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March 2017

Left to right: Attorney David Steinmetz, Zarin and Steinmetz; Andrew Teeters, Vice President, Shelter Development LLC; Architect Erik Anderson.

Contention over Special Use Permit for Brightview Senior Living Continues

By Stephen E. Lipken


David Steinmetz, Zarin and Steinmetz LLC appeared at the Thursday, February 16 Harrison Board of Trustees meeting along with Andrew Teeters, Shelter Development Vice President; architect Erik Anderson and Anthony P. Nester, Associate Principal, John Meyer Consulting,  requesting a Special Exception Use Permit for Brightview Senior Living, 600 Lake Street, West Harrison.


“The Planning Board agonized, presenting a negative declaration under State Environmental Quality Review Assessment (SEQRA), making sure the applicant addressed noise, odor, height, visual and stormwater,” Steinmetz stated.


Anderson noted that 80% of the roof is asphalt residential shingles, sloped to hide mechanical equipment from neighbors and cut compressor noise to 41 decibels during the day; 39 at night.


There will be 160 units, 80 Assisted Living; 80 Independent Living, with 25 Memory Care (Alzheimer’s) dwellings within Assisted Care.  The homes will be 15-38 feet lower than the nearby cliff.


Numerous objections were punctuated by raucous applause after each speaker.  Retired Harrison Fire Marshall and former Chief Steven Surace expressed deep concern that since the building will occupy most of the property, fire lanes would not surround the entire structure and to accommodate a ladder truck, the road should be 26 feet wide; the road width is 20 feet.


Glenn Daher intimated that the homes were too large for the area and few could afford the $5000-$10,000 units, “since the Harrison median income is $63,000.”

West Harrison resident Sam Hoisington stressed that a Full Environmental Impact Statement was not done by the Planning Board and if the Assisted Living market became glutted,  “What would happen to the Assisted Living facility?...  What would we do with that massive building in our residential area…?”


“What evidence is there that the 160-unit structure affects property values,” Joseph Russo inquired.  “This level of urbanization is obscenely obsessive.  I would like to remind the Board that you work for the citizens of Harrison, not the corporation.”


The Board voted to continue the Public Hearing into the Thursday, March 2 meeting.

The Trustees did approve the construction of a 19-unit apartment on 241-247 Halstead Avenue with 3,000 square feet retail space on the ground floor, requested by attorney Seth Mandelbaum,  McCullough, Goldberger and Staudt.  The structure also features a gym, bicycle storage and “green” roof with plantings.