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Carolyn FortinoOct 26, 2017, 6:47 pm

Westchester to turn long-closed homeless shelter into affordable housing for seniors

Officials are signing a $1.5M agreement to transform the 180-year-old shelters

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VALHALLA — Officials have announced a $1.5 million agreement that will turn a long-closed homeless shelter into affordable housing for seniors in Valhalla.

The gates have been locked at the Westhelp Homeless Shelter on the grounds of Westchester Community College for years. But County Executive Rob Astorino said on Thursday that Westchester is signing a 65-year lease to convert the six-acre property into 54 units of affordable housing for senior citizens.

"Seniors are put in an untenable situation all too often. Where they grow up in this county and raise their families here in this county, and they'd like to have their retirement in this county. But we know that the cost of living is just too expensive," Astorino said.

180-year-old shelter units will be rehabilitated and converted into 26 two-bedroom units and 28 one-bedroom units.

To qualify, seniors interested in the units must be 62-years-old or older. 60 percent of the units will be reserved for seniors with incomes below 60 percent of the area median income, 20 percent of the units will be for incomes below 50 percent of the median income and the remainder for seniors below 90 percent of the area median income.

"A technology center and on-site management office, exercise rooms, a community room with kitchen and laundry room,” Marathon Development Group President Mark Soja said, listing all of the amenities included in the apartment plan. “We are really trying to create a location where our citizens can age in place while having the benefit of having a community around them."

More information on housing opportunities can be found on the county's home seeker website.

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