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October 16, 2019Cart

Business

by Westchester County Business Journal
by WCBJ

Greenburgh completes sale of Frank’s Nursery site to Capitol Seniors Housing

A rendering of Stonegate at Greenburgh.

The former home of Frank’s Nursery & Crafts in the town of Greenburgh finally has a new owner.

After owning the 7-acre site at 715 Dobbs Ferry Road for more than six years, the town sold the vacant property on Dec. 16 for $3.525 million to Capitol Seniors Housing, a company that plans to construct a 101-unit assisted living and memory care facility.

“I’m thrilled,” Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner said. “This took a long time. Finally, one less controversy in town.”

The senior living investment and development firm will build the three-story, 90,651-square-foot building on the property. Company officials said the $35 million construction project was scheduled to begin this winter. They said in a statement, and the new building is expected to open during the first quarter of 2019.

“We’re excited to build our first senior living community in the state of New York and bring a top-quality senior living community to the historic town of Greenburgh,” said Scott Stewart, managing partner of Capitol.

The new facility, called Stonegate at Greenburgh, will be operated by Northbridge Cos., a Burlington, Massachusetts developer, owner and manager of senior living facilities in Massachusetts, Maine and New Hampshire.

The senior housing will consist of 71 assisted living rooms, five of which will be affordable, and 30 memory care units. Assisted living units will include studio, one- and two-bedroom floor plans ranging from 350 to 900 square feet, while studio and one-bedroom memory care units will range from 350 to 650 square feet. The development will also provide 67 parking spaces.

Before the residences can be built, the property will need to undergo an extensive environmental cleanup. The site was contaminated in 2001 by 500 gallons of No. 2 fuel oil.

“We expect that the remediation of the contaminants will begin shortly,” Feiner said.

The site of the former Frank’s Nursery. Photo by Aleesia Forni

The property has seen its fair share of controversy since it was acquired by the town in a 2011 tax foreclosure. Greenburgh received offers from two separate sports facilities for the property. Game On 365 LLC said it would put up $1.7 million for the lot and made a promise to pay $1.3 million over 13 years. Ardsley-based House of Sports offered $3.5 million in an all-cash deal. Both companies threatened lawsuits if the town chose either offer.

The town then hired GA Keen Realty Advisors in 2014 and an auction was scheduled for later that year. Ultimately, plans for the auction fell through after the firm received feedback from bidders who were hesitant to make any offers without knowing more information about the environmental cleanup costs.

After receiving interest from four applicants, the town decided an assisted living facility was most desirable because it would not require rezoning.

“One of the most controversial properties in the town became one of the least controversial applications,” Feiner said of Capitol’s plans.

Capitol officials have said the site in Greenburgh was attractive because of the large number of residents in the surrounding area aged 45 to 64, a critical demographic metric for the company. The proximity to both the new Tappan Zee Bridge and the Sprain Brook Parkway also made it an enticing site.

“Greenburgh is a fantastic community, and we’ve been very pleased to work with area leaders to bring this project to fruition,” said Joe McElwee, principal of development at Capitol.

Representatives of Capitol say the senior housing facility will provide a residential use that bridges the gap between independent living and nursing care at around half the cost of a nursing home. The senior housing facility will provide residents with meals, exercise programs, personal care and transportation.

Founded in 2003, Washington, D.C.-based Capitol has acquired or developed more than 60 senior housing communities since its inception, including communities in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.