A petition is circulating in Corrales urging Village officials to get behind a plan for a senior living complex at the corner of Corrales Road and Dixon Road, where Sunbelt Nursery is now. The petition can be found at the website for Village in the Village, referred to as “Age-Friendly Housing Initiative Petition.” A post at the ViV website includes the following to address frequently asked questions.
- “Why is age-friendly housing important to Corrales?
The American Association of Retired People (AARP) defines a livable community as one that is safe and secure, has affordable and appropriate housing and transportation options, and offers supportive community features and service. For Corrales, this should include a form of housing for seniors currently challenged to maintain their large homes and acreage. Age-friendly housing is much more compact and less expensive than single family homes. Neighbors are close by, and services can be shared.
- Key demographics show that Corrales is getting older, with almost 40 percent of the population over 60. Housing that allows independent, aging seniors to remain in Corrales is vital.
- Are casitas and age-friendly housing one and the same?
No, casitas represent a second property on an existing residential lot. Age-friendly housing provides long term, senior accessible rentals within the commercial zone/business district. It is a unique opportunity that should not affect the one residence per acre residential ordinance.
- Where would this housing be built and why is this space ideal?
The plan under consideration is for a 10-townhouse (five duplexes) development on the corner of Dixon and Corrales Road, the current site of Sunbelt Landscaping.
The townhouses will be in the commercial section of Corrales where zoning allows for increased construction density for restaurants, offices and shops all of which could be more square footage than our senior housing project. The site is also walkable to our many amenities —restaurants, shops, pharmacy, churches, the bosque, etc.
Traffic flow should not be impacted since access in and out is from Dixon Road. Additionally, long term residents on this property should represent less traffic impact than variable retail flow from a retail space.
- What will the housing be like?
Each individual two-dwelling duplex will have two bedrooms, two bathrooms and a one-car garage separating units for sound reduction. Each townhome will be 1,300 square feet and rented separately. All will be wheelchair accessible. The property will be attractively landscaped to enhance our Scenic By-way. Landscaping will support water preservation goals and easy maintenance and will be the responsibility of the landlord.
- What about concerns regarding sewer and water usage?
Because the project is in the commercial zone it will connect to the Village waste control system. In addition, this project features state of the art, innovative methods for sewage processing and gray water recycling of 50 percent of the total water usage.
- Doesn’t this open the door for yet more large scale development in Corrales?
No, the bar set by this project is high and the options within the commercial zone are limited by space and financing.
- What assurance is there that seniors will occupy these properties?
The developer, Frank Steiner, is committed to renting to seniors first and will only rent to others if no seniors apply.
- Why is VIV in support of this petition?
Village in the Village supports efforts to help seniors stay in the Village as they age and creating a livable community is an important component of this goal. Many other communities across the United States are addressing the needs of a livable community with some form of age-friendly housing. This project is not funded or financially supported by ViV, but due to its alignment with ViV’s mission, ViV acknowledges the merits and intent.