Sherman entrepreneur Gary Goldring has become a major property owner in New Milford's village center.
With his latest purchase -- bought under the name, Bank Street Commericial Property LLC -- Mr. Goldring added 16,838-square-feet of additional retail space to his already significant holdings.
The 27 Main Street location -- built as and for many decades the home of Barton's Department Store -- houses seven retail tenant spaces.
By assessor's records, Mr. Goldring now owns 61,221-square-feet of retail business property in New Milford's downtown -- investing over $7 million along the way.
"I think it's great," Mayor Pat Murphy said. "He does a good job with his properties and he's very responsive to the needs of our community.
"He is very sensitive to how people feel about these buildings. It's always nice to have someone involved in our town who appreciates our community."
Since spring, Mr. Goldring has purchased 2 Bank St. (the longtime former pharmacy) and 18 Bank St. (the Nicholas building).
Tom Pilla, a former downtown property owner, sees Mr. Goldring's investments in the village center as "absolutely positive."
"Downtown real estate takes an enormous amount of capital to maintain," Mr. Pilla said Tuesday, "and Gary has that capital."
Mr. Pilla owned the 7 Main St. property for 20 years -- now the site of Tivoli restaurant, Tasty Waves and Nordica Toys, as well as second-floor offices.
"I'm delighted that Gary has this vision," he said. "It takes a tremendous infusion of capital to bring these properties back and to maintain them."
A complete restoration is now underway by Mr. Goldring of the Nicholas building, the site of Natural Marketplace, Swank on Bank and En Vogue.
Renovations are also ongoing at the former Housatonic Times newspaper office on the second floor of the 51 Bank St. building.
When those are finished, Mr. Goldring plans to begin facade improvements and interior renovations to his properties at 2 Bank St. and 27 Main St.
He plans to continue the facade look of Bank Street properties on Main Street, believing such renovations will bring good tenants and good businesses to New Milford's downtown.
"It's definitely a positive sign for the future that Gary and his team continue to invest in the downtown," said Luigi Fulinello, the town's economic development supervisor.
Mr. Fulinello lauded the quality of the interior and facade improvements made by Mr. Goldring in his properties.
He also noted he "hear(s) good things from Mr. Goldring's tenants."