“Type of people” comment re: MacIntosh/Chopmist hill development (Valley Breeze & Observer article, Oct. 28 edition.)

None of my fellow Chopmist Hill area residents have ever made this comment. The entire project is simply a developer’s money-making scheme from the initial get go: from the property being sold with a verbal agreement to an elderly woman to just build two houses (zoning is at 3 acres) then reneged to a multi-unit condo development under the state of R.I.’s ancient and flawed “affordable housing” mandate. Most of Scituate was once affordable – we bought here in late 2016 for well under what these condos will sell for – a two-bedroom condo for over $300K affordable? Yes, the housing “market” has changed – mostly wealthy people who came from other states seeking less expensive land and houses – not Rhode Islanders who make less than $50K and struggle to keep up. Granite counter tops and garages don’t equal “high end.” The only thing high end about housing should be everyone’s innate right to it. Fighting the increasingly unaffordable levels here in R.I. is like watching what happened in the Boston area the entire time I lived there ... a slow demise to condos and houses only the rich and their families could afford and soulless communities with more banks than locally owned businesses.

Scituate residents live here for space. For the rural environments. Everyone I have met here values the land and animals we live around. Under this affordable housing mandate, one can plop in any kind of development they want and pack them in to make more money, because “materials are more expensive now.” The state mandate doesn’t consider a town like Scituate that has over 30 percent of land held up (and growing all the time!) in Providence Water Supply land. How is that even possible? A 10 percent blanket on all cities, towns and suburbs in R.I.? Clearly this mandate needs some actual updating that includes an analysis on available lands and a town’s comprehensive plan. How much woodland/forest area has been lost since the early ‘90s? Look it up, it’s awful. And, there should be stipulations in place that do not allow developers to go back on their agreed to pricing. The housing market is volatile. Leaving it up to the “market” completely negates the point of RI Housing even getting involved in projects like these.

I went to the meetings on this project in 2018. Not one resident ever uttered such nonsense at these meetings when opposing the project as presented to the Planning Board. The opposition to the project had to do with well water issues, a serious issue for residents on Cooke Drive and Blueberry Lane – which sits behind the development. They also included density versus available space, location, traffic issues, and proximity to the watershed. No one ever talked about the potential buyers of these units.

I ask – why do you consistently interview the developers and not the residents affected by them? I don’t have enough words left to talk about the other issues. Maybe next time.

Annamarie Cimini

North Scituate

Editor’s note: The Breeze previously reached out to Cimini for comment and she said she did not want to speak for neighbors on the matter.

(1) comment

acim

Previously reached out to me??? When would that have been?

No one from the paper contacted me since Monday when I sent this in (except a call to alert me to this "editor note" at end). My response is that it's YOUR JOB to go talk to people in town about these issues- not mine. I'm not a reporter. I don't know what your comment means and why you put it here as it's simply untrue- except for the fact that of course I'm not going to speak for other people and put words in their mouth. I just know that the comment made by the previous development owner is not factual. I also tried to outline why the mandate is not addressing real housing inequities.

Why raise the LMI on a project where all the units are already sold AND to empty nesters? ...as the ex-owner had previously stated in this paper on yet another article about this.

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