RPW Group and NRP Group are a step closer to converting an underused parking lot to a $95 million apartment complex at 1133 Westchester Ave. in White Plains.
The Westchester Industrial Development Agency gave the developers preliminary approval April 18 for a $1.8 million sales tax exemption to build 303 apartments on the Westchester Avenue office campus.
The county subsidy would be supplemented by a mortgage recording tax exemption to be determined when the site is sold for a budgeted $14 million and proposed property tax abatement from the city of White Plains totaling nearly $10.5 million over 15 years.
The site is in an office park near the intersection of Interstate 287 and Hutchinson River Parkway, next to Maple Moor Golf Course.
The 70-acre campus at 1133 Westchester Ave. once housed IBM offices and now has tenants such as Chubb Insurance, the Hospital for Special Surgery, ITT Corp., The Journal News, and the Jackson Lewis and the Wilson Elser law firms.
This is the first joint project by RPW Group of Rye Brook, led by Robert P. Weisz, who controls the property, and NRP Group, a national builder and operator of rental apartments, based in Cleveland.
The project is being positioned as a work-live concept. The apartments would be built on a 20-acre section near the golf course and a 100 yards from the offices, where residents could work or make use of the beauty salon, child care center, cafeteria, and the dry cleaning, car wash and shoe shine services.
There is a strong demand for rental units, the developers state on their application for government assistance, in part because of the high costs of houses in the market. But there is a limited supply of apartments, “due to development constraints.”
The project has been named The Flats at Westchester. The plan is to build three, 5-story wood-frame buildings with a fitness center, swimming pool, business lounge, pet spa and a trail around the site.
The apartments would range from 621 to 1,567 square feet. Proposed rents would range from $1,890 to $2,565 for a one bedroom, $2,727 to $3,443 for two bedrooms, and $3,690 for three bedrooms.
Nineteen units would be leased as affordable housing to tenants with incomes at no more than 60 percent of the average median income. Proposed rents would range from $1,196 to $1,665 for one bedroom and $1,859 for two bedrooms.
The two-year project is expected to create 120 construction jobs and then eight permanent jobs.
The developers have not determined yet if they will hire local workers, use union labor or pay prevailing wages, according to their financial assistance application, but they will meet with union representatives to offer opportunities for work.
The IDA will hold a public hearing, before voting on final approval for government assistance. The project also needs site plan, zoning and planning board approvals from the city of White Plains.