LAKE PLACID — Eight residential units being built in a Lake Placid housing development next year will be reserved for current or potential employees of the Lake Placid Central School District and hospitals operated by Adirondack Health.
The Fawn Valley development on Wesvalley Road will comprise a total of 22 units upon completion – six two-bedroom Cape Cod-style single-family homes and 16 two-bedroom townhouses, located in four buildings. Homestead Development Corporation, the nonprofit developer behind Fawn Valley, has decided to reserve eight of these townhomes for people who work in the local school district and hospitals — four units for LPCSD employees and four units for employees at the two Adirondack Health-operated hospitals in Lake Placid and Saranac Lake, according to HDC President Steve Sama.
Fawn Valley is being built with full-time Lake Placid residents and essential workers in mind. And while development is not taken into account “payable” For the local population who have the greatest need for housing, in accordance with the standards set in a 2020 Housing Needs Analysis for Lake Placid and North Elba, the Fawn Valley units are being sold at cost and are deed restricted to always remain owner and never be occupied Used as short term holiday rental. Fawn Valley single family homes are estimated to cost about $220,000 and townhouses cost about $180,000 per unit.
LPCSD Superintendent Timothy Seymour sits on the HDC board, and he said HDC’s mission to provide housing for local, essential workers aligns with the school district’s mission. He said many district programs, like the new Community Schools program, are driven by a mission to foster sustainable communities.
“Having a reliable source of housing that supports this ideal is an integral part of the progress we are all trying to achieve together,” said Seymour.
This summer, Seymour said, there were quite a few “viable” Applicants seeking work in the district who ultimately chose not to proceed with their application process due to the lack of local housing.
“It’s a very real and ongoing problem,” he said.
Seymour hopes the Fawn Valley units targeted for LPCSD will provide more opportunities for potential employees as the district moves toward its hiring process next year. The apartment could either go to current employees in the district or to potential employees.
Fawn Valley’s six modular homes will be assembled this fall – Sama was in the process of assembling the third home on Wednesday – and Sama said the first row homes are expected to be available by August 2023, in time for the 2023-24 school year. Sama said HDC has already generated a lot of interest in the townhomes — 35 applications have been received, many of them from LPCSD and Adirondack Health employees.
Fawn Valley does more for LPCSD than providing housing for district workers. Seymour said the development also provides jobs for Lake Placid students participating in the BOCES Building Trades program. According to Seymour, HDC needed some help assembling its modular homes, and the district has arranged for its students to work in the Building Trades program in Fawn Valley and be paid to assemble the homes that some LPCSD employees will eventually live in.
“It’s an immersive educational experience,” he said. “It’s pretty ideal.”
Sama said while HDC is talking about the prospect of future housing projects, the talk is on “only intention at this point.” However, he said some people have expressed interest in helping HDC secure land for other projects.
“There’s definitely a buzz and there’s definitely a need.” he said.