Housing Dominates Talk At First Comprehensive Plan Meeting

Housing Dominates As

Planning Gets Underway

Seth Clark of Peter Clark Student Housing tells his colleagues on the City of Oneonta’s Comprehensive Plan Steering Committee how the loss of Center Street School resulted in the decline of that Center City residential neighborhood.   When he was growing up there, his family’s neighbors were primarily tenured professors at the college, he said.  Now, fellow committee member and Realtor Joan Fox pointed out, lower-paid adjuncts sometimes can’t qualify for mortgages.  That led to discussion of a range of housing issues, including faculty and executive recruits choosing not to accept college or hospital job offers because of the lack of housing, and professors choosing to commute from the Albany suburbs, New Hartford and Vestal, rather than moving here.  Amid this shortage, it was noted, there are 100 vacant houses in the city.  Listening are committee members Rachel Lutz Jessup of Destination Oneonta, the local manger of the Bank of Cooperstown; Bob Brzozowski, Greater Oneonta Historical Society executive director, and Fox. The committee had its first meeting Monday evening, led by Elan Planning’s Nicolette Wagoner and Susan Caruvana, who helped with Cooperstown’s Comprehensive Plan last year, and are also working with Richfield Springs and Schenevus.  They have already planned housing and parking studies as part of the comp plan’s development.  The city’s master plan update, which will take about a year, is paid for mostly by a state grant obtained by Otsego New CEO Sandy Mathes. (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)

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