There was no presentation by Arterial about the final plans for Hudson Connects, but there was a presentation at last night's Common Council meeting. It was made by Victor Salerno of Adirondack Community Development, the group that plans to buy the former John L. Edwards school building to develop affordable housing.
The rendering above shows what was proposed back in June, when the group made a presentation to the Common Council. Since then, the project, now being called "Hudson Heights," has changed significantly. In June, Salerno said it would cost "millions and millions of dollars to demo [the building] and cart it away." Last night, he announced they had decided to demolish the existing building after all and construct a new building in its footprint.
The new building is to have 150 apartments for people 55 years of age and older, with a target household income of 60 percent of the AMI (area median income). Salerno indicated that 10 percent of the units could be market rate, but "more than that will impact the ability to get financing for the project."
As the project is now being proposed, there will be 45 "efficiency" or studio apartments, 72 one-bedroom apartments, and 33 two-bedroom apartments. The building will be three stories at the front and six stories at the rear, where the land drops down sharply. There will also be a separate building on the site to house the Hudson Daycare Center.
Among the amenities promised for the building is a dog park, which suggests that, unlike many income-based housing projects, "Hudson Heights" plans to allow pets.
Salerno shared these preliminary renderings of what's being proposed.
He also reported on preliminary market research his group has done. The following is quoted from his presentation:
As part of preliminary community outreach, Adirondack, through its affiliate Mayfair Management Group LLC, has already initiated outreach to the community to gauge interest and process feedback. . . .
[T]he response has been overwhelmingly positive, where within only a few days and very limited online exposure to only a single portal, Adirondack almost immediately processed over 500 registrations from individuals who were interested in becoming residents, with the most frequent inquiry from prospects asking when the development would be complete and move-in ready.
The campaign was closed within one week, and we are fully confident that the community is responding in a very positive way to Hudson Heights. . . .
In the past, it has been indicated that the project would not be seeking a PILOT (payment in lieu of taxes), but a zoning amendment and a zoning variance would be requested. The zoning amendment would change the zoning for the site from R1 "One-Family Residence" to R4 "Three-Story Multiple Residence"; the variance would allow the project to exceed the four-story limit in the back of the building.
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