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Letter to the Editor: Reject Sherwood Meadows project


I would like to express my gratitude to the Hamburg Sun for providing this format for the residents of Hamburg to express their views.

I would also thank all the residents who have expressed their support for us, in word and deed, involving the Sherwood Meadows apartment complex.

This situation is still ongoing and will, in time, affect more neighborhoods than just ours, of that you can be sure.

The difference between houses, townhouses and apartments involves population density, use of services and taxes collected.

If the Sherwood Meadows townhouses had been built and sold, there would be 56 properties paying taxes. As only four townhouses were built and they are being rented, my calculations are based upon the remaining 52 properties and the 128 proposed apartment units.

Using equal numbers per family for the townhouses and the apartment complex, the townhouse development could have had 52 families, or 104 adults, using services, with one child per household, or 52 children in the school system.

The apartment complex could have had 128 families, or 256 adults using services, with one child per household, or 128 children in the school system, as you can see a big difference in population density and use of services.

My understanding is that the townhouses were listed as $200,000 base price. The full market value for these townhouses would equal 52 times $200,000, or $10,400,000.

As you all know, a percentage of the full market value would be used for the tax base.

Is the owner of the Sherwood Meadows Apartments going to pay the same amount of taxes as would have been collected if the residential townhouses had been built?

I believe the market value of the apartment complex will be less than the market value of the townhouses that could have been built.

If the cost for building the townhouses was less, the developer would have built the townhouses and rented them.

Remember, the four townhouses that already have been built are being rented.

What taxes would have been collected if 128 families had the opportunity to buy homes? The rent stated by the developer at a planning board meeting was $800 – $1,200 per unit, per month.

I did a quick check and counted 15 apartment complexes listed in the phone book.

With the Sherwood Meadows Apartments, and the apartments being built on Southwestern Boulevard next to the department of transportation facility, that will make 17.

The fact is that apartment complexes have a higher population density with a lower tax revenue.

If there is a lower tax revenue, who is going to have to make that revenue up?

If this keeps up, the slogan on the Hamburg website will have to be changed from the “town that friendship built” to the “town that apartments built.”

What kind of town that will be, still has to be seen.

Green space that could be used for homes is being brought up for apartments. I believe Hamburg is heading in the wrong direction.

Lawrence Backlas

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2013-11-11 | 15:21:11
Other factors to consider
I agree with your sentiment, you however did not address the concern that all though the developed says that he is going to construct up scale apartments once he gets his approval there is nothing stopping him firm building low rent subsidized apartments there by lowering housing valued in the neighborhood. This developer can not be trusted and this project must be stopped.
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