This past week saw several signs of activity as site work on the commercial infill and redevelopment project along West Chocolate Avenue got underway. Hershey Towne Square will add some 32,000 square feet of space for restaurants and other businesses.
According to RVG Management & Development Company, they have received commitments for approximately 85 percent of the space. If all goes according to plan, the new construction will be ready to open in Spring 2018. While not all contracts have been completed, it has been reported that the tenants will include Primanti Bros., Jersey Mike’s Subs, Tropical Smoothie Cafe, and Starbucks.
In addition to the new space along Chocolate Avenue, RVG also is completing work on the existing three-story building–converting it into class A commercial office space. “While our efforts to help to facilitate the development of multi-story, mixed use buildings and additional parking at the site were not successful, we believe that we’ve had a lot of success working with the developers to get a really great one-story plan,” said Justin Engle, Downtown Hershey Association Vice Chair and Derry Township supervisor. “We need good ‘built form’, in other words buildings that are properly scaled on sites that are designed to be consistent with smart growth principles for downtowns. Tenants will come and go but the built form could be there for a century or more.”
In addition to the new building construction, the project will improve sidewalks on the north side of Chocolate Avenue and will construct necessary transportation improvements that will be coordinated with Derry Township’s streetscape improvements in 2018.