Fill The Spot: 281 State Street

Most recently, this held Connecticut Premium Scooters. What would you like to see in this space?

Today we're starting a new series, which we will post every Saturday at noon. We'll take a few photos of a vacant property in New London, find out some information on it, and ask what you'd like to see "fill the spot."

This week, we're taking a look at a property on State Street, one of downtown New London's "main streets" and sadly one that could use a lot more in the way of businesses. This property is listed as 281 State Street, the same address as the . The street-level storefronts of this property are currently vacant, including one that most recently held .

The property is listed by , which says that one storefront is a dividable 2,400 square feet while the other is 800 square feet. The lease is $12 per square foot plus utilities, and the listing touts the property's proximity to amenities such as the and . Whoever moves in would also be right next door to the do-it-yourself .

What do you think would be the perfect business to fill this spot? Let us know in the comments.

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Donna Pearlman February 04, 2012 at 05:12 PM
I would love to have a Five Guys Burgers and Fries (http://www.fiveguys.com/ ) there for those of us that don't want to leave New London and go to Mystic! Or a Fatburger (http://www.fatburger.com/home/ ). Or just a great burger place in the heart of downtown with reasonable prices and good quality food.
lion king February 04, 2012 at 06:28 PM
the new city law office and hire a full time lawyer to represent the city ,im sure you can get a good lawyer for less than we pay now ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,
Thomas Cornick February 04, 2012 at 07:58 PM
Structure does not appear to be locally owned a serious drawback for local first.
Jeff Brown February 04, 2012 at 08:52 PM
Fat burger would be awesome! Or maybe a Dave n Busters
Alan Green, Jr. February 05, 2012 at 12:17 AM
I think a little cafe like Monica's. Don't worry, Monica, I love your place, but you're a little far for the Mohican crowd. This place should be handicap friendly for some of the people upstairs. Love Hannifin's, but a bit dear for the Mohicaners. Look at what's upstairs from Mohican and see what THEY need. This should be THEIR hang. Bean n Leaf is for the hipsters, and, though some Mohicaners are in fact hipsters (from what I can tell), most are not. They're far more refined and worldly (not that Bean n Leafers aren't both, but many (like me) seem to prefer to be unrefined (at least while there)). So, I'd advocate a reasonably priced eatery. But make sure it's suiting the building it's in. If you've been up to the 11th floor (as I did for the first time today) you'll know these Mohican folks are used to the best of New London living. Something rich and guilded with marble accents would be cool, I think. In the meantime, some blow up photos of the Mohican accents in the windows would be nice. Blue Prints Unlimited could help you there. This is one of our greatest landmarks. Let's celebrate it! As much as I love Five Guys, I'd prefer to see our Downtown Chain-Free. I can visit Groton for a Five Guys. But a Mohicaner Cafe with a Five Guy -type burger? Yeah, that'd be great! And fries like Five Guys? Absolutely! Love this feature, Dirk! Keep it going!
Sara Florek February 05, 2012 at 03:07 AM
Drop in Day care. Stay and Play. New London Old General Store. Shop able retail.
Elissa Bass February 05, 2012 at 12:32 PM
Sara, I love the idea of drop-in day care, or something else kid-related. I'm sure with the number of office workers in the immediate downtown area, that would be a good business.
Tambria Moore February 05, 2012 at 01:04 PM
I like Sara's idea of a licensed facility for elementary age children - maybe with a monthly membership option and an hourly option. Yoga, aerobics, crafts, mommy and me...The seniors could meet relatives there, the working could use it in a jam, families being supervised by social services could meet there for indoor safe play and interaction, families visiting the library can get the wiggles out of their youngsters... during festivals it could offer simple child first aid, baby changing supplies and nap facilities.. I also like the idea of a boutique pet supply store for downtown pets, including grooming and organic treats
Marie Schoelles February 05, 2012 at 02:11 PM
I like the idea of a old style general store/ pharmacy. Seeing how close this location is to the Mohican, I think the residence would find it easy to get prescriptions without having to take a bus to the outskirts of New London. It would also be nice for the people who live in downtown New London to also have a transportation-free stop to get paper towels, toothbrushes and other cheap household goods. There is a place in Bar Harbor, ME called West End Drug Co that would be a nice model for this location.
David Irons February 05, 2012 at 02:19 PM
Donna, you don't have to go all the way to Mystic. There is a Five Guys in East Lyme too at 295 Flanders Rd. Personally, I would prefer to see a local eatery with good food. Perhaps something not found in this area such as German.
Sara Florek February 05, 2012 at 02:36 PM
I also think New London needs a visitor center. But the kind that has bins of rubber lobsters, penny candy's, New London Sweatshirts, brochures, etc. Though this obviously isn't the best location.
Pam Strollo February 05, 2012 at 02:41 PM
5 Guys would draw families. I'd go there. I do love the burgers at the newly remodeled "Commoner" on Bank Street--great and cheap! But it is a bar and would not take my teenager in there at night. He would def. go to a 5 Guys-- with friends too. Who wants to drive to East Lyme and Mystic for a burger? Not me. I am downtown for music and other local events and would never consider driving out of town to eat after an event. I would eat a hot dog from the street cart. How about a place to eat like NY East Village Veselka's? A plate of pierogies, cheap, now that sounds great! Or a falafel place.
Alan Green, Jr. February 05, 2012 at 03:08 PM
I'm with you, Sara! Would be great to have something like that closer to the train station. The old surplus store on Bank would seem ideal for something like that! I also wish we had more New London sweatshirts / t-shirts available. I was thinking it might be nice to have something like Sanctuary City New London 2012 I thought of that last night, joining the hundreds of Saturday night revelers spread throughout the hip venues featuring everything from punk at El n Gee to progressive rock at 33; from authentic NY rapping poets at Oasis to bachata dancing at Mambo; from the cool vibe of Jason at Dev's to the wildly parading queens at the Brass Rail, New London really is a 'sanctuary' from the conventional. It welcomes you no matter who you are and offers something you would be hard-pressed to find elsewhere. We have a unique culture here. Let's brand it and market it. Standing at Oasis last night surrounded by smart, creative, hip people, I realized this really is a 'Sanctuary' and we should own that. Of course some will choose to see only the negative of a beautiful word like that. I for one think we should celebrate it!
Tambria Moore February 05, 2012 at 03:33 PM
I'd hate to see any franchise compete with local business, and especially in the historic district. Five Guys or similar would create unfair competition with Kamp Dog and other non-franchised restaurants downtown. On the other hand a salad bar for vegans or a late night all age diner type eatery would be excellent and fill a void without unfair big-box advantages.
Alphonse DeLachance February 05, 2012 at 10:22 PM
Perhaps an art supply store that can offer painting classes and the like. With a great hands on section for the kids.
Sara Florek February 06, 2012 at 12:03 AM
Oh Art Supplies! That would be TERRIFIC downtown! :)
Sara Florek February 06, 2012 at 02:20 AM
It was AWESOME when Lee's Toy & Hobby was downtown. My kiddo thinks Sarge's is the "Toy Store" and I can see that and respect that. Sarge's 4-eva. But a real toy store. Even just for the holiday's.
Sara Florek February 06, 2012 at 02:24 AM
The kind of place that offers Baby Does Disco on a Friday night. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baby_Loves_Disco
Doc Halliday February 22, 2012 at 12:27 PM
A General Store. How about a Dollar General.
Stephen Hallquist March 17, 2012 at 09:30 PM
Just try to find one that is qualified in municipal law. They're few and far between.


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