Affordable housing hearing set in Ledyard

The Ledyard Zoning Commission will hold a public hearing at 7:30 p.m. Thursday in the Town Hall Annex to continue the discussion of converting Stonegate Village on Flintlock Road to an affordable housing development.

Stonegate Village owner Third Garden Park LP first proposed to the commission in March that they convert Stonegate Village into affordable housing and do away with the 55-plus age restriction. After residents of the community responded angrily, the commission voted unanimously in May in favor of the affordable housing conversion, but kept in place the age restriction.

Third Garden Park has since submitted an amended application, which proposes to create two parks from the 80-site park, according to commission Chairman Eric Treaster. One would be a 58-site community that continues to be age-restricted; the other would consist of the remaining 22 units without an age restriction.

Thursday's hearing will be a continuation of the July 12 public hearing on the amended application.

Stonegate Village resident Lawrence Helfrich said he and his fellow residents will continue to argue against even partially lifting the age restriction because there would be no physical separation of the two proposed communities.

"It's a common entry. You can't say, you can't go in the streets," he said.

"We have some pretty sound arguments," he added. "We're going to give it a good try."

Treaster said the commission has until Aug. 9 to make a decision regarding the amended application. If they do not meet this deadline, then they must schedule a special meeting to decide.

"Affordable housing" is a term applying to homes that are sold or rented to a buyer whose income is less than or equal to 60 percent or 80 percent of the local or statewide median income, whichever is less. Treaster said the town is required by the state to approve affordable housing applications as long as it does not currently meet the 10 percent minimum stock of affordable housing. Only demonstrated risks to public safety would prevent the commission from approving such applications.

a.isaacs@theday.com

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