Milford's Ryder Woods residents are worried

Today the New Haven Register published an article I wrote about Ryder Woods residents concerns about an affordable housing complex that is hoping to receive approval to be built about a quarter mile away from their complex.

For those who forgot, Ryder residents were evicted from their previous home on the Boston Post Road in the 1990s, but won a legal battle allowing them to stay.

But in the early 2000s Developer Louis Ceruzzi agreed to pay $20 million for their land, and another $5 million to relocate Ryder residents to a 50-acre parcel on Cascade Boulevard, which was kind of out-of-sight compared to their home on the Post Road.

Almost 200 Ryder families moved seven years ago, and three years ago they bought the land from Ceruzzi ensuring they can never be evicted again.

In my story today Ryder residents thought they were out of the limelight, but now they are concerned about this proposed housing development. They say the site contains mercury and they have health concerns. Also they say the development is too close to them, and Ryder residents said their quality of life will suffer.

As a reporter who covered Ryder residents' entire sage over the past 12 years it's a tough one. I met with so many of the families to hear their stories back when they had to move. I heard the concerns in their voices, especially over the uncertainty.

Since the move Ryder residents have been happy. They liked being left alone. Their new home park looks fabulous. It's clean, well-maintained and just looks very nice.

When I spoke to about a dozen Ryder residents last week there was just sadness. Not the kind of sadness they felt many years ago, but a different kind of emotion where they are just hoping to be left alone.

It will be interesting to see what the Planning and Zoning Board will do, but it's a decent bet the project gets approved because it's filed under the state's affordable housing statute, which makes it almost impossible for land use agencies to deny those projects.

What do you think should happen to the proposal? Share your thoughts here.

The Milford Planning and Zoning Board meets 7:30 p.m. June 5 at City Hall to hold a public hearing on the issue.


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