Westampton affordable housing project back for discussion | Local News

WESTAMPTON — An affordable housing project approved in 2014 will be back on the table.

The Township Committee will hold a special meeting Wednesday at 6 p.m. to consider giving the developer of The Willows at Westampton a second extension to complete the closing on the Woodlane Road property due to issues related to adding it to the sewer service area.

In December, the municipality approved a similar measure and moved the closing date to May 31. The new extension would be June 20.

Mayor C. Andre Daniels said he realizes questions have been raised about The Willows, including the number of students the complex will bring into the school district, but he considers it a “value-added project” that helps the municipality fulfill its affordable housing obligation, which as of May 2016 was 649 units.

“I think The Willows will be a quality-constructed project,” Daniels said, and he was especially pleased that since the complex will be rentals, the municipality will earn 144 affordable housing credits instead of just 72.

Ingerman Development of Cherry Hill plans to build one-, two- and three-bedroom low- and moderate-income apartments in six three-story buildings. Rents would range from $300 to $1,200 a month.

A big sticking point for at least one official is that the complex is across from Freedom Village, a 72-unit affordable housing complex for residents with disabilities.

Deputy Mayor Abraham Lopez, who was not on the committee when the redevelopment agreement was approved, has a concerns with the project, including the clustering of affordable units in one area and the amount of money the developer has agreed to pay the township in lieu of taxes.

“Aside from lumping affordable housing units together in one development, affordable housing should be indistinguishable, at least externally speaking, from regular units,”…

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