A proposal under review by the city of White Plains would add 127 apartments to a pair of mostly unused lots on the corner of Hale and Maple avenues.
The development, presented to the White Plains Planning Board on Aug. 21, would feature two separate buildings, one eight and the other seven stories.
The proposal comes from Hale WP Owner LLC, a joint venture led by Martin G. Berger, principal of Armonk-based Saber Real Estate Advisors LLC and Jonathan Stein, founding partner of New Jersey’s Diversified Realty Advisors LLC.
The plans drawn by New Jersey architectural firm Minno & Wasko call for an east and west building, split by Hale Avenue. The two lots — 97-111 Hale Ave. and 100-104 Hale Ave. — are paved for parking, though only one is still in operation.
The building on the east lot would be seven stories with 70 apartments. The west building would be eight stories with 57 apartments. Each building would have two levels of basement parking, totaling 170 spaces.
Six percent on the units would be offered at rates affordable to residents making between 60 and 79 percent of area median income.
The plan for the two buildings is to offer larger units than much of the recent apartment construction in the city, according to project attorney Mark Weingarten, of DelBello Donnellan Weingarten Wise & Wiederkehr LLP in White Plains.
He said the developers want to offer the type of space desirable to people 55 and older.
“Empty nesters that are looking for the apartment downtown, and they need a larger closet, they need an extra room,” Weingarten told the planning board. “We think that the larger space is something that’s missing from the market and could help us rent our building.”
Between the two buildings, the development would add 36 two-bedroom and 80 one-bedroom apartments, along with 11 studio apartments. Some of those units would have balcony spaces. All of them would offer two walk-in closets and double bathroom vanities.
Both buildings would have rooftop amenity space for residents, including a fitness center, lounge and outdoor deck.
The proposal targets an area of the city that’s proven attractive to apartment developers. The property is a block over from DeKalb Avenue, where a six-story, 76-unit apartment building is under construction and the five-story, 56-unit La Gianna opened in 2014.
Across Maple Avenue, Lennar Multifamily Communities is seeking approval for the reworking of its mixed-use development plans on the former Westchester Pavilion property. If approved and built, the project would add two, 24-story residential towers with 707 rental apartments and 93,840 square feet of retail near the Hale proposal.
The Hale proposal comes from developers with recognizable names in Westchester County, as noted by Weingarten.
Saber is the co-developer of Rivertowns Square in Dobbs Ferry, a 450,000-square-foot development that includes a movie theater, apartments, restaurants and retail. The property was bought for $69 million in April by Regency Centers, a Florida retail manager. Saber developed the project with Chauncey Station Partners. Saber and Chauncey also teamed up for The Collection, a mixed-use project the city of White Plains approved in the spring that will add shops and apartments along Westchester Avenue.
Weingarten said construction on The Collection will be “getting underway shortly.” In the meantime, Saber has teamed up with Diversified Realty for this project. Diversified is leading the billion-dollar Edge-on-Hudson project in Sleepy Hollow, which is developing the former General Motors assembly plant with 1,177 units of condominiums, townhouses and rental apartments; a 140-room boutique hotel; 135,000 square feet of retail space and 35,000 square feet of office space.
“This is a real team, they have their financing ready and are very excited about getting this project underway,” Weingarten said.
The proposal will first require a special permit to go beyond the permitted number of building stories, as well as site plan approval from the city. The White Plains Planning Board recommended the city’s Common Council approve both.