Dear Better Larchmont Supporters:
Happy New Year! As we begin a new decade, we have an update for you on the Centro Project.
To recap, Centro’s original proposal was presented to the Village Board in April 2019, for a five-story, 27-unit building extending across the Chatsworth frontage and all the way back to Wendt Avenue, with an attached two-story parking deck on Wendt. Over the summer, concerns were raised by the Larchmont Planning Commission, the Larchmont Architectural Review Board, and the County of Westchester Planning Commission. In the fall, concerned Village resident coalesced to form Better Larchmont, and over 500 people signed a petition opposing the Centro Project as proposed for a host of reasons, including size, scale, traffic, safety, schools overcrowding, environmental issues and more. Preserve Larchmont also voiced its concerns about the project.
After several months of hearing overwhelming concern expressed by residents who registered their opposition through Better Larchmont and Preserve Larchmont, displayed anti-Centro yard signs, and attended monthly Village Board meetings in large numbers, as well receiving several additional consultant reports confirming those concerns, the Village Board informed the developer, Elk Homes, at its November 18th Board meeting that: 1) the parking garage should not be constructed after all; and 2) the scale was still too large, with some Board members recommending four floors instead of five.
At the December 16th Board Meeting, Elk Homes proposed a third version of Centro, which is significantly reduced from its earlier proposals. They have declined to provide new plans or renderings until the Village Board indicates its willingness to move forward with this revised proposal, but have provided the following details of the revised project in a letter to the Village Board dated December 17, 2019:
Elk Homes has asked the Village Board to pass a modified Zoning Amendment to allow this scaled-back project to proceed to the next stage. The Board has instructed the Village Attorney to prepare a new version of the Zoning Code Amendment that incorporates the parameters of this revised proposal and includes the option to grant the developer all five floors as requested.
This new Proposed Zoning Amendment will be on the Agenda for the upcoming February 25th Village Board Meeting -- NOTE this is a TUESDAY NIGHT -- when there will be opportunity for public comment. The meeting will be held in the Village Center behind the Library at 7:30 pm.
While Better Larchmont supporters are encouraged by the significant modifications to the Centro Project, it continues to advocate for a PLAN for the commercial district that will enable consistent and appropriate development for the long-term to protect our Village’s character and avoid preferential zoning.
Meanwhile, we urge concerned residents to attend the February 25th Village Board Meeting to express your views about the latest Centro Proposal and make sure the Board knows that we are closely monitoring the Centro Project and continue to be concerned about future development in and adjacent to our Village.