Located an hour northeast of New York City, Stratford, CT has a stunning new Extra Space Storage facility that serves as a gateway to the town. This new self storage facility offers an expansive 92,000 square feet of rentable space, with various storage unit sizes and indoor climate-controlled storage.
The development was completed in January 2021 by Urstadt Biddle Properties, a publicly-traded real estate investment company (NYSE: UBA & UBP) and third-party partner to Extra Space Storage since 2014. Currently led by President & CEO Willing L. Biddle, the company has been in business since 1969 and specializes in grocery-anchored shopping centers in the suburbs and surrounding areas of New York City.
The new Extra Space Storage property in Stratford sits on a 3.5-acre parcel of land and is part of Knott’s Landing retail center. In 2018, UBP purchased the lot from a developer who had acquired it in pieces over time. “The area was notoriously rundown with partially abandoned and dilapidated houses,” said Stephan Rapaglia, Chief Operating Officer at UBP. “We used the space to develop a beautiful mix of storage and retail.” In addition to the self storage facility, a Chipotle restaurant and Starbucks coffeehouse will be part of the Knott’s Landing center.
Developments of this scale require a talented team of individuals to manage each of the project’s dynamic aspects. The project team included:
- Stephan Rapaglia, Senior Vice President & COO
- Andrew Albrecht, Vice President of Management & Construction
- James Aries, Senior Vice President of Acquisitions
- Kubby Tischler, Associate Vice President of Acquisitions
Construction of the Extra Space Storage building began in the fall of 2019 and was completed approximately 14 months later in January 2021. The foundation was constructed by building a “mat slab” instead of individual footings for each column. Although more expensive, this enabled construction of the foundation to be completed before the winter onset, which allowed the project to continue throughout the winter.
The team also continued construction through the COVID-19 pandemic and navigated other challenges with only minor delays. One such challenge was a dispute over an existing billboard on the property.
“The billboard owner objected to the height of the proposed self storage building and threatened to slow progress with a lawsuit,” James Aries shared. “To settle the dispute, the developer agreed to install a new billboard on another portion of the site.” This allowed the project to continue while still providing valuable advertising space along the adjacent I-95 interstate.
“When the project was complete, the town was so proud that they encouraged the developer to install a large sign on the wall facing the highway, which welcomes I-95 drivers by saying, ‘Welcome to Stratford.’”