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New Castle Town Board Aims for More Millwood Participation

CHAPPAQUA, N.Y. – During a discussion of a recently completed analysis of Millwood at Tuesday night’s work session, several New Castle Town Board members believed the report was missing one key component of the hamlet: input from its residents.

“Some of it seemed either self-evident or overly vague without any real analysis of the hamlet or specifically without any real analysis of what people in that particular market might want,” said Town Supervisor Susan Carpenter.

The analysis, which was carried out by Project for Public Spaces, focused on the market and demographics of Millwood regarding future planning.

Carpenter, however, expressed a desire to see more citizen participation in planning decisions for the hamlet, and said the board needs to make changes in order to engage the community.

“I’m not at all convinced if we have them come in and they sort of said we’re going to do visioning over at Westorchard that you get more than 15 people,” said Carpenter. “Unless we do something first.”

Members suggested sending out questionaires to residents, holding open forums, or keeping an open dialogue with Millwood merchants through emails.

One area of planning the board would like to hear feedback on is improvements to the North County Trailway. Several members believe that beautifying the trail and connecting it to existing retail should be a priority.

“One of the near and dear things we have is the trailway,” said council member John Buckley. “I’d like to safeguard that, I’d like to build some amenities around that.”

The Project for Public Spaces report will be discussed further at a joint meeting with the Millwood Task Force at Westorchard Elementary School on March 13. At the meeting, the board hopes to hear suggestions from residents about topics that impact those living in Millwood.

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