Milford Plaza Undergoes Renovation

By Terry Rogers

A familiar location in Milford is getting a significant facelift. The Plaza at Milford on North Dupont Highway is undergoing a $4 million renovation that includes construction of several new retail locations between Peebles Department Store and Donut Connection. Angela Tsionas-Matulas of Tsionas Management, who owns the center, says that she expects Milford Plaza to have a completely different look once the renovations are complete.

The upgrades to the center include a completely renovated façade, overhang and lighting replacement and sidewalk additions. The front of The Plaza, which has remained basically unchanged since the center was completed in 1973, will now have stone-stucco columns, adding a more attractive, aesthetic look. The parking lot will be completely repaved as part of the renovation as well.

“Advanced Auto and Olympia Sports are moving into the new retail space being built, and we are in negotiations with several other tenants for the center. We are also working on adding another pad site as well,” Ms. Tsionas-Matulas said.

The traffic patterns for the Plaza at Milford will also change, Ms. Tsionas-Matulas stated. Based on Del-Dot requirements, the entrance from Northwest Front Street into the Donut Connection parking lot will be closed, and curbing is already in place as part of that change. The entrance next to Carlisle Fire Company will reopen after construction is completed, so the center will still have two entrances. Ms. Tsionas-Matulas believes that the new traffic pattern will provide better flow for parking. The addition of a drive-through window at Donut Connection will also be an added convenience for center visitors.

The Plaza at Milford was built by Raymond Masten and Brown Thawley, who purchased the land from a member of the Draper family. After the death of Brown Thawley, Mr. Draper purchased the shopping center from Mr. Masten and added additional retail space, including the theaters and Ames in 1973.  Mr. Draper further expanded the center by adding the building that now houses Peebles.  He also added the building that housed Bonanza, and now is home to La Tonalteca. In the late 1970’s, Leggett, which operated a store in downtown Milford for many years, built a new location at the center, and moved the downtown store to the location that is now Peebles. Milford Plaza Cinema, one of the first tenants of the Plaza at Milford, drew many people there until it closed in the early 1980’s. Teenagers and young adults fondly remember “cruising the Plaza” on weekend nights as a way to pass the time.

The upgrades to The Plaza at Milford are an example of Milford’s growing retail community. Madison Rogers who handles leasing of the center for Legend Properties, Inc. is encouraged by the interest retailers have shown about opening a location in Milford, and expects the improvements to generate even more interest.

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