Bishops Corner Redevelopment Update

There have been rumors that portions of Bishops Corner will be redeveloped in the future, ala Blue Back Square.

Tonight the Bishops Corner Neighborhood Group held an informational meeting to talk about potential redevelopment of another parcel in the area, 2558 Albany Avenue, seen below.


Gregg Nanni, the General Manager of owner/developer Prospect Enterprises, gave a presentation about the proposed plan. As a little background, Prospect Enterprises also owns the adjacent property that houses Staples, Panera, McDonald’s, etc.

2558 Albany has been commercial space for approximately the last 30 years and is currently used as office space. The existing property poses some difficulties, as access to the parcel is limited by entrance and egress heading West only. Additionally, the building was originally a farmhouse and the redevelopment of the existing building wouldn’t be the highest and best use.

Prospect Enterprises is proposing razing the existing structure, regrading the property to reduce the grade to be more compatible with what currently exists in the area, and building a new structure on the existing site. Here’s a picture of an initial concept…


The footprint of the structure would be approximately 5,000 square feet, for a total of 10,000 square feet divided between two floors. The external style of the building would be a New England shingle style architecture, which would help it blend with the neighborhood, as it is in a transition zone near residences.

In the design, Prospect Enterprises is very concerned about the impact on residential neighbors. They are also looking into the possibility of LEED certification to formally recognize energy efficiency which would take into account building materials, using passive solar for energy, and a zero lumens border in order to reduce light pollution.


At this point, the proposed tenants for the building would be a bank on the first floor and medical offices on the second floor. Mr. Nanni indicated that there may be minor changes to the tenant proposal, but that economic demand for medical offices makes it a very viable possibility.

A few other interesting things of note that came out of the meeting…

1. This is all in the preliminary phases at this point. There have been informal meetings only. A formal application may be made later this spring or in the early summer.

2. The Historic District Commission has already been consulted and is willing to consider the removal of the existing building.

3. There will be a cross connection to the Staples parking lot in order to facilitate entrance and exit from the East on Albany Ave.

4. Mr. Nanni indicated that Edens & Avant have been tight lipped about their development project and he has no visibility into what they are planning on the opposite corner at Bishops Corner.

It was nice to see a developer that seemed genuinely concerned about his developments’ impact on the area residents.

I’ll keep an eye out for updates on this project and other happenings in the Bishops Corner area. Many West Hartford residents (and Town Council members) want to know what’s going on, but there is currently a lack of public information available.

9 thoughts on “Bishops Corner Redevelopment Update

  1. Wonderful Report!
    Although we are just dying to know what Edens and Avant is going to do.
    Well Done!

  2. Thanks for the report, Amy. It’s interesting to get a preview of one of the smaller-scale developments at this general location, compared to what is likely to come in the near future.

    I’m a little disappointed that the proposed site plan doesn’t bring the structure closer to the street edge to aid in making the area more walkable. That is the trend in form-based zoning code these days, and it’s what is making Blue Back Square a relatively pedestrian friendly place (on the sliding scale of walkable places in West Hartford). The site appears to be very auto-oriented. I hope that’s not a sign of things to come at Bishop’s Corner overall, which could use a total reorganization of its approach to parking and how people on foot (or bike, for that matter) are meant to get around.

  3. They did talk about the walkability of it. They very much want to put in sidewalks and make it more walkable, but something was mentioned about DOT owning the land and it would have to be approved by them. I’m not sure what the outcome will be.

  4. I think the walkability aspect is ridiculous. This property is located directly on a state highway which carries at least 20,000 cars a day. That fact will not change and traffic is only going to get higher over time. These same points where made with regard to the dentist office that was proposed across the street some years ago. All sorts of walkways can be mandated, but most people will simply not use them. We all know it, so let’s not burden the developer with extra costs.

    This is an auto-oriented site and nothing will change that. Better to keep it back from the road in a formula that people are accustomed to and percieve as safe. Save the zoning trends for discrete, off-road areas like Bishops corner where people can park and then walk around on streets which are lightly-travelled, not state highways. Blue Back works as a pedestrian-friendly area because a state highway does not run through it.

  5. How come they are proposing this after Rosenberg’s idea across the street at the iron works shop got axed?

  6. Across the street there was a proposal to build a dental office, few floors, zoning hated it. Think the guy moved to land lease deal in Newington. They ought to lower our taxes with Blue Back!!!

  7. I supported Rosenberg’s proposal for the project at the Iron Works Shop. He bent over backwards to assuage the residential neighbor’s concerns and unlike the current project, the Iron Works Shop has always been a commercial site. Yet, Rosenberg was turned down for his smaller size project that also looked like a New England home.

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