Say no to Hebrew Home plans


To the editor:

The Riverdale community and I strongly oppose the Hebrew Home’s proposed construction of luxury CCRC housing in the R-1 SNAD zoning district.

We fear the “domino effect” of proposed construction of the Hebrew Home/RiverSpring multi-story apartment houses in the R-1 zoning district along the Hudson.

It is sincerely felt that the Riverdale community and the Community Board 8 land use committee must be aware of the potential disastrous “domino effort” that such a project would have. 

Fundamentally, once the Hebrew Home is able to obtain a special permit, the Schervier Home property will be next to want to construct luxury CCRC housing in the R-1 zoning district. From West 227th Street to West 259th Street, all of this R-1 property will be fair game for developers.

This will result in a de facto end to R-1 zoning in Riverdale along the Hudson. 

Respect Riverdale. Respect Riverdale zoning. Respect SNAD. Respect, protect and preserve the character of Riverdale.

To be crystal clear, we are not opposed to the construction of a continuing care retirement community by the Hebrew Home. In fact, we enthusiastically support the Hebrew Home’s CCRC proposal for cottages. The Hebrew Home presented this scheme at a prior CB8 land use committee meeting.

We oppose the granting of a special permit for luxury CCRC apartment houses that would not be affordable to 95 percent of the Riverdale/Kingsbridge/Marble Hill population. We support the need to construct affordable CCRCs for the elder community in Riverdale. Clearly, there is a citywide need.

We oppose, however, the construction of luxury high-rise apartment houses that the average cost would be well over $1 million, and maintenance of $8,000 per month.

We support the construction of CCRC housing for the elderly that all income groups can afford. We oppose non-City Planning Commission-compliant CCRC housing that is incompatible with the single-family residences within the zoning district.

We support the construction of any CCRC structures that are consistent with the scale and appearance of all single-family residences within the R-1 zoning district.

We oppose the construction of any CCRC project by the Hebrew Home/RiverSpring that doesn’t preserve and protect the scale of R-1 zoning.

We urge the CB8 land use committee do its homework. Review its own history in creating SNAD and zoning changes that the prior CB8 land use committee had accomplished.

Today’s federal government is reversing accomplishments by the prior administration. CB8 land use committee members should not be complicit in doing the same by undoing what their predecessor and elected officials had accomplished before.

Martin Zelnik

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Martin Zelnik