Plans for the redevelopment of the former Good Counsel school campus at 52 North Broadway in White Plains took a major step forward Monday night when the White Plains Common Council unanimously voted to accept the environmental findings, zoning amendment and master plan for the 16-acre property.
WP Development NB LLC is looking to construct 335 independent and assisted living apartments for seniors, 28 townhouses and 48 multi-family apartments.
The Council’s action wraps up an extensive five-year review under the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) and establishes a Planned Residential Development (PRD) Zoning District for the site allowing for the mixed residential uses.
Remaining actions by city officials include a detailed site plan review and a review by the Historic Preservation Commission. The State Office of Historic Preservation has already given its approval to the redevelopment plan.
The alternative plan for the site that was agreed to by the Council was initially presented in January 2020 by WP Development. The plan reflected a significant reduction in scale, density and building height from an original proposal, as well as expanding the senior housing component and enhancing historic preservation elements, while maintaining open space on the site’s North Broadway frontage.
Specific elements of the plan include: 232 one-, two- and three-bedroom senior-restricted independent living apartments in a six-story building with a parking garage at the east end of the site, linked to a five-story building with 103-unit assisted living and memory care facility.
There will also be 28 two-story, three-bedroom rental townhouses on the north and south sides of the site. In addition, 48 multifamily apartments in a three-story building will be built as part of the preservation of the west façade of the former convent. More than 90 percent will be studio and one-bedroom units.
The approved plan will maintain the Chapel of the Divine Compassion for ongoing use, preserving the historic Mapleton House at its present location and preserving the west wing of the former Convent that faces North Broadway, while adaptively incorporating it as part of the new development.
Public access to the 2.3-acre front lawn of the campus facing North Broadway will be permitted and the entire campus will have extensive new landscaping. About 450 parking spaces are proposed and there will be no access from Ross Street except for emergency vehicles.
For more than 100 years, the property was exempt from real estate taxes when it was owned by The Sisters of the Divine Compassion for educational and religious use. Since its purchase in 2015, the property has been on the tax rolls, generating significant revenue for White Plains.
Once the proposed residential community is developed, it will provide substantial additional tax revenues to the City of White Plains and its school district.