Supervisor Kate Murray and senior neighbors gave a warm welcome to nine new homeowners as they moved into Foster Meadow Golden Age Residence, a 30-unit senior living complex. Joining the Supervisor were Councilmen Edward Ambrosino and James Darcy. The project was designed to help fulfill the need for more affordable living opportunities for the town's growing senior population, and it represents a significant step in the overall revitalization of Elmont. Also at the press conference were Town Clerk Mark Bonilla, Receiver of Taxes Don Clavin, Nassau County Legislator John Ciotti, the project developer James Villardi, Peter Elkowitz of the Long Island Housing Partnership and senior neighbors of the new residents who were visiting from the nearby Elmont Senior Center.
"We are thrilled to welcome deserving senior residents with the opportunity to make Foster Meadow their home and to truly enjoy their golden years in a very special and affordable place," said Supervisor Kate Murray.
The senior housing development is the result of a public/private sector partnership between the Town of Hempstead, Bedford Construction Group and the Long Island Housing Partnership. The property was acquired by the town from Nassau County and the town's planning department worked with Bedford to complete construction. Hempstead conveyed the property to Bedford for one dollar, facilitating the development of truly affordable co-op homes.
"We are constantly working to offer more affordable and amenity-rich housing for our seniors," stated Councilman James Darcy. "This senior facility is setting a new standard for other municipalities to follow," added Councilman Ambrosino. "Each unit in this complex comes with stainless steel Energy Star appliances, laundry closet with washer and dryer, granite countertops, hardwood floors, outdoor deck and much more," Murray continued.
Senior citizens who will now call Foster Meadow home have purchased units at below market prices. Each unit is priced at $175,000, but actually cost approximately $150,000, thanks to $25,000 grants to each purchaser. The $25,000 grant is comprised of $10,000 in federal "pass-through" funds from the town and $15,000 in state funds through the Long Island Housing Partnership. The effective property taxes for each unit are a modest $120 per month. The monthly co-op maintenance payment is between $530 and $580.
The Foster Meadow Golden Age Residence, located at 1888 Foster Meadow Drive, is just off Elmont Road and behind the soon-to-be redeveloped Argo Movie Theatre property. The residence is conveniently located next to a senior center, where residents can participate in social, cultural and recreational programs. The facility is also in close proximity to transportation and shopping, including a soon-to-be constructed supermarket.
Senior citizens had to meet the affordable housing eligibility requirements. To be eligible for a unit the applicants must be 62 years of age or older. Senior couples can have a combined family income of $65,150 or less.
"I am pleased that Nassau County was able to provide the town with federal 'pass-through' funds, which are being used to reduce the purchase of the units for new homebuyers," stated Nassau County Legislator John Ciotti.
"The Town of Hempstead recognizes the need for affordable housing for seniors," said Ambrosino. "The Foster Meadow Golden Age Residence will enable seniors to stay in Elmont, a community that many have called home for decades," added Darcy.
"Seniors are a vital part of the fabric of our communities and we owe it to them to assist in creating affordable places in which to live. Projects like this and others throughout the town help strengthen neighborhoods and give back to those who have contributed so much," said Murray.
To bring this project to fruition the Town of Hempstead partnered with the Long Island Housing Partnership and Bedford Construction Group, a respected developer. The facility and each unit have been transformed into a beautiful residence for seniors. The facility has efficient heating and enhanced fire protection systems and a wide lobby area with lounge welcomes residents and visitors. The spacious recreation room is the heart of Foster Meadow senior activities; it's the perfect space for residents to meet one another and take part in programs. However, if they prefer, homeowners can relax in the quiet lounge or get some fresh air on the spacious patio.
Foster Meadow's 30 residential living units are each 955 square feet with individual unit climate control made possible by a state-of-the-art heating and air recycling system, so energy-efficient that it is expected to save 50% compared to originally proposed systems. The units have smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, sprinklers, a closed-circuit TV system and all are cable/high speed Internet ready. Each unit has a deck, two bedrooms and one and a half bathrooms, and is fitted with support railings, built in night-lights and other features for the safety of those who are physically challenged. Large closets, including a full laundry closet, plus hardwood floors, granite countertops and the use of ceramic tile, make each Foster Meadow unit complete and comfortable for senior resident owners.
"The golden years are a time when seniors should have the opportunity to enjoy life and the fruits of their labors while residing in a beautiful place," concluded Supervisor Murray. "We are thrilled to say, 'Welcome Home!'"