. I think it’s about time we find a way to attract a clothing chain which services senior citizens.”

The commissioner says in order to attract businesses to Nutley and to begin the process of revenue generation, “We will have to show investors that we have adequate, clean and safe parking available for customers. Once we have such a parking facility in place, I am confident the business community will respond.”


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