White Pine Commons rents majority of units, some still available

PLATTSBURGH - In its first three months of existence an affordable-housing development in the town of Plattsburgh has started to fill up fast, though rental units are still available.

White Pine Commons, a 32-unit development at the corner of Wallace Hill Road Extension and Military Turnpike, opened in September. The project was several years in the making for the Joint Council for Economic Opportunity of Clinton and Franklin Counties, a local nonprofit organization.

Scott Thurber, who manages the property for Buffalo-based Belmont Management Co., said six units still remain available, with a relatively short waiting list. The available units consist of three, three-bedroom and three, four-bedroom townhouses.

"It's a great opportunity for a family that's looking for something that's energy-efficient; these are brand-new units," said Thurber. "And, it's a pretty good community."

Caroline Durocher was one of the first tenants to move into the housing development. The mother of a 17-year-old son and 9-year-old daughter, Durocher was looking for a family-friendly neighborhood when deciding to move from her home in West Chazy.

"It was really hard for my daughter to have friends over because we lived in such a rural area," said Durocher. "You'd have to go pick them up or drive her to see them. Here, there are lots of kids her own age to play with."

In addition to the close-knit neighborhood, what drew Durocher to White Pine Commons was the overall look of the development.

"The townhouses are beautiful. They're absolutely gorgeous," said Durocher. "There's also a community center where we had a Christmas party and where you can have birthday parties at no cost to residents. It's a nice little community."

Having owned her own home, what was also important to Durocher was how the development would be maintained. So far, Thurber and his staff have been quick to work out any of the usual bugs that come with a new home.

"If something ever goes wrong, they're right here to fix it," said Durocher. "They don't let anything slide."

In order to qualify for housing, tenants must have an annual household income between $23,400 and $37,650, and pass credit and criminal background checks.

For more information, including how to fill out a rental application and rental prices, Thurber holds office hours at White Pine Commons Tuesday through Thursday. He may be reached at 561-2676. Applications may also be picked up at the JCEO offices, located at 54 Margaret St.

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