The owner of the former Elmwood Country Club, Ridgewood Elmwood Preserve, has submitted five proposals for the redevelopment of this 106.4-acre property: one for multifamily condos, two for multifamily townhouses with fee simple ownership (100 percent assessment) and two for single-family residences (SFRs). 

The two SFR proposals are zoning compliant, whereas the three townhouse proposals are not in accordance with the Greenburgh comprehensive plan, nor are they in compliance with the Greenburgh zoning ordinance. These townhouse proposals of 159 or 175 units compared to 113 or 119 SFRs need two zone changes — down-zoning from R-30 to R-20 and a planned unit development (PUD) designation which would result in a density increase of between 34 percent to 55 percent more than the two SFR proposals. 

It is questionable whether the Town could prevent the townhouse owners in the future from converting fee-simple ownership to condo ownership resulting in the Town not receiving the expected amount of tax revenue. The applicant's attorney would not provide his legal opinion on this matter. 

This increased density will result in a substantial increase in traffic on Dobbs Ferry Road (Route 100B), a single-lane road each way, which accommodates three school districts and a Westchester County bus line. 

For the past four years, there have been 4,473 incident calls made by the Fairview Fire Station #2 (corner of Dobbs Ferry Road and Worthington Road), 6,120 police/EMT calls in the Worthington-Woodlands area, and 144 accidents on Dobbs Ferry Road between the Sprain Parkway and Route 9A. We are cognizant of the fact that there will be additional traffic from the development of this property with 113 or 119 SFRs, but substantially less than from the development of 159 or 175 townhouses. 

Granting these two zone changes for multifamily townhouses will set a precedent which will allow down-zoning to any large parcel of land — the five remaining golf courses in Greenburgh or any large camp property, i.e. Mohawk or Hillard. 

According to the Greenburgh Conservation Advisory Council's SEQR findings — FEIS (March 4), “the current zoning rules existed in the zoning code when the applicant bought the Elmwood property. Amending the zoning code is a legislative act. The town board has the unfettered right, in its discretion, to maintain the Town’s existing zoning, and is under no obligation to approve the application” for multifamily townhouses. 

 

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