Tag Archives: 1177 Post Road East

1177 Post Road East Meets The Beach

Westporters have watched with interest as 1177 Post Road East — the new 4-story, 94-unit apartment complex — nears completion.

It’s hard to miss: It takes up much of the land between North Morningside and North Turkey Hill, directly opposiste Greens Farms Elementary School.

Which means it’s nowhere near the water.

An artist’s rendering of the 4-story rental property at 1177 Post Road East.

That’s not stopping its marketing company.

A website showing off the property is — let’s say, “interesting.”

The headline reads “11/77 Greens Farms” (or perhaps “Greens 11/77 Farms” — it’s hard tell).

Technically of course the building is not in Greens Farms. The Post Road is the dividing line. Children moving into the new apartments will go to Long Lots Elementary School, not Greens Farms.

But okay, the Greens Farms neighborhood starts right across the street. Perhaps that’s why the marketing materials boast of “a coastal enclave rich with history and character.”

Without mentioning it by name, the website touts “Westport’s oldest neighborhood, lined with old stone walls weaving between pre-war colonial homes and beautiful estates, vast open meadows and saltwater marshland.”

There are no architect’s renderings of what the apartment building will look like.

There are, however, beautiful photos of:

  • A stand-up paddleboarder
  • Sherwood Mill Pond
  • A beautiful bedroom, and
  • What appears to be a woman wearing a comfy fall sweater.

A screenshot from the marketing website.

Besides “11/77,” there is one nod to the Post Road. It’s this, tucked away in a headline that once again references the water (the closest beach is Sherwood Island — 1.9 miles away, according to Google Maps):

“Combining Westport’s coastal charm with the convenience of shops, restaurants and services of the Post Road.”

The website says that studio apartments rent “from the $2000s,” while 1-bedrooms begin at $2,850. Extended-stay options are available for business travelers.

(Of the 94 units, 29 — 30% — are considered “affordable” under state 8-30g regulations.)

Want to know more? Or just curious how “11/77 Post Road” is being marketed to the world? Click here!

(Hat tip: Greens Farms Association and president Art Schoeller)

RTM Votes May Bring Changes To Town

Westport’s Representative Town Meeting made 2 important decisions last night.

In a 23-9 vote, the RTM denied a petition to overturn the Planning and Zoning Commission’s approval of a 4-story, 94-unit rental building on Post Road East, opposite Crate & Barrel.

The decision brings the property one step closer to construction — and the town closer to a 4-year moratorium on building additional “affordable housing” units under state 8-30g regulations.

Thirty of the units would be “affordable,” as defined by Connecticut law.

The newest design looks “more residential” than an earlier version, developer Philip Craft says. It includes 54 studio apartments, and 40 1-bedroom units.

The redesigned 4-story 1177 Post Road East rental property.

The redesigned 4-story 1177 Post Road East rental property.

The RTM also authorized $70,000 for design and engineering plans, for a walkway and restrooms at Compo’s South Beach. That vote was 24-2, with 1 abstention.

Greens Farms Resident Laments Housing Vote

Last night — in a 4-2 straw vote — Westport’s Planning & Zoning Commission signaled approval of a new 4-story, 94-unit rental property at 1177 Post Road East. The building would replace an office complex across from Crate & Barrel.

Plans call for 30 of the units to be “affordable,” under state 8-30g guidelines. That would make Westport more compliant with the controversial regulation — and earn the town an 8-year moratorium on further affordable housing construction.

A 15-year resident of Greens Farms is concerned about traffic density and safety, particularly around the nearby elementary school. She also fears that the proposal has not garnered much public attention. She writes:

While other developments are getting attention and being fought back, this proposed development is just slipping by.

Artist's rendering of the 4-story, 94-unit rental housing complex proposed for 1177 Post Road East.

Artist’s rendering of the 4-story, 94-unit rental housing complex proposed for 1177 Post Road East.

Traffic and density has already made driving on the Post Road similar to being on I-95. Now this development, close to new construction where Geiger’s used to be, is making our neighborhood look and feel like we are becoming Stamford or White Plains.

There may be little the P&Z can do. But my neighbors and I want to figure out how best to respond and fight for our quality of life.  Awareness of this issue needs to be raised. It’s getting lost with every other developers proposal on the P&Z table.

Click here for “06880+” — the easy way to publicize upcoming events, sell items, find or advertise your service, ask questions, etc. It’s the “06880” community bulletin board!

8-30g: To Be Continued

The Chinese call this the Year of the Red Fire Monkey.

In Westport, it’s the Year of 8-30g.

That Connecticut statute allows developers to override local zoning regulations if less than 10% of a town’s housing stock is “affordable” (according to state formulas).

Towns can apply for a 4-year moratorium from being subject to 8-30g if they can show “affordable housing equivalency points” equal to 2 percent of their housing stock. During the moratorium, towns can rezone, encourage mixed-income housing, or work with developers to build projects together.

Westport mandates that any multi-family housing proposal must be at least 20% affordable.

Of the proposed housing development at 1177 Post Road East, 30 of the 94 units would be "affordable."

Of the proposed housing development at 1177 Post Road East, 30 of the 94 units would be “affordable.”

But 8-30g overrides virtually all local regulations — height, density, location, anything really except public safety or environmental.

So any developer may offer a plan that includes 30% affordable housing.

He won’t say he’s selling 70% of his units at what are high-end market rates.

Right now, Westport is debating 2 proposals: Hiawatha Lane and 1177 Post Road East.

The 70 affordable units proposed for Hiawatha — off Saugatuck Avenue, near I-95 Exit 17 — while technically not part of an 8-30g proposal, would bring us over the points needed for the 4-year moratorium.

So would the 30 affordable units proposed as part of the 94-apartment building at 1177 Post Road East, opposite Crate & Barrel.

However, the moratorium would not take effect until either of those projects is actually built.

Until then, any developer can buy property in town, and file an 8-30g proposal.

Several housing developments around Westport — Hales Court, Sasco Creek, Canal Park, the former Saugatuck Elementary School on Bridge Street — prove that Westport cares about affordable housing. And we do it right.

Some of the housing at Hales Court.

Some of the housing at Hales Court.

The next couple of years, though, may see a bit of monkey business.

The developers’ — not the red fire monkey — kind.

94 Housing Units Proposed For Post Road East

Westport’s spotlight on affordable housing now shifts to the Post Road.

Real estate developers Phil Craft and Stephen Lawrence are part of a team hoping to redevelop the office building at 1177 Post Road East — across from Crate & Barrel, near Turkey Hill Road — to provide 94 residential units.

Thirty of those will be deemed “affordable housing,” under the state 8-30g statute.

1177 Post Road East today...

1177 Post Road East today…

The “adaptive reuse and redevelopment project” will renovate the current 2-story, 42,000-square foot office building. A 4-story addition will be built over the existing parking lot, on the 1.96-acre parcel.

The building is being designed as a green project, with LEED certification as a goal. Plans include a green roof system, porous pavement on outdoor parking areas, improved storm water drainage and treatment systems, enhanced landscaping and at least 2 electric vehicle charging stations.

...and a rendering of the proposed 94-unit housing complex.

…and a rendering of the proposed 94-unit housing complex.

Craft said that Westport needs “more affordable housing options” for teachers, firemen, policemen and other town staff and employees,” as well as more transitional housing options for “younger workers, recent graduates, relocated workers, retirees and seniors.”

Lawrence believes this is “the right project in the right place at the right time.” He says 88 units will be “almost entirely” studios and 1-bedroom;; only 6 will be 2-bedroom.

The site is zoned for commercial development, and is served by sewer and utilities. Fire and emergency vehicles will have driveway access on all 4 building sides.

Arthur Hersh, another developer associated with 1177 PRE Associates — the joint venture planning the project — cites “easy walking access to local shopping centers, stores and parks.” He also notes the location on bus routes, including Coastal Link and the commuter shuttle to Green’s Farms station.

1177 PRE Associates has submitted applications to the Conservation and Planning & Zoning Commissions for review.