BRIDGEPORT, CT - Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch on Thursday was joined by State Sen. Andres Ayala and city Economic Development Director David Kooris to kick off the demolition of the former Remgrit site at 889 Barnum Avenue. The long-shuttered factory building will be demolished to make way for the potential home of a second Bridgeport train station.
“A second train station in Bridgeport will be an engine for economic development for the East Side, East End and the entire City, that is why we have worked so hard to make the P.T. Barnum Train Station a reality. My administration has been working collaboratively with state and federal officials to demonstrate the need for a second train station in Bridgeport, because I firmly believe that a second train station is exactly what our City needs,” said Mayor Finch.
“With the commencement of this demolition, we have taken yet another positive step forward on project that will result in a tremendous asset to the City. In addition to the progress we’ve made on the P.T. Barnum Train Station, we are also cleaning up a site that has been an eyesore in the neighborhood for decades,” he added.
A feasibility study for a second train station, funded by a federal HUD, DOT and EPA Partnership for Sustainable Communities grant through the New York-Connecticut Sustainable Communities Program, was completed earlier this summer. After a year-long study process, which involved community stakeholders and regional experts, the Barnum Station Technical and Community Advisory Committees have determined that it is feasible to construct and operate a new Barnum Station on the site of the former Remington factory in the City’s East Side. This proposed new P.T. Barnum Station would improve transit and serve as a catalyst for redevelopment in the East Side, East End and adjacent neighborhoods by creating jobs and providing additional housing options close to transit.
The Barnum Station Feasibility Study sought to determine the feasibility of constructing a second rail station in Bridgeport as a catalyst for revitalizing the East Side and East End neighborhoods. Barnum Station is envisioned as an anchor for mixed-use development on adjacent parcels and is a key element of the City of Bridgeport’s sustainability plan: BGreen2020.
The Remgrit site (formerly Remington Arms), located on Barnum Avenue in the East Side, and once housed one of the largest munitions plants in the country.
Among the parcels located on the Remgrit site to be included in this demolition and remediation project are a 57,600 square-foot manufacturing building and an 8,800 square-foot boiler building. J.R. Vinagro Corp., of Johnston, R.I., is handling the demolitions and remediation project.
In 2011, then-State Representative Andres Ayala secured $1 million in bond funding to help pay for this demolition and remediation project. In 2013, Senator Ayala secured an additional $1.5 million in bond funding for this project.
“This critical revitalization of the Remington Arms property will work in conjunction with development going on across Bridgeport to greatly enhance the quality of life in the Park City,” said Senator Ayala. “The proximity of this property to the Steel Point project will make it one of the most important developments in the city, and I look forward to seeing this space put to use.”