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Author Archives: Shari Winard

About Shari Winard

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Began working as the community liaison for NR Future in September 2016.

Shari Winard

December Monthly Meet-Up Recap


We had an enthusiastic group of 19 participants during this month's meet-up as the NR Future staff discussed the 2017 initiatives which NR Future will help facilitate in collaboration with community Champions and Supporters.  For 2017, RDRXR is investing in the NewRo Bike Share program which will be launched in the downtown corridor to coincide with May's National Bike Month. The city of New Rochelle is investing in developing the cultural arts district downtown; for further information please read the report: New Rochelle Arts + Cultural District Plan. After considering the most popular feasible projects from, NR Future will focus upon Open Streets, a monthly/quarterly Art Walk and a Night Bike Ride.  All attendees stated which they were interested in and how they would like to be involved as either a supporter or champion.  All three initiatives need both Champions (leaders) and Supporters (assistants) to help organize, promote and participate in the events.  Which of those might you want to be involved in as a champion and which would you want to support?

After the presentation and discussion of the initiatives, community liaison, Shari Winard reminded attendees to support grant winners by "liking" their ideas on the NR Future website.  Past grant winners from August through November

as well the current winners, need community

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Name: Shari Winard

Short bio:

Began working as the community liaison for NR Future in September 2016.

This member hasn't submitted any entries yet.

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RXR in the News

RXR's Seth Pinsky said the key to keeping Westchester County competitive is to improve its transit connections to New York City.


Westchester County must become more competitive with New York City by allowing denser downtown development, unifying local governments and improving rail connections to Grand Central Terminal.

That was the advice given by Seth Pinsky, executive vice president at RXR Realty, which has big development plans for New Rochelle and Yonkers.

Pinsky spoke Thursday at the UJA-Federation of New York's Westchester Business and Professional Division's Fall Breakfast and he outlined steps that Westchester County's leaders could take to seize the opportunity to create communities similar to New York City's at more affordable prices that would attract young adults to the region.

NEW ROCHELLE: RXR proposes replica 1920s marquee for its residential tower

MILLENNIALS: We want more than nightlife

VIEW: Westchester needs millennials

Pinsky noted that Westchester County's population growth has slowed, with young adults and empty-nesters leaving the county for New York City.

"Whereas in 1980, 26 percent of county residents were 18 to 34, today the figure is 20 percent," said Pinsky, adding that those young people who remain have greater challenges. "Today 42 percent of 18-34-year-olds live with their parents, up from 36 percent in 1980."

This trend makes the county less marketable, said Pinsky.

"As Westchester loses in the competition for the young and the aging, especially those who are aging and have means, it's also losing the unique skills they each bring to the county's workforce. This in turn has a dramatic impact on the desirability of Westchester and other surburban counties to businesses," said Pinsky.

Pinsky said the key to keeping Westchester County competitive is to improve its transit connections to New York City. He noted that RXR is investing $200 million in downtown Yonkers just a block from a Metro-North train station because the trip to Grand Central Terminal is just 30 minutes, or less time than it takes to commute to Grand Central Terminal from many parts of Brooklyn.

Elected officials, especially those in southern Westchester County, must also adopt development plans that will allow the suburbs to share in the growth happening in New York City. That means denser, more urban landscapes in the downtowns that appeal to young adults and empty-nesters who don't want to drive.

Pinksy noted the New Rochelle officials have rezoned a huge portion of its downtown to create about 10 million square feet of development. With that new zoning, RXR is preparing to build a 28-story, mixed-use tower with 280 rental units.

The third step that Westchester County needs to take is encourage its patchwork governments to work for a common purpose of redesigning and rezoning suburban downtowns so that developers aren't scared away.

"We must take bold steps," said Pinsky. "We must make communities across the region more desirable and we must do so by focusing in particular on our suburban downtowns, areas with great potential that have remained shackled for far, far too long."

written by Ernie Garcia

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Name: Shari Winard

Short bio:

Began working as the community liaison for NR Future in September 2016.

This member hasn't submitted any entries yet.

Westchester biz leaders to bring gigabit broadband to county as part of Smart Growth pla

A powerful group of Westchester businessmen is leading a drive to bring gigabit broadband, new business and innovation to the county’s four largest cities.

“This is nothing short of revolutionary for our county,” said William M. Mooney, Jr., president and CEO of the Westchester County Association.



“Smart growth is what we’re about, and gigabit broadband will be the game-changer. Nothing will have transformed Westchester as much since the opening of the Tappan Zee Bridge 61 years ago.”

The Westchester Business Association has created Blueprint for Westchester that it calls “a vision for economic vitality.”

At a press conference this morning, the Association announced it is launching a public-private partnership to spearhead Smart Growth initiatives in Mt. Vernon, New Rochelle, White Plains and Yonkers.

Leaders of the four cities will sign a Smart City ComPACT to work with the WCA to bring gigabit broadband to every household, business, healthcare, and educational organization in the next three to five years.

Mooney said it is the first such compact between cities in the nation.

Under the terms of the pact, the cities will seek joint funding, share best practices, develop joint federal and state legislative agendas, and collaborate on creating innovation districts, among other things.

“Across the country, cities have been taking the lead in bringing gigabit broadband to their communities,” said Mooney.

“Likewise, by joining together with the WCA in this monumental community effort, Westchester takes a critical step in modernizing its digital infrastructure, closing the digital divide, sparking innovation, making our county competitive again, creating jobs, and realizing municipal efficiencies. We are creating a vision for the next 30 years.”

The WCA is in the process of putting together a Steering Committee for Smart Growth, comprised of members of Westchester’s cities, healthcare, biotech, and education sectors, and business and nonprofit communities, who will help to determine sources of funding and the county’s needs and opportunities.

The WCA also has hired Joan McDonald, former New York State Commissioner of the Department of Transportation and a nationally recognized expert in economic competitiveness, sustainable development and transportation solutions, as a strategic advisor for The Blueprint for Smart Growth, a concept McDonald described as  “new urbanism, where cities are livable, affordable, innovative, and sustainable.”

William Cuddy


William V. Cuddy,  a senior executive with CBRE in Stamford and chairman of the WCA’s Blueprint for Smart Growth, told the press conference, “Westchester is unique; all the elements are here.

“We have a burgeoning biotech and healthcare sector, 14 colleges and universities, parks, lifestyle, space, diversity, and are more affordable than Manhattan or Brooklyn. But most of all, our cities are 30 minutes from the heart of a world capital.

“People want to live in desirable locations with an urban feel. They want proximity to work, diversity, fine dining and entertainment, and to be in close proximity to others who share their interests.  And with New York City running out of affordable space, that presents a huge opportunity for Westchester.”

Cuddy emphasized that Westchester was not looking to become New York City’s ‘sixth borough’ but to complement it.

“Our position is unique,” he said. “The world’s largest biotech company, Regeneron, and the world’s largest information technology company, IBM, are located right here, as are the world’s top healthcare systems … so the potential is absolutely tremendous.”

The plan was unveiled at a press conference this morning


He noted that the four Westchester cities signing the Smart City ComPACT, are in various stages of downtown development, and that billions of dollars are being invested across the board.

“New Rochelle and Yonkers are in the process of upgrading their downtowns; Mt. Vernon has begun to rezone; and White Plains is broadening transit-oriented development. There are as many people commuting to White Plains as are commuting from White Plains. That’s a sea change,” he said.

Gigabit broadband will make possible, for example:

  • telemedicine and population health initiatives on a much wider level;
  • municipal efficiencies such as controlling traffic patterns in real time;
  • enhancing communications for first responders who need to share large amounts of data more rapidly and securely;
  • more online education in real time;
  • enable businesses and others to download large files and videos in seconds rather than hours.

Most places in the United States do not yet have gigabit broadband, where information is transmitted at close to the speed of light. One gigabit per second is roughly 200 times faster than the typical broadband speed in the United States. The WCA said it will be considering speeds that will exceed five gigabits per second.

Cuddy pointed out that throughout the United States, where there is smart growth, other patterns emerge.

“There is a trajectory,” he pointed out. “Where there is smart growth, you find innovation districts. Where there’s innovation, there’s investment. And where there’s investment and innovation, you’ll find millennials and “talent”. And where there’s talent, there are companies that want to employ that talent. And that spells growth. And growth puts in motion housing that’s affordable, super-speed broadband for communications, modern forms of transportation systems, and much more.”

Mayors of the four cities signing the ComPACT also spoke at the press conference:  Noam Bramson, Mayor of New Rochelle, Mike Spano, Mayor of Yonkers, Tom Roach, Mayor of White Plains, and Mayor Richard Thomas of Mt. .

“Entrepreneurship and innovation are critical to our future growth in all aspects of our economy – retail, healthcare, financial services, education, transportation, manufacturing, IT, entertainment, you name it,” said Mooney.

“High-speed connectivity will be mandatory, therefore, for economic success and social mobility in the 21st century. All of us will need to be connected at home, in offices, and in public spaces. And, as more and more people work from home, gigabit broadband is a must. So, with smart growth and gigabit broadband, the future is here.”


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Name: Shari Winard

Short bio:

Began working as the community liaison for NR Future in September 2016.

This member hasn't submitted any entries yet.

October Monthly Meeting Re-cap

Grant Applicant Presentations

Last night's NR Future monthly meeting was centered around meeting the two new liaisons, Shari Winard and John Sanders, discussing changes in the NR Future office and grant programs as well as listening to the presentations of all six grant applicants and deciding collectively which ones would receive the NR Future Five grant money.

John began the meeting with affirmations to motivate the crowd and get them fully engaged.  Shari then discussed the mission of NR Future and the need to reevaluate the five initiatives so they are better aligned with the New Rochelle community's needs.  We then proceeded with updates from previous grant recipients with the results of their grant projects.  ArtisanNR shared the successful implementation of her Market Maker bags and how creatively all ages enjoyed designing their own reusable bags. The project was well received and the BID Farmer's Market asked ArtisanNR to create Halloween trick or treat bags during the final fall festival celebration on October 29.

Operation Prom's Fashion University grant provided scholarships to several children in foster care during the summer and fall semesters.

The New Rochelle Public Library Foundation will be hosting their Murder Mystery Night Gala Fundraiser on Oct 29.

After the updates, we heard from all grant applicants and the attendees voted on the two proposals which they wanted to receive the $500 NR Future Five grants and which one would receive the $250 grant for the Creative Arts & Culture initiative.

Grow! Lincoln Park Community Garden/Lincoln Park Conservancy: "Garden Compost Bins Paint Project" and Remington Boys & Girls Club: "Community & Cops Basketball Game" were granted the 2 $500 grants, Mesh Print Studios: "Salon Gathering" received the $250 grant for the Creative Arts & Culture initiative, Ground Floor CoWorking: "Sprucing up North Ave" received the $250 grant for the Public Space & Storefront Beautification initiative and Tiffany Rey: "Fashion Budget Blog and how to shop in New Rochelle" received the $250 grant for Millennial  initiative.

Mesh Print Studios's David Krinick led the presentations with his proposal for a salon gathering, a series of monthly gatherings in the spirit of the classic French Salon, will be held partly to amuse one another and partly to build community and increase the knowledge of the participants through conversations which will foster creative endeavors in New Rochelle.  Following David, Tiffany Rey explained how her Fashion Budget Blog helps millennial women find affordable fashion on a tight financial budget so  they can help look their best with what they can afford while shopping in New Rochelle.  Then Linda Tarrant-Reid began Grow! Lincoln Park Community Garden's Compost Bins project with a brief history of the community garden and how it commemorates New Rochelle rich history.  Judith Weber than explained how a group of 8 to 12 year olds from the Remington Boys & Girls Club, would work under her guidance to create an artistic design based on a theme that represents the organic garden - grow! Lincoln Park Community Garden - and use the compost bins as their canvas.  

  20161018_200832Roy Gilwit, Ground Floor CoWorking, jumped in to share the inspiration behind his grant proposal to spruce up his block through the fastest and most economical way to beautify a building or storefront is by putting flower pots or planter boxes out front.

20161018_201144Aaron Williams, Remington Boys and Girls club finished the evening with his proposal to bring the New Rochelle community together to meet, greet & get to know the NRPD/NRFD through playing a basketball game against each other.

Profile photo of SWinard

Name: Shari Winard

Short bio:

Began working as the community liaison for NR Future in September 2016.

This member hasn't submitted any entries yet.

NR Future and the New Rochelle Street Fair Beer & Wine Garden

NR Future Beer and Wine Garden at the New Rochelle Street Fair

Thanks to the inspiring help from VolunteerNY, our enthusiastic volunteers and the creative efforts of Lily Kimberly Flowers. We were all ready to open the NR Future Beer and Wine Garden at the New Rochelle Street Fair before the crowds joined us.

Over 300 New Rochellians enjoyed the NR Future Beer and Wine Garden thanks to the delicious drinks and food from Yonkers Brewery, Marina Grille, AJ's Burgers and Texas Roadhouse. Participants kept out of the drizzle and brief sunshine with the airy tents from AmandaBear Party rentals. Some people rested briefly in the food court while others hung out for a couple hours afternoon finishing their meals. There was no shortage of entertainment, as we were set-up directly opposite the stage. Overall, we are glad to have created a positive experience during the street fair.

Profile photo of SWinard

Name: Shari Winard

Short bio:

Began working as the community liaison for NR Future in September 2016.

This member hasn't submitted any entries yet.

  • NR Future Monthly Meetup Recap March 2017 +

    We began the meetup with a delicious meal provided by Beechmont Tavern and a variety of participants both regulars and Read More
  • NR Future Monthly Meetup Recap February 2017 +

    Although the meeting began with a few hiccups, we ended with three productive brainstorming groups focused upon implementing the three Read More
  • NR Future Monthly Meetup Recap January 2017 +

    We held our first meetup of 2017 with a good mixture of returning and new participants who enjoyed a light Read More
  • December Monthly Meet-Up Recap +

    An enthusiastic group of participants discussed the 2017 initiatives which NR Future will help facilitate in collaboration with community Champions Read More
  • October Monthly Meeting Re-cap +

    October's monthly meeting had a nice turn-out as there six grant applicants giving presentations and community members were interested in Read More
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