A pre-application to convert Greenwich Woods, a skilled nursing home on 15.893 acres at 1165 King Street, to an 8-30g affordable housing development with 162 apartments, is on the Planning & Zoning commission’s agenda for Tuesday, Sept 14.
There would be a mix of one-, two-and three-bedroom units. Parking would increase from 119 spots to 248, plus 8 handicap parking spaces. The parcel is in the RA-4 zone.
Per CT statute 8-30g, 30% of the units would be designated as “affordable.”
Eagleview Holdings, LLC and Greenwich Woods Realty, LLC are the applicants.
This is the second large 8-30g development to take the town by surprise in a week.
On Friday, a pre-application was submitted from Eagle Ventures and SJP Properties to redevelop much of the east side of Church Street with a 192-unit building with seven stories under 8-30g. Eagle Ventures was founded in 2010 by Greenwich native James P. Cabrera.
During the P&Z pre-meeting briefing on Monday, the commissioners discussed some of their concerns about the Greenwich Woods pre-application, starting with waste disposal.
The facility is within 500 ft of Rye Brook, New York. When the property was originally developed, there was an agreement to tie into the Rye Brook. Greenwich Woods has a septic system in an adjacent field behind the building, but it’s not clear whether it can handle such a large development.
“To build an apartment building this big and rely on septic is going to be a heavy lift for them,” said commissioner Bob Barolak.
The commission said they would want “a deep exploration” from the Greenwich Health Dept, an assurance that the septic would be workable and that there would be no environmental impact.
P&Z commission chair Margarita Alban said Environmental and Septic two issues rise to the level of 8-30g, which otherwise exempt affordable housing developments from local regulations.
An added complication is that since the location is outside the town’s sewer boundary district, and the facility has a direct connection into New York, the property owner might owe the Town of Greenwich sewer assessment fees.
Meanwhile, at 900 King Street in Rye Brook, NY there is an assisted living and memory care facility under consideration, which might relate to the Greenwich Woods pre-application.
The commissioners also noted that Connecticut has regulatory power over nursing homes and would oversee the closing of one.
There are actually two facilities operating independently on the property. One is the nursing home, and the other is a 45-bed secure community dedicated to supporting those affected by Alzheimer’s and other cognitive conditions.
Another consideration is fire response time in northwest Greenwich and whether the applicant can fully equip the facility with sprinklers if required under building code.
Commissioner Nick Macri said another concern was height because the application refers to four stories, but the rendering appears to be five stories, which is higher than almost anything else in Greenwich.
“What is the fifth story there? Is it mechanical? Does it need to be so tall?” Macri asked.
The proposal is to add three stories to the existing two stories. Currently the bottom story is used for parking. The building footprint would not change.
“This has a lot of logistical issues that could rise to serious matters here,” Alban said.
The P&Z meeting on Sept 14 starts at 5:00pm. Click here for Zoom link info.