With construction already underway, several local and company officials gathered at the site of the new Executive Valet parking lot on Route 75 in Suffield. The gathering, including mascot Barker the Parker, celebrated the groundbreaking Wednesday morning.
Executive Valet owner Guy Piccolo purchased the business in 1998 after operating Piccolo's Valet in Windsor Locks since 1975. Located near Bradley International Airport and only minutes down the road from the current Executive Valet facility, the plans for expansion are two years in the making. Construction is slated to be completed for a November 1 opening.
"Our business has expanded over the last several years and we needed the additional capacity, plus we wanted a state of the art facility," Piccolo said.
"The timing is perfect," said First Selectman Tom Frenaye, on hand to participate in the groundbreaking ceremony.
Frenaye cited the increase in traffic and state plans for improving the developments in the area around the airport.
"I am so happy that I can do this project in Suffield," Piccolo, a Suffield resident of 15 years, said. "I raised my kids in town. We take pride in the operation, and I hope to make the town very proud."
The business offers shuttle service, express checkout and car care services in addition to a safe, 24-hour parking lot for airport travelers. They have a frequent parker program where return customers can earn points toward Executive Valet services.
Suffield Economic Development Director Patrick McMahon thanked Executive Valet for expanding their operations in Suffield and for using local contractors.
Elzear Roy, owner of Briarwood Homes, was also on hand and is the builder contracted for the construction. FEB Construction will perform the site work and is four weeks ahead of schedule.
"We are very happy to be able to hire local contractors in these tough economic times. We look forward to many, many years of successful business in the town of Suffield." Piccolo said.
Company mascot Barker the Parker, a big red dog, is a recent addition to the Executive Valet team. Barker participates in local parades and functions and spends time at New Britain Rock Cats games, mixing it up with Rocky the Rock Cat. The mascot also visits the Connecticut Children's Medical Center and other charity events during the holidays.
"We do some community service type things," said Executive Valet Business Development Manager Steve Lepow. "He puts a smile on kids' faces."
In addition to the Suffield locations, Executive Valet also has a lot and facility in Fort Myers, Florida.
The company is planning a grand opening in November when construction is complete.