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Dear Mayor Rosenblum and Village of Mamaroneck Trustees:
As a resident of the Village of Mamaroneck, I am opposed to the rezoning of the Hampshire Country Club property that has been proposed by the owner of the property for the following reasons:
- The proposed development is grossly out of character with the surrounding community and is not permitted under current zoning laws. A 100+ unit condominium apartment complex with a 250+ car garage would be larger than the Post Road building of the High School and inappropriate in the middle of a single-family residential community.
- Rezoning would create a dangerous precedent that could lead to rezoning of other similarly zoned properties and potentially a drastic alteration of the character of Mamaroneck Harbor.
- Rezoning is contrary to the Village’s Comprehensive Plan, and at odds with designation of the property as a “Critical Environmental Area”. Hampshire property is 1 of only 7 “Critical Environmental Areas” in the Village’s Comprehensive Plan which calls for lower density rezoning of Hampshire.
- Increased traffic and safety concerns. Hundreds of additional daily trips resulting from the development will exacerbate current traffic around the Hommocks School and along Hommocks Road, Eagle Knolls Road, Weaver Street, the Post Road, Palmer Avenue, and in Orienta. The two primary roads leading to the development, Hommocks Road and Orienta Avenue, are not designed to accommodate this increased traffic. The increased safety risks to our children around the Hommocks School are significant.
- Flooding danger. The storm surges in Hurricane Sandy, 1992 Nor’easter and other storms submerged most of the golf course and large chunks of access roads. In fact, a man drowned during the Nor’easter when his car was pushed off Eagle Knolls Road onto a flooded golf course. Large areas of the golf course flood frequently during major rainstorms. To approve this rezoning in an area known for significant flooding, especially today when most government officials are calling for reduced building in flood prone areas, is irresponsible.
- Lack of offsetting benefits to the community; increased pressure on community services, including schools. While the owner/developer claims that the Village will realize significant increased tax revenues from the development, the development may represent a net cost to the Village or provide only modest additional tax revenue. Property tax revenue from condominium units is generally significantly less than tax revenue from single-family homes. Also, the proposed development would require significant additional municipal services and, particularly given the flood zone location, could expose our first responders to additional risks.Despite the owner/developer’s statements that the residents will likely be “empty-nesters,” there is no assurance of that. The units will include 2- and 3- bedroom apartments, which attract families with school-age children. The school system is already over-taxed, and Central School, the elementary school to which children at the development would be assigned, is already almost filled to capacity.
- Other potential costs to the Village. Because a request for rezoning is a legislative action, the Board of Trustees may refuse to consider a petition for rezoning as of right. This is not a decision that may be challenged. However, if a rezoning petition is accepted for consideration, the costs to the Village and the time required of the Board of Trustees, in connection with defending drawn out legal actions, will be significant.
Please reject for consideration a petition for rezoning of Hampshire to accommodate the currently proposed development.
Thank you for your consideration.