Cedar Commons - BOT Submission - 2-3-20.pdf

Christina Griffin’s rendering of Cedar Commons

A public hearing on the site plan for Cedar Commons, a mixed-use development proposed for 41-45 Cedar Street, will be held at the Dobbs Ferry Village Board meeting on Tuesday, March 10, at 6:30 p.m.

The property is owned by Cosmo Marfione, principal of Cedar Commons, LLC, and president of the BDC Group of White Plains. The 9,350-square-foot lot Marfione purchased for $1.5 million in February 2018 increased to 14,162 square feet, partially through the purchase of land from South Presbyterian Church, 343 Broadway, which is behind the property.

The site plan was approved by the planning board last August, after three public hearings, and by the architectural and historical review board this past January, after four meetings. Both boards recommended to the trustees that the current design be approved.

The site plan calls for a three-story building with one or two glass-fronted retail spaces on the 2,000-square-foot ground floor, two brick-façade residential stories of 15 two-bedroom condominiums ranging in size from 998 to 1,674 square feet, including two “affordable” units; a steel-fenced roof deck and a bulkhead; and an underground garage with a street-level driveway entrance on Cedar Street.

The building height would be 40 feet, conforming to the village code; the addition of the bulkhead would bring the total height to 49 feet.

There would be 24 parking spaces in the garage, including one for handicap parking, and four for retail employee parking. If the board of trustees grants a $15,000 PILOP (Payment in Lieu of Parking) for three on-street spaces, the total would be 27, as required by the village code. The code requires one parking space per unit, plus one-quarter space per bedroom.

The plan also includes a vest-pocket park next to the property line of Zion Episcopal Church, at 55 Cedar Street, and replacement of South Church’s sanitary and storm sewer services.

Construction of Cedar Commons would require demolition of the existing one-story building that is home to Piccola Trattoria, owned by chef Sergio Pennacchio; Caffe Latte, owned by Basilio Colaizzi; and Cedar Gifts & More, owned by Eddie Marji.

A late-1800s, two-and-a-half-story house containing three residential units behind the retail portion of the building would also be demolished. 

According to a Feb. 2 letter to the board of trustees from project architect Christina Griffin of CGA Associates in Hastings, the proposed development incorporates sustainability features, including energy-efficient windows, a “green” roof, recycled materials, LED lighting, a recycling and composting center, and an irrigation system using “harvested” rainwater.

Marfione’s letter states that the proposed development would increase the tax revenue from the property “by tenfold (1,000 percent) from $42,000 to $444,000.” David Smith of Planning & Development Advisors in Yonkers provided that calculation.

In an email to the Enterprise, Marfione wrote that the cost of the condos had not been established, but would be “comparable to Print House lofts.” Two-bedroom units at The Print House (the former Oceana Building) at 40/50 Chestnut Street (with its retail ground floor at 75 Main Street) were priced at $757,000for 1,200 square feet up to $2,150,000 for 2,599 square feet.

Marfione is asking the board of trustees to close the public hearing and to grant site plan approval of the project.

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