Playtogs Plaza sign finally being removed as part of ongoing construction project.

The Playtogs Shopping Center off Dolson Ave. in Middletown has been a popular destination for locals for decades. Playtogs was a department store in the plaza that people in the area on a budget would go many years ago. The iconic Middletown department store was dempolished in the fall of 2022 reportedly to prepare for constuction of a new Amazon distribution center. I remember going to an indoor flea market at the plaza some years back.

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A Facebook posting recently caught our attention from Barbara Martinez, regarding the Playtogs Plaza pylon sign, which is outdated and has become an eyesore to many. She also mentioned that many exciting new businesses are coming to the plaza, joining Fusion Eyewear, which has been there for a couple of years now, along with other businesses still located in the plaza.

We reached out to Barbara Martinez and she was kind enough to get back to us with great detail as to what's going on, and the long overdue facelift that the Playtog's Plaza is getting.

PLAYTOGS PLAZA ON DOLSON AVENUE MIDDLETOWN NY- The iconic Playtogs Plaza in Middletown is getting a facelift. If you happen to drive down Dolson Avenue in Middletown you will see the long standing massive pylon sign, that seemed like time had forgotten, is being torn down and in its place, the owner of the plaza will be erecting a new pylon to help highlight the local businesses located inside the plaza. Some may not know this but the plaza is actually split between the Town of Wallkill and City of Middletown. On the City of Middletown side, which is the building formerly home to Playtogs and National WholesaleLiquidators, the owners of that property have been doing extensive renovations to the massive structure that is soon to be completed. The rest of the plaza known as Middletown Plaza encompasses an assortment of local businesses, some long standing such as Middletown Cinemas, Saffron, Carvels, Mavis Tires and TD Bank and many new businesses that have recently joined such as Dominos Pizza, B&B Archery, TT Nails Spa, Tina’s Alterations and Fusion Eyewear to name a few.

The long standing pylon is not connected to the new distribution center but rather to the businesses recessed at the back and the far left of the plaza. One of the newer businesses, Fusion Eyewear, opened their doors just two years ago however this particular business has been in the plaza for over eight years. Fusion Eyewear’s owner Orlando Lallave says “I got my start in this plaza eight years ago and have seen a dramatic transition in that time frame, as the plaza has evolved so has my business.There were other possible locations for my business but I chose to stay in this plaza because I saw the enormous potentials and it’s resurgence was overdue."

Planet Fitness and Starbucks Coming to Plaza

Lallave went on to say that there are many upgrades still to come and they are excited to have tenants such as Planet Fitness and Starbucks on board. "It's a great bonus for the local community to shop that up until now had limited options.” His partner Barbara Martinez said “There is a renaissance happening, the City of Middletown has added sidewalks providing walkability and other infrastructure to Dolson Avenue. The plaza is attracting new businesses bringing new life to this side of Middletown. The businesses already here and those able to joinus will benefit tremendously from the strategic location and local residents will enjoy newconvenient shopping options and all that it has to offer.”

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The owner to the majority of the plaza Eric confirmed that Planet Fitness and Starbucks Coffee have signed on, with construction beginning very soon. Eric and his partners are currently in talks with other potential businesses, so the next two years will bring a lot of changes to the plaza. He has already made upgrades to most of the plaza and is working on upgrading the facade for the rest of the property. There will be improvements made to the parking lot and much needed curb appeal. Businesses looking for leasing information should contact Eric at (917) 566-8422 while spaces are still available.

The dismantling of the massive pylon sign, which some locals may describe as an eyesore but some as an iconic landmark tied to fond memories of their family shopping trips to Playtogs, represents saying farewell to the past and heralding the emergence of revitalization for this quickly growing community and the economic boom businesses on Dolson Avenue are experiencing.

A big thank you to Barbara Martinez and Orlando Lallave for their contribution to this article. Follow Fusion Eyewear on Facebook and Instagram.

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