A Master Plan “Community Conversation” Question Seven: “Transit-oriented” housing and retail?

Monday, March 10, 2014
by Rob Greenstein

We continue our Community Conversation with another question, this one on housing.

Would you like to see a mixed-use residential and commercial area near our train station in downtown Chappaqua, (that is, “transit-oriented” development)?

Feel free to comment here. It helps us for you to use your real name. We have an intern compiling comments and they will count for more, for master plan survey purposes, if you sign them. We will also be posting the same question on our Town of New Castle Facebook page, and the Town’s web site.

Residents are also encouraged to attend our town board meetings and give their ideas.

If you can’t attend our meetings, you can email your questions to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


During the meeting, you can ask questions via a chat function on the live stream on New Castle Community Media Center (NCCMC)’s site via Livestream. Residents can just click on the Town Board meeting pane to view and chat. This will help the town board gather information from residents who can’t attend the meetings in person.  We also intend to reach out also through mailings, for residents who do not use internet or cannot attend our meetings.


You can revisit our first question by clicking: “What type of services, events, shopping, etc. would you like to see in downtown Chappaqua or Millwood in the evenings/night-time?”

Our second question by clicking: “Should development in downtown Chappaqua or Millwood include housing mixed in with commercial uses?”

Our third question by clicking: “Should the town use some of the train station parking lot for other uses (such as a transit oriented development consisting of housing and commercial development) with an offset for the loss of any parking addressed through the construction a parking structure?”

Our fourth question by clicking: Would you like to see more recreation facilities in the Town? Indoor and/or Outdoor? Public or Private?

Our fifth question by clicking: Is more open space for “passive recreation”—hiking, walking, dog-walking, sitting and relaxing—needed throughout the Town?

And our sixth question by clicking: If commercial development at Chappaqua Crossing is anchored by a grocery store, what other uses would you want to see there?


We encourage civil, civic discourse. All comments are reviewed before publication to assure that this standard is met.

Mr Greenstein – this outreach asking the community for feedback about a “mixed use residential and commercial area near our train station” is a good exercise. HOWEVER, in your draft presented at last board meeting you have ALREADY stated as your GOAL that the Town Hall and Police Station should be relocated to Chapp Crossing and in its place redevelopment should take place. Shouldn’t you have FIRST asked for community input BEFORE stating this as a goal?

What residential do you envision for the train station area?

The train station is already overflowing. Traffic downtown, especially when rush our trains disembark is a nightmare. Bell Middle school drop off and pick up times are also a traffic nightmare. In this tight area we already have our Library, a bustling middle school, and an overcrowded train station parking lot. Youth sports on downtown fields , mens softball on Rec field, and evening events at Bell contribute to more congestion. Now you want to add additional commercial and residential to this already crowded area? What studies- what surveys have you done?

This has Brodsky- Napoli mentality written all over it.

Unfortunately, this is another example of you shooting first and asking questions later.

By Resident on 03/10/2014 at 9:13 am

The devils in the details – the question is far to broad.  Ideally yes….but…..

By Chris Roberta on 03/10/2014 at 10:07 am

Let’s not beat around the bush here with “questions”.  Greenstein wants to turn Chappaqua upside down and develop downtown.  Everything that happens from here is our reaction to it, including the “master plan” process.

By smoke and mirrors on 03/10/2014 at 12:32 pm

don’t mess with the train station parking lot.  Commuting is hard enough already.

By by another resident on 03/10/2014 at 1:54 pm

Agree with Resident, smoke and mirrors, and another resident.

NO!!!  We don’t want YOUR development that you have been hawking and shoving down our throats.  Stop it! 

By When will you get it? on 03/10/2014 at 4:46 pm

Everyone should have thought more carefully before the election.

By Another one on 03/10/2014 at 6:56 pm

No -,I do not want to see a mixed use residential commercial area near our train station. It is already too crowded and too congested in that area. You have already made it clear that is what you and Brodsky want and lets not forget about Napoli.
You want to put a super market where our current town hall sits and you want residential ( prob affordable housing) behind that.
The traffic is already horrible, the train station parking lot already full. Bell Middle School is right there as is the library. Now what ? A super market? Not there! Imagine those big 18 wheel trucks making deliveries to the supermarket.
Build Whole Foods at CC. That’s where it fits that where it belongs.

By Chapp mom on 03/10/2014 at 7:56 pm

No – this is a BAD idea! I have one child at Bell School and 2 younger children that will attend Bell over the next several years. Safety is an issue. Bringing retail , more commerce, means bringing more cars more traffic. Bell school is bustling with activities, middle school students often walk into town in herds. The fields are in use and Rec Field is also used for Rec football , Soccer , and baseball/softball. My husband commuts to NYC and I often pick him up at the train station. It can take 10. -15 minutes to exit the train station when a full rush hour peak train arrives and all cars exit together.
Improve downtown parking and improve the mix of stores ( too many nail spas and real estate brokers/ banks) and leave our lovely and quaint town alone. Adding a supermarket at the current site of the town hall is a terrible idea.
I hope you are listening. I hope you haven’t already made up your mind and this isn’t just some stunt to placate residents, having them think you are interested in feedback.
I am terribly disappointed with the performance of our new town board members so far. I am regretting that I voted for them.

By Another mom on 03/11/2014 at 7:48 am

Chapp mom,

Not at CC TOO MUCH TRAFFIC ,!!  Much better in the already existing retail district.

By No to a on 03/11/2014 at 8:33 am


By J. Lyman Stone on 03/11/2014 at 9:05 am

I agree with all the above comments.  Whilst I have concerns for the potential traffic problems that any development in this area would bring, I worry more about the process here. What is driving the need to develop here? An outpouring of community need and support? We have trouble filling the emptied retail spaces downtown as it is. I don’t remember hearing about these plans in any detail the run up to the election.  Surely a traffic survey and a full impact and needs assessment should be the first step. Have you been downtown at 3pm on a Friday when the school lets out? I feel we are being asked to comment on snapshots of a plan that is being pushed through.  And we need to stop talking about Whole Foods until they actually agree to come.

By Sarah W on 03/11/2014 at 8:12 pm

Horrible idea. Already too much traffic- train station parking lot overflowing ~ library and middle school proximity problematic.

By Steve on 03/12/2014 at 8:17 am

No. Quality of life and traffic and parking issues are too great. The layout of our village does not allow for a Westport or Scarsdale like town centre and we certainly don’t need something that looks like Ardsley town center which is a horrible place to visit by car. It is difficult enough to find quality businesses to rent the retail spaces we already have. Whole foods at Chappaqua Crossing is a much better idea.

By Athena K on 03/12/2014 at 9:09 am

Of course it’s a NO! Horrible idea!
People we are wasting our time. The fix is in. Greenstein and Brodksy have their agenda in place and the wheels are turning. This letter from Rob Greenstein in which he asks for feedback from the community is a charade simply meant to make people think he is listening. He/ they are not.
And where is. Lisa Katz in all this? She does nothing and says nothing at the town. Board meetings. As predicted, all she wants is for retail at CC to go away and in return she has pledged her loyalty and vote to Greenstein/ Brodsky.
I am not sure if what they are doing is illegal, but it certainly is dishonest and unethical.

By Ronnie on 03/12/2014 at 10:34 am

I have big concerns with the traffic tied to any project (such as Chappaqua Crossing) but it is obvious that the town is having a difficult time adjusting to divided government.  Obviously a group (not all) of ghost posters who are doing whatever they can to throw TNC under the bus.  Where were these people a year ago when Carpenter was running (ruining) the town? When I see real plans that I can comment on, I will do so.  I’ll leave the partisan pot shots to the rest of you until then.

By DC on the Hudson on 03/12/2014 at 7:26 pm

To DC- your comments confuse me. You seem offended by ” ghost posters” yet you do not identify yourself. Thus making you a ghost poster as well. You ask a good question- ” where were these people a year ago when Carpenter was running( ruining) the town?” 
The answer to that is we voted for change. We bought the Team New Castle campaign promises of ” end of status quo”, TRANSPARENCY , ” a new approach to communicating”, no hidden agendas and no behind the scenes deals and negotiations. These were all the things the old town board and Carpenter allegedly did- or were accused of doing by Greenstein Katz and Brodsky. Now they are in office 3 months and decisions have been made, goals set, committees hand picked, and THEIR agendas have been set in motion.  This letter by Greenstein and subsequent comments are about the decision/ goal to move town hall and replace it with retail( super market) and residential ( affordable housing). Who decided this? What surveys what studies were done? When carpenter and the old board made these kind of decisions regarding retail at CC , Team New Castle destroyed and ridiculed them with insults and taunts. Now they ar doing the very same thing in their dealings with The Spa, Town Hall, Carla and the train station restaurant. We voted for change and a new approach. We got duped. We got worse.

By Resident on 03/13/2014 at 7:24 am


The new board members need no help, they are besmirching themselves.  Have you heard them ?

By @ DC on 03/13/2014 at 10:50 am

To Resident (if you are one)

What binding decision has been made?  What permit has been granted?  Take the Spa.  All I know about the Spa is that it is a big piece of property that is in active sale mode and which something will be done with and today pays no taxes. I never see any traffic on 128 and comparing that to Roaring Brook Road as a main town artery seems silly.  I saw a piece where Greenstein basically told them that they have a big hill to climb and that he was doubtful that the septic will pass muster.  Whatever comes out of their process, the town will at least know what can be done with the piece of land. Now if they jam it through against the will of the town, throw the bums out.  Until then it is all talk.

I even get live streaming of all public meetings now so no one can give me the BS excuse of “we discussed that during the work session” anymore.  Used to get that excuse all the time.  I guess campaign season has already started.

By DC on the Hudson on 03/13/2014 at 12:43 pm


There are already many existing studies on that “spa” site.  There is no reason for anymore studies.
Greenstein and Brodsky want that resort /development, that is why they are going ahead with the process.
Glad you are watching meetings.  I learned the above from watching them too.  Guess you must have missed those conversations.

By @ DC on 03/13/2014 at 1:40 pm


There already exists many studies on the Tripp St. property.  Greenstein and the other board members have said, in a televised meeting, that they have not read them.  The only reason that Greenstein is moving the process ahead is because he wants that resort development.
He has as much as said so.

You have an opinion on the roads and on the economics of the site.  Your opinion is not an informed one.  Maybe learn more before you call concerns “silly.”

There is much that needs attention in the town yet once again the board is spending endless time with ill advised projects.  If you are in fact watching the meetings, as you suggest that you are then I suggest that you need to pay more attention to what you are hearing/ seeing.

By @ DC on 03/13/2014 at 3:06 pm

Resident, to back up your point watch the joint school board/town board meeting.  Greenstein stated he is talking to the Chappaqua Crossing people all the time, “even today” he said.  Transparency—really?  Does anyone know what they are talking about?  Lisa Katz who ran on no development at CC, which is why I voted for her, told the school board at that meeting, basically, that we want to make sure you are comfortable with what will be developed there…really Lisa…Brodsky was not at the mtg

By so much for Team New Castle on 03/14/2014 at 10:01 am

Survey the community like you said you were going to do.  You will learn a lot.  Including that the majority do not want traffic lights!

By Ellen on 03/15/2014 at 8:51 am


Yes, let us survey the community.  I think that you will find that the majority of the residents now would like to have traffic lights.  I was against them but now I want them.  The survey will disclose the actual truth.

By on traffic lights on 03/15/2014 at 11:53 am

On Traffic Lights, that’s why the surveys we were promised are so important.

By Ellen on 03/15/2014 at 10:15 pm

Glad to see that I’m not alone in my concern for the safety of my kids waliking in an even more developed downtown area.  Developing the town hall property as more retail and housing just seems like a bad idea to me.

I agree with Sarah W., Another mom, Chapp mom, Steve, Athena K., another resident, smoke and mirrors, Resident, and When will you get it.- Wow! A lot of us seem opposed to additional development in downtown-Are you listening, Board?

By Yet another mom on 04/02/2014 at 1:51 pm

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