North Castle Board Has Issues With Madonna's Housing Plan

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North Castle Town Board members noted issues such as density, traffic and the overall size of Frank Madonna's age-restricted housing proposal at its Feb. 13 meeting. Photo Credit: Michael Nocella

ARMONK, N.Y. – Developer Frank Madonna Jr. is pushing hard to advance his proposal for 55-and-up age-restricted housing on Armonk’s Old Mount Kisco Road.

He is even willing to build sewers for neighboring homeowners – on his tab.

However, when Madonna presented his latest proposal to the North Castle Town Board at its Feb. 13 meeting, board members objected to the density of the plan. Madonna wants to build 28 one- and two-bedroom units on his 3.6 acre parcel. 

“I have a problem with the density,” said North Castle Town Supervisor Howard Arden. “I don’t think we can just say because you need X number of dollars and units to build sewers you should have a great deal of density.”

Madonna, who purchased the property in several stages from 2008 to 2010, had hoped his presentation would result in the Town Board referring his project to the Planning Board so he could move forward with the site plan review process.

Madonna had relied on his willingness to pay for sewers as the main selling point.

The project, dubbed The Byram, is surrounded by neighborhoods that need sewers. It is well- documented that they have a notorious reputation for failing septic systems for more than 30 years.

“From what I understand, economics have always kept Old Mount Kisco Road from being sewered,” said Madonna.

Madonna said he is willing to pay for public sewer service, but suggested that 28 units would be needed to offset the expense and have the project make sense from a financial standpoint.

“My petition will include connecting all the residents within 100 feet of the proposed development,” he said.

“The amount of waste water that will be eliminated from percolating into the ground in this vicinity equals 1 million gallons per year," Madonna estimated. "I welcome anyone to contest the benefits of this project in regards to the health, wealth and safety of the residents of this community as a whole.”

Though Town Board members appreciated Madonna’s intentions for the property and his offer to pay for public sewers, it still had problems with density, traffic concerns and the overall size of the project.

“It’s going to be very difficult for this board to recommend this go to planning because this project seems to have changed quite a bit,” said Council Member John Cronin.

Council Member Diane DiDanot-Roth echoed Cronin’s evaluation.

“Hearing from the Town Board, they’re feeling like it’s a bit out of the scope of what they’re willing to accept,” she said.

The Town Board told Madonna that, instead of passing him off to the Planning Board without being completely behind his proposal, it would soon schedule a work session to iron out areas of concern.

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