McLaughlin to build apartments at the Village Green

Barney McLaughlin announced last week that he would be constructing the apartment building facing the square in the Chester Village Green in Chester. McLaughlin said he would be the contractor reconstructing the demolished building, not George Emerson, who gave up his option some months ago.

McLaughlin’s new project will include 36 one-bedroom apartments and one two-bedroom apartment.

The first floor of the new building will contain space for what McLaughlin hopes will be a combination deli and grocery. The other units on the first floor will be amenities for the apartments, such as a large fitness room, an office for the rental group and large storage areas for each of the units.

“We are building it so at least the two end units would be appropriate for a deli/grocery type operation,” McLaughlin said.

The first floor will look as if it is retail space, which fits the concept of the Village. Residents of the development told the Village News that they are glad the vacant area will be rebuilt.

In addition to the apartments, McLaughlin will build as promised to the county in his zoning case, at least 40 parking spaces west of the building behind the Chester library. Parking was one of the concerns of the development’s residents.

The in-kind contribution made to the county said Carrie Coyner, attorney for McLaughlin, covers infrastructure cost typically proffered on cases like these.

“We wanted to make sure that the community got what it wanted, and that was to add to the infrastructure that was already there,” said Coyner. “We believe these conditions will provide for a high quality product that will finish out this area so we will have a completed product except for the arts center.”

Ms. Coyner said, since the apartment building will be 36 single bedroom, at a minimum the school proffer should not be required. The schools portion of the proffer is what has been holding up the case for almost a year. The planning staff advised that a maximum proffer of $18,966 per unit would defray the cost of the capital facilities necessitated by this proposed development.

McLaughlin will allocate $201,600 for parking and $7,140 per unit for transportation to be used in this area. The developer has also proffered quality standards to increase the durability and sustainability of the housing product.  

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