To the editor:
The YMCA is planning to build 53 low-income units at its Middle Street site with Harborlight Community Partners. LDS Consultant Group determined Dolben’s 200-unit apartment project at Fuller does not meet a financial hardship standard to justify in-lieu payment to waive the required 30 affordable units under the city’s inclusionary housing ordinance.
The development group is willing to provide 30 affordable units as per the ordinance. Adding 83 low-income and affordable units is better for the city of Gloucester than adding 53 low-income units. This is not an either/or scenario — the YMCA already plans on building 53 low-income units at Middle Street.
The question is whether Dolben will provide 30 affordable units at Fuller as required by the inclusionary housing ordinance.
The answer is easy — please decline the $500,000 in-lieu payment offer and proceed with the original offer inclusive of 30 affordable units.
The city needs affordable units and the inclusionary ordinance requires 15 percent affordable units in the 200-unit housing project.
The LDS Consultant Group determined no financial hardship.
The development group is willing to provide the required 30 affordable units.
Waiving Dolben’s obligation to provide 30 affordable units as required by city ordinance with an unjustified in-lieu payment of $500,000 with no financial hardship determination is not in the best interests of the city.