Gary Hirsch, chairman of Rye-based developer Elk Homes, has told the Larchmont Board of Trustees that Elk Chatsworth LP is revising its plans for a mixed-use project in the village.
The original proposal was for a five-story, 26-unit condo building to be known as Centro Larchmont. It was going to have 5,000 square feet of retail space. The plan called for it to be built on two parcels totaling about one-third acre. The parcels were at 108-114 Chatsworth Ave. and 65 Wendt Ave.
“The project that we had been working hard with the village for nearly two years to bring to fruition is unfortunately not going to happen. We have lost the opportunity to acquire the Wendt Avenue property and so the project will be much smaller in scale than we had contemplated,” Hirsch told the Dec. 16 trustees’ meeting.
The project had drawn some opposition from residents who said that it was too large. “We’ve come forward with a much simpler, smaller scale project that we hope you will be able to move forward with expeditiously, recognizing that we have tried to be a good partner with the village,” Hirsch said.
He described the revised proposal as being confined to the Chatsworth Avenue property, with about 2,500 square feet of retail on the ground floor. The number of residential units would be cut back to 14, with one of them classified as affordable. There would be three full floors of residential with additional residential on a smaller fourth floor. The fourth floor would be only about half the area of the other floors.
Hirsch described the fourth floor as being set back at least 35 feet from Chatsworth Avenue “so it will be invisible to people walking along Chatsworth or in vehicles along Chatsworth, and it will be only 50 feet wide on the exposure facing Palmer Avenue as opposed to the 200-foot length we had in the original building; so it will be 75% smaller in exposure than we had originally projected.”
Hirsch said that the project would include about 18 parking spaces. He said a few would incorporate automated car lifts. “Think of them as tandem parking spaces,” he said, pointing to the success he had using car lifts at a building he constructed in Pelham.
Hirsch said that there is a need to replace the existing building on the site.
“All the utilities of the building that we own on Chatsworth were removed over the summer and the building, which was otherwise in terrible condition, will now only further deteriorate as we enter into the winter and become an even more derelict building,” he said. “We need a plan to take that building down and replace it.”
Hirsch said that all of the issues that might come up with respect to the new proposal were covered in reviewing the previous proposal.
“What I ask you to do is two things. First, consult among yourselves if you need be, in whatever fashion you do that and give us guidance that this is a project that you can support subject to a review of whatever documents you need to see and we’ll go ahead and draft and prepare new elevations, new site plans…but I don’t want to invest any more money in a project unless I know overtly and clearly that we have your support, at least provisionally.”
His second request was that the board take whatever steps it can that are appropriate to expedite a review of a new zoning amendment “so we can move to site plan and hopefully construction.”