Annsville Circle to Become Hub of Enhanced Waterfront District

Today’s Annsville Circle looking northwest, with Camp Smith left of center. Photo: Scott Snell of SDS Imagery, LLC

The Town of Cortlandt has assembled a $40 million infrastructure package that could transform 40 acres of undeveloped land from the Annsville Circle north into housing, offices, retail shops and a hotel over the next several years.  

The chance to turn this stretch along Route 9 into a thriving portion of Northern Westchester is the result of several years of planning and economic development work by town officials. 

“It’s a tremendous opportunity. This area is ripe for development,” says Cortlandt Town Supervisor Dr. Richard Becker. “Right now, those properties are mainly contractors’ yards and not the appropriate entrance to Westchester County, Peekskill and Cortlandt for people coming down here on Route 9 or the Bear Mountain Extension and the bridge.” 

Cortlandt officials began the process by rezoning the area from highway commercial to mixed-use in 2022 to fit the goals of the town’s comprehensive plan.  

The rezoning now allows housing and retail development in four zones that were created in the town’s new Annsville Waterfront Enhancement District. 

“We have extensive waterfront from Buchanan and Verplanck all the way to the Annsville Circle,” Becker said. “There’s a beautiful Annsville Creek on Route 9 and along the Bear Mountain Extension. 

“We’ve even had interest for a hotel resort type of property because of the Annsville Creek, where you can access the water and engage in water sports, including kayaking.” 

The new Waterfront District faced two obstacles before development could occur — constant flooding and no utility hookups for sanitary sewers and water.  

“The problem with the Annsville Circle itself is that it floods,” Becker said. “The $24 million federal grant arranged through Senator Schumer’s office will provide the money to the New York State DoT to do the work.” 

United States Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer announced in April that $23.96 million will be given to the New York State Department of Transportation [DoT] to raise a small segment of Route 6 in the town of Cortlandt — from Roa Hook Road to Camp Smith — by about seven feet. 

The Senator said the funding with ensure the roadway remains passable when sea levels rise and to reduce the risk of roadway closures due to flooding during severe weather. 

“By raising this critical stretch of roadway, a vital corridor for Camp Smith where our New York Army National Guard train,” Schumer said, “we are helping keep our communities safe from flooding, ensuring emergency vehicles will still be able to service these areas, all while creating new, good-paying jobs, laying the foundation for a more resilient Westchester.” 

The funding comes from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Promoting Resilient Operations for Transformative, Efficient and Cost-saving Transportation Grant program, which was funded through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment & Jobs Law.  

Dr. Becker explained that this new project will follow a current one that is rebuilding the bridge on the Bear Mountain Road near Camp Smith. He said that in addition to ending the flooding problems, the new project will create a tighter rotary at the Annsville Circle, with less merging. “It’s poorly designed and very scary, and never would be approved that way today.” The work is expected to begin this spring or summer and could last up to two years. 

The $14 million project to bring sewers to the Annsville and Continental Village area is also critical for development. The money is coming from a $7 million Westchester County grant, $1 million in federal money through Congressman Mike Lawler and a $6 million, 20-year bond paid for by property owners in the newly-created sewer district.  

The sewer district will run from Annsville Circle and Table 9 restaurant north to the Rock Cut. “For Sale” signs are posted on several of the properties along the Route 9 corridor just north of Table 9. 

With such great potential for a rare opportunity to develop prime land in Westchester County, interest in building is already high.  

“There are over 40 lots that can be redeveloped,” Becker said. “We had a meeting at Table 9 with owners about a year or so ago and they are all interested in connecting and they are all interested in redeveloping their properties.” 

Expressions of interest aren’t confined to local property owners, he added. “We’ve met with at least three developers who have successfully developed in other communities that are interested in putting mixed-residential and commercial retail space there.”  

Samples of possible development illustrated in the town’s District plans (shown here) include a four-story plus penthouse mixed-use building, a six-story hotel and restaurant with brick and glass facade, and wide promenade to create a waterfront attraction with space for multiple users. Brick and Colonial-style architecture is featured. 

Several large multi-family apartment buildings would be a prominent part of the development, accompanied by retail stores to serve the new community. Office space is another possibility. 

Cortlandt’s affordable housing rules require that 10% of new projects be designated as affordable. “I hope to see even more affordable housing,” Becker said. “I think this will allow schoolteachers, public employees and full-time employed people with dual incomes to afford our community.”  

So far, reaction to creation of the new Annsville Waterfront Enhancement District is positive. “I think all the local businesses are thrilled. They all either want to expand or they have failing septics that need to be replaced,” Dr. Becker said. 

Jim Roberts is a veteran journalist whose Peekskill roots stretch back generations.


  1. Where is new waste water going Peekskill is adding new housing development now they want to add more development with our adding any additional compacity to the sewage treatment plant. Anyone who has been on the Bear Mountain Parkway can tell you the smell is horrendous. They plan on dumping more in treated sewage into Hudson River then attract tourists. Where is the ” Environmental” groups?
    The Town of Cortlandt has thousands of sqft of empty commercial space why add more . This Town board is a one trick pony we need new ideas.

  2. While we can appreciate improvements to the area around the Annsville Circle it’s hard to fathom how this area can handle any additional traffic, which this development will add to the already atrocious traffic in this area Yes, let’s address the flooding issue and the redesigning of the traffic circle, but let’s not bring more traffic to this area.

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