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May 9, 2019

E. Windsor senior housing breaks ground

Photo | Jim Michaud/Journal Inquirer East Windsor First Selectman Robert Maynard, left, and Sen. M. Saud Anwar, D-South Windsor, look over the site after Tuesday's groundbreaking ceremony.

Local officials celebrated the groundbreaking of a 122-unit senior housing facility at 20 North Road on Tuesday, praising it as a facilitator of economic growth.

New York company Calamar is developing the property, a 55-and-over housing development expected to open next summer, and its vice president of facilities, Marc Guizzo, said East Windsor has been a strong partner.

Guizzo said the company has been happy to work with a town that “rolls out the red carpet instead of the red tape,” and he said the town’s demographics match well with the age-restricted development.

“It’s a great community — we’re lucky to be here,” he said.

The three-story building will have one- and two-bedroom apartments and common areas for residents, including a lounge and a community room with a kitchen.

Calamar has said the development represents a $16 million investment in East Windsor.

Sen. M. Saud Anwar, D-South Windsor, co-chairman of the Senate Housing Committee, said the development hits the six key components of any housing project: “location, location, location, and timing, timing, timing.”

“You’ve nailed it,” he said. “You’ve come at the best time to a community that is growing in a manner that is very exciting.”

First Selectman Robert Maynard said the project represents economic growth. Other projects in the pipeline include Sardilli Produce and Dairy’s planned 202,000-square-foot produce warehouse on South Water Street and the Tribal Winds Casino, which would be located near Calamar’s project at the old Showcase Cinemas site.

Maynard said that he is 73 years old and plans to move to the development “when the Department of Motor Vehicles takes (my license) away,” because he will be able to walk to the casino and to interact with other seniors in the facility’s community rooms.

Guizzo said that Maynard could take advantage of Calamar’s “Connect 55+” program, through which the company offers services to residents such as exercise facilities, yoga classes, and trivia games.

Chamber of Commerce Chairman James Richards called the development a “triple win for the town” because it will bring needed housing to the community, broaden the tax base, and provide local businesses with additional customers.

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