Rye Considers Zoning Change For Senior Housing Project

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A sketch of what the proposed development would look like on the corner of Theodore Fremd Avenue and North Street in Rye.
A sketch of what the proposed development would look like on the corner of Theodore Fremd Avenue and North Street in Rye. Photo Credit: Courtesy of Lazz Development

RYE, N.Y. -- The City of Rye is moving ahead in its consideration of a proposed senior affordable housing project.

The proposed development would see 54 units of senior affordable housing built on a plot of county-owned land a the corner of Theodore Fremd Avenue and North Street. It would consist of two buildings, each with 27 units, with rents ranging from  $900 to $1,300 a month.

The City Council has begun reviewing the project as it considers changing the zoning from a business district to senior housing. No site plans, traffic studies or environmental impact studies have been submitted to the Planning Commission yet, although the developers have requested that the site plan review and zoning change processes be undertaken at the same time.

"The property has been considered for many years as affordable housing, especially senior affordable housing, which is a great need not only in this community but in other communities," said John Colangelo, an attorney for Lazz Development, the company that will build the housing. The property would be restricted to prevent anyone under 18 years old from living there.

Norma Drummond of the Westchester County Department of Planning said that once they are built the units would be marketed to residents of Westchester, Fairfield, Rockland, and Putnam counties, as well as the five boroughs of New York City. 

"There is no local preference. The expectation might be that a greater percentage of applicants might come from the local area, from Rye town and Rye city," she said. Applicants would be checked for income eligibility and entered into a lottery for the chance to live in the apartments.

There has been some concern about some contamination that has existed in the soil. Drummond said that the state Department of Environmental Conservation declared the site clean, and has refused to perform additional testing. She also said that the contamination did not originate at the site, but migrated there from a nearby property.

There will be a site walk of the location where the building is being proposed on Saturday. The event will be held at 10 a.m. at the corner of North Street and Theodore Fremd Avenue, and developers and city officials will be on hand for residents who want to see the site and ask questions. There will be a public hearing on the proposed zoning change at the next City Council meeting on Wednesday, March 12.

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