EducationThe White Plains Examiner

French-American School Sells White Plains Property to Developer

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The French-American School of New York (FASNY) has sold its 130-acre property in the Gedney Farms neighborhood of White Plains to a residential developer.

FASNY, which educates more than 720 students at three locations in Mamaroneck and Larchmont, had been proposing to construct a new school campus on a portion of the property, but changed its plans after space requirements and needs of the school evolved and shifted over the last few years.

The plan had faced strong opposition from neighbors in the Gedney Association who were concerned about increased traffic that the new school would generate.

“The long FASNY saga is finally over,” stated John Sheehan, president of the Gedney Association Board. “It has been over 10 years since FASNY purchased the former country club and announced plans for a regional school complex. Locating such a facility in the middle of a residential neighborhood with limited accessibility to regional roads was always a bad idea. The effort to defend our neighborhood against this plan required significant financial costs and time-consuming hours. Numerous committees of neighborhood residents were formed to evaluate all aspects of the FASNY proposal. Countless public hearings were attended by vast numbers of the community as well as numerous e-mails and letters sent to our elected officials.”

FASNY purchased the former Ridgeway Country Club property in December 2010. Following a protracted approval process and ensuing legal battle, FASNY entered a stipulation of settlement with the City of White Plains in 2016, and, in 2017, obtained a site plan and special use permit for a reduced project for its Secondary School (grades 6-12) on 27.7 acres between Ridgeway, Hathaway Lane and Gedney Esplanade.

In 2019, FASNY listed the rest of the site for sale. The property is zoned R1-30, which permits single-family residential lots of 30,000 square feet each. The purchase price of the transaction between FASNY and The Farrell Building Company, based in Long Island, was not disclosed.

“We look forward to hearing from the Farrell Building Company,” Sheehan stated. “We expect that the property will be developed pursuant to the existing zoning which permits detached single-family homes on 30,000 square foot lots. Further, any development should be compatible with the existing historic character of the neighborhood while preserving as much open space and natural features for this designated environmentally sensitive site.”

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