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Riverfront 48-unit apartment project planned in Milford

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The Riverwalk Villas are shaping up to be a mid-rise development with 12-units per building.| PHOTO COURTESY OF LOCKWOOD DESIGN & CONSTRUCTION.

MILFORD — A new apartment complex overlooking the Mispillion River aims to breathe new life along Milford’s river walk.

Milton-based developer Don Lockwood, owner of Mispillion Street Partners LLC, is planning to develop Riverwalk Villas, a 48-unit development along the river in downtown Milford with each unit boasting a panoramic view of the water. The mid-rise project with four apartment buildings will be constructed at 401 Mispillion St. and looks to break ground in fall 2020.

The Riverwalk Villas is located next to the town’s dog park and along the mile-long path following the Mispillion River on the town’s south side. Lockwood hopes that the development will attract adults that will take advantage of the shops downtown available within a 15-minute walk.

“Placing something with the magnitude like this hopefully will change some things in Milford,” Lockwood told the Delaware Business Times. “We’re not targeting any specific age group, but perhaps people would enjoy the walk.”

Apartments will come in two- or three-bedroom units, with a minimum 1,400 square feet in floor space, and feature balconies and patios facing the river. A community recreation center will be on-site, but Lockwood Design and Construction Project Manager Tracy Mascelli said it was too early to say what amenities would be included.

Last July, Riverwalk Villas was awarded a $614,000 reservation from the state’s Downtown Development Districts (DDD) program, created to spur capital investment in commercial districts and neighborhoods. The program allows rebates up to 20% of the qualified real property investment.

This development has been in the works for five years under different names. It started as the Fisherhawke project complete with commercial space on the first floor. One of the early suggestions was a partnership with the city to rent kayaks out of the commercial space. But the Milford Planning Commission denied the plan, as it did not meet requirements for a Planned Residential Use Development and the application was withdrawn.

In January 2016, Lockwood filed another plan, this time without any commercial aspect and the Planning Commission blessed the preliminary site plan.

A building boom may be on the horizon for Milford. Planning and Economic Development Director Rob Pierce said 180 residential units were issued building permits in 2019. But many rising projects focus on single-family homes or townhouses. The last major apartment complex built was Cascades — now re-branded as the Willows at Milford — in 2012. The Willows has 76 units and plans for another 74 units in the future.

Other notable proposed developments that include apartments in the mix of housing include Brookstone Trace with 24 units; Watergate with 80 units; Cypress Hall with 288 units; Hickory Glen with 240 units and Simpson’s Crossing with 231 units.

By Katie Tabeling

[email protected]

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