As many Westchester communities scramble to identify areas for county mandated affordable housing units, the Town of Mamaroneck is attempting to stay ahead of the pack by moving forward with plans to rezone a business district on Boston Post Road for residential use.
At a July, the Town Board revisited a 2004 residential zoning analysis performed by the NYC-based BFJ Planning which looked at potentially allowing residential development in three business districts on Boston Post Road, north of I-95 and Metro-North Railroad.
At last week's meeting, the board voted unanimously to contract with BFJ Planning in the preparation of a generic Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), an analysis of the potential impact an action may have on the environment and part of the State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR) process. Once the EIS draft is complete, it will be open for public comments, which will eventually be incorporated into the final EIS.
“This really is the next step to moving forward,” said Town Supervisor Nancy Seligson.
The town is contracted with BFJ for a maximum fee of $14,500 for the project.
In addition to the EIS, BFJ will expand the 2004 analysis to include four additional areas: Boston Post Road between and the dealership; Boston Post Road between the Village of Larchmont and New Rochelle borders; Myrtle Boulevard between North Chatsworth and Madison Avenues and Fifth Avenue between Madison Avenue and the New Rochelle border.
But completion of an environmental study may also benefit the town in other ways.
“If a developer comes along and wants to build houses and business in a residential area in this zone, will they have to go through a SEQR process? Will it make it more attractive for them to jump in,” asked Councilman Ernie Odierna.
“Yes, it will show that we took the initiative to change the zoning, that we’ve done the initial analysis so that they just have to do the specifics,” said Seligson.
For a more detailed look at the proposed zoning changes, please visit the town's website here.