The Block Island Times: Cherry Hill Lane construction underway

After Planning Board approval
Thu, 08/22/2019 - 6:45pm
Category: News

Construction of the New Shoreham Housing Board's Cherry Hill Lane affordable housing development project has received final approval and is now underway.

Chair Cindy Pappas, who spearheaded the project, said it would be time to “pop the champagne” if final approval was granted by the Planning Board at its August 14 meeting. In short order, Pappas got her wish, as the Planning Board unanimously approved the project.

The $1.4 million project involves construction of five single-family dwellings off Cooneymus Road. The project calls for constructing three three-bedroom homes and two ranch style two-bedroom dwellings. The three larger homes will be priced at an estimated $295,000 each, while the two smaller dwellings will be on the market for $240,000 apiece, totaling $1,365,000.

With the infrastructure site work completed, and documentation submitted to the Land Use department, the board unanimously approved two items: the Housing Board's “request for a financial guarantee in lieu of full completion of infrastructure improvements,” and the “final plan stage” for the project.

Prior to the meeting, Pappas told The Times that “in order to be granted final approval by the Planning Board you have to have completely finished all of the project's infrastructure work.” She said the board placed over $100,000 in escrow as insurance, “in the event that something is not done to the liking of the Planning Board. This is assurance that we are working according to the plan that was approved.”

Pappas said infrastructure work on the 4.5-acre subdivision property includes installation of roads, landscaping, septic and water systems, etc.

“All of the contractors are on schedule and being paid for their work,” said Pappas, who has been working on the housing project for about nine years. “This money that is in an escrow account is over and above” the $1.4 million budget for the project.

As for the final stage plan, she said, “The Planning Board has been through the plans a million times. Everything is being built according to the plans. There's been no change to the plans.”

During the meeting, board member Dennis Heinz asked Pappas if the homeowners would be able to rent the homes.

“The intent is for residents to occupy them year-round,” said Pappas. “Every year we will send out an affidavit to have the homeowners reassert that they are following the rules.” She added that there might be special dispensations, for illness, etc., but: “The expectation is that they are owner-occupied, year-round.”

Jenn Brady, the town's Land Use Administrator, said, ”Let's be sure that you're comfortable with everything that's been submitted.” The board seemed to agree that the application was in order.

“Does anyone have any concerns with this application?” asked Chair Margie Comings of her fellow board members.

To view the complete article, visit The Block Island Times

Courtesy of The Block Island Times

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