Cold Spring Rejects Plans for Affordable Housing Units
COLD SPRING -- The town of Cold Spring shot down the idea of building affordable housing units within an established neighborhood at Tuesday night's city council meeting.
Hundreds of residents came out to the meeting to voice their concerns about building a possible affordable or income based apartment complex in the Northpointe neighborhood.
Many homeowners in the Northpointe neighborhood feared their property values would decrease, crime would increase and the overall appearance of their neighborhood would diminish if this building project was approved.
Resident Bruce Price says the location of the project needs to be moved to a more central spot.
"If you're going to put townhomes, apartments or whatever, put them down here [close to downtown] where those folks who may not have transportation. You've got brand new walkways, brand new bike paths, all of your businesses are down here, it would benefit all of the local businesses."
Reggie Fraley with Alpha Development created plans to develop a 45 unit apartment complex, 27 townhouses and seven single-family homes within the Northpointe neighborhood.
The purpose of Tuesday's meeting was to either approve or deny the application for establishing a TIF (Tax incredment Financing) housing district. Only the apartment complex would be funded through a TIF which would require 20 percent of the units (9 units) to be income-based affordable housing units.
Fraley provided information to the council that addressed many of the Northpointe homeowners concerns but despite his research the residents were not changing their stance.
The council ended up denying the request for the establishment of a TIF housing district in the Northpointe neighborhood.
Mayor Fran Ramler says the council made a fair decision.
"I wasn't in favor of it either, being 22-years a councilman, I've seen this come and go lots of times. At one time I had voted in favor of what I thought would be the city and it wasn't the right thing to do and the right thing to do is to do what people want. And it took me a while to understand that I want what the people want."
Mayor Ramler says Cold Spring does need affordable housing and the council will continue to work with Fraley on possibly deciding on an alternative location for the complex.
Ramler was appointment as major earlier this month after former major Bob Thelen resigned. Since Ramler was appointed mayor his council seat is now vacant. The city plans to appoint a new council member by November 15. Applications for the position are due by November 10.