by Alexander Roberts –
With a number of projects on the drawing board or in the approvals process, Tarrytown has established a committee to use a comprehensive approach to housing development and affordability. The Housing Affordability Task Force grew out of the village’s Comprehensive Plan, with a charge to “identify housing needs and trends to support current and future populations of the village, define opportunities within the existing stock, in future developments and with the tools available through land use planning, zoning and vision to incentivize and preserve integrated and affordable, workforce and middle income housing for the long term benefit of the community.”
“For the first time, we have a committee of professionals drawn from Tarrytown,” said Committee Chairperson Sadie McKeown, “with the expertise to analyze the collective impacts of different housing developments, where in the past each has been looked at individually. How do we meet expanding housing needs while preserving the unique character of our village?”
McKeown has had a long and distinguished career in housing and is currently Executive Vice President of the Community Preservation Corporation, a nonprofit affordable housing and community revitalization finance company that has invested $11 billion in various projects to date.
Other members of the task force include Tarrytown Village Trustees Karen Brown and Becky McGovern, Rose Noonan, executive director of the Housing Action Council, Peter Feroe, a senior planner and zoning expert for AKRF, and Craig Singer, Managing Director of Richman Mortgage Assets Company. In my role as executive director of Community Housing Innovations, I too am a member.
There are a number of projects being discussed with the potential for adding more housing units to the village, such as at the waterfront where a new overlay zone has been applied. The task force will consider the collective impacts of the projects so they are not considered in isolation.
At a recent meeting, the committee discussed the opening of the Wildey Street affordable housing development. After more than a decade since it was first proposed, the 12 affordable apartments are now fully occupied.
McKeown said, “While we are very happy that the affordable housing is now open, our task force will hopefully be able to provide a better framework and tools for the village to satisfy the need to maintain a mix of affordable and market rate housing to serve its residents, present and future.”