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FASNY in White Plains: Business Council of Westchester Voices Support

FASNY is proposing to open a school and a 78-acre nature conservancy on the former Ridgeway Country Club.

Patch file photo.
Patch file photo.
The following is a press release from the Business Council of Westchester in support of the French American School of New York's White Plains development project.

There are opponents to the school's plans, some of whom have filed a lawsuit to stop the effort. This press release does not reflect the opinions of the opposition:

WHITE PLAINS, NY (July 8, 2014) – In another strong showing for the French American School of New York (FASNY), The Business Council of Westchester last night reiterated its support for the School’s efforts to transform the defunct Ridgeway Country Club in White Plains.

 

Speaking before White Plains Mayor Thomas Roach, members of the Common Council and hundreds of people on Monday night, Business Council Executive Vice President and COO John Ravitz said the project is an example of smart development as it would create jobs and stimulate the economy while balancing the needs of the community.

 

In his remarks, which were also submitted to the Council, Ravitz noted that building the new FASNY campus would generate $36.3 million in economic activity for Westchester County – including $14.3 million for White Plains businesses – and would generate $1.1 million annually in tax revenues, according to recent reports. The project would also create 530 new construction jobs and another 317 jobs in support industries and businesses, which are in addition to the 232 full-time and part-time positions at the School.

 

“As we did in 2012 and 2013, the BCW continues to support the project because we believe it will help create strong economic development for both the City of White Plains and Westchester County,” Ravitz said. “The BCW is committed to supporting economic development projects in Westchester County that will bring both jobs and revenue to the municipalities, which is why the BCW one again urges the City of White Plain’s Common Council to support and approve the FASNY application.”

 

Ravitz also highlighted specific improvements that have been made to the plan, which include shifting the primary property access from Ridgeway to North Street; reducing the number of students from 1,200 to 950; implementing a stand-alone traffic management plan and installing adaptive traffic signal controllers and creating greater buffer zones around the school campus.

 

“The BCW also appreciates that fact that throughout this process, FASNY has done a great deal of work to address many of the legitimate quality of life issues that have been raised by the surrounding community,” Ravitz said.


FASNY is proposing to open a school and a 78-acre nature conservancy on the former Ridgeway Country Club. The White Plains Common Council recently voted unanimously to refer FASNY’s Site Plan and Special Permit Applications to various City agencies for review. The first of three additional public hearings was held on July 7 and two others are scheduled for August and September.

 

About The Business Council of Westchester

The county’s largest and most influential business membership organization, The Business Council of Westchester is committed to helping businesses market, learn, advocate and grow. In addition, The Business Council of Westchester is actively involved in reviewing federal, state and county legislation and regulations in order to assess the potential impact on the business community and to influence the outcomes through advocacy when the business community’s interests may be affected. It also acts as an information resource for the business community and government leaders at all levels.

Kevin Wright July 09, 2014 at 07:38 AM
Appears that the tide is going out on the anti-FASNY hysteria.
BlueWP July 09, 2014 at 11:21 AM
Are you an economist Kevin? Didn't think so. The neighborhood has proven that these numbers just don't add up. But hey, keep fighting for the 1%ers who attend the school. That trickle down promised by Reagan is just them peeing all over you.
AMC July 09, 2014 at 02:54 PM
BCW has not done the extensive analysis needed to make this reflex pro-FASNY decision. A Ph.D economist carefully analyzed FASNY's economic benefits section of the DEIS. Big surprise! Using FASNY's questionable assumptions and numbers, it turned out that having FASNY in WP would cost every tax-paying WP resident $1,700!!! FASNY stopped talking about 'economic benefits' of the development after that. However, maybe in desperation, they are going back to that well. Shame on the BCW. At the recent, 7/1/14, public hearings, many of the pro-FASNY speakers failed to reveal important details such as the fact that they had a relative working at the school. Everyone who supports FASNY has an agenda. The Thompson PR machine infiltrates every dark place in Westchester. Didn't you see 'House of Cards' Kevin?
AMC July 09, 2014 at 03:29 PM
Shame on the BCW for reflexively supporting the FASNY development in WP w/o doing their homework. A Ph.D economist did a careful analysis of FASNY's 'economic benefits' assumptions and numbers for the DEIS (draft environmental impact statement) which was shocking. Turns out that FASNY in WP would cost every tax-paying resident of WP $1,700/ year!!! FASNY stopped talking about economic benefits so it's surprising that they go back to that well. Maybe they are desperate. They certainly have turned up their slick Thompson PR machine with expensive glossy 'informational' mailings to city residents. FASNY's narrative has consistently been a moving target from the very beginning. 'We are an international private school...no we are a 'conservancy' for the people of WP'. The reality is that they bought a choice Westchester piece of property during the recession for a bargain-basement price w/o doing the necessary due diligence. The property is wet and houses a complicated fragile ecosystem complete with underground streams which have not been adequately studied. The riparian repercussions for the town of Mamaroneck are real. Water flows downhill. If you 'pave over paradise' and put up parking lots and a 230,863 square foot school over streams and wetlands there will be unintended consequences.
worriedinwp July 18, 2014 at 07:15 AM
please do not ignore the connection here: Liz Bracken, wife of Geoff Thompson (FASNY PR machine) is secretary of the WBC. PLEEEEEEEEEEEESE!!!

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