A plan to purchase land to increase downtown parking received the unanimous approval of the Planning and Zoning Board (P&Z) at its Dec. 16 meeting.

In a procedural vote known as an 8-24 approval, the board showed its support for the city purchase of downtown properties at 44-64 River St., 0 River St., 145 High St., and 0 Railroad Avenue. The actual decision to purchase the properties rests with the Board of Aldermen, which will need to consider the matter at an upcoming meeting.

The State Bond Commission approved a grant of $4.99 million at its Nov. 19 meeting to assist Milford with the land purchase.

The intent is to increase parking in downtown Milford in several phases, including a two-story parking garage that the city itself would finance. The final project is expected to create more than 300 new parking spaces, along with a mixed-use development.

The largest parcel is 44-64 River Street, which houses the Corner Convenience store and several smaller businesses in a 15,394-square foot building on 1.28-acres of land. According to the Milford assessor's database, the parcel was valued in 2013 at $1,675,490. This property and the adjacent 0 River Street are both owned by Joseph Agro of Agro River Street LLC. The property at 0 River Street is a 0.38-acre parking lot and was valued at $449,710 in 2013.

Delco Brothers Property Group of Weston owns two other parcels. There is a 4,000 square foot building on 0.38 acres at 145 High Street, which was valued in 2013 at $560,960. There is also 0.28 acres of vacant land at 0 Railroad Avenue, valued at $111,480 in 2013.

Click here to read our earlier article about the proposed land purchase and parking plans