Broadalbin takes step to allow large housing development
BROADALBIN The largest housing project in village history is moving forward, but the project’s developer still must take the final steps.
The village is working with Geoffrey Brooks of Clifton Park-based Heritage Development Holdings on the project. Brooks is proposing to build up to 167 twin townhouses and single-family homes on 107 acres off Bellen Road.
The project would tie into the village’s sewer treatment plant, which would have to be upgraded to handle the additional capacity.
Mayor Eugene Christopher said he and village officials have produced an agreement that would require Brooks to spend approximately $2 million to upgrade the plant. The village board last week granted Christopher authorization to sign the agreement pending Brooks’ approval.
Brooks said on Thursday he has not seen the agreement and could not comment on whether he would sign it. He added, however, that he and village officials have been working with the understanding he would bear the cost to upgrade the treatment plant.
“Our discussions have been in that light in the past,” Brooks said.
Christopher said the deal is not “cut and dry yet. He [Brooks] is agreeable to signing one and is okay with upgrading the sewer plant, but it depends on what it says.”
Christopher said in the meantime, the village will start surveying the 107 acres, a prelude to annexing it from the town of Mayfield. “We have not taken the property over yet. It has to be surveyed. As soon as the survey is done, then we can annex it,” he said. “I hope before the end of the year to annex it.”
Christopher said the land also contains wetlands and will require a environmental quality review and approvals from the state Department of Environmental Conservation and the Army Corps of Engineers.
The issue of annexation almost stalled the project. When Brooks proposed his plan, he wanted sewer and water for it. But Christopher said village law requires the property to be in the village to receive these services.
Half the 107 acres lies in the town of Mayfield and half in the town of Broadalbin. The town and village of Broadalbin favored annexation while the town of Mayfield voted against it. The issue then ended up in state Supreme Court. Before a judge could rule on the annexation issue, the town of Mayfield and village of Broadalbin settled their differences.
Christopher said he resolved the issue by offering to return 50 percent of the sales tax money the village receives from the annexed portion of the property to Mayfield. In Fulton County, townships receive sales tax revenues based on their total assessed valuation. Without the revenue-sharing agreement, Mayfield would have lost out on sales tax revenues due to a decline in its total assessed valuation through the annexation, Christopher said.
Village officials estimated in 2011 the housing project could add $37 million to the property tax rolls and could annually generate $291,600 in property taxes for Fulton County, $575,959 for the Broadalbin-Perth Central School District, $17,678 for the town of Broadalbin, $11,246 for Mayfield and $127,309 for the village.
Christopher said the proposed housing project will be significant for the village. “We have nothing of this size,” he said. The village has seen about three new houses built in recent years, he said.
Brooks said the proposed houses will be modestly priced and that he believes they will sell. “We are building a similar subdivision elsewhere and the reception would be good [for these houses]. I feel there is a need for this type of product in market,” he said.
Christopher said Brooks will likely build his houses in phases, depending on market conditions.