First store opens in controversial mall

(07/18/03) MOUNT VERNON - There is a fight between Mount Vernon and Pelham over the construction of a shopping mall on Sandford Boulevard in Mount Vernon. The mall, built close to the border of both villages, angered Pelham officials because of increased traffic in the border area. But the border war is over now. The first store that opened in the mall on Friday was Best Buy, an electronics giant.

The fight between Mount Vernon and Pelham over the building of the mall took place in court. Pelham sued to block the development several times, but they lost. The mall, which is only a few blocks from the Pelham border, means a shot in the arm to Mount Vernon's economy. But many folks in Pelham said it means a traffic nightmare for them.

Currently, officials in Pelham hope that what they could not win in court, they can negotiate with the developer. For instance, they hope the developer will pay for things like a special traffic light at the entrance to Glover Field or the widening of Wolf Road, which is used to get on the Hutchinson River Parkway.

Still, when the summer doldrums end and the school year begins, many expect a traffic mess in the area.

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