TARRYTOWN, N.Y. – If he were alive today, famed author Washington Irving would probably have a hard time trying to figure where exactly he lived.
Sunnyside, now a historical site run by Historic Hudson Valley, sits near the border between Tarrytown and Irvington. But as is the case for many residents throughout Westchester, there's a lot of confusion when it comes location.
“Sunnyside, the homestead of Washington Irving, is perhaps an extreme example,” Rob Schweitzer, director of public relations said.
Sunnyside is within the village of Tarrytown, but it has an Irvington post office address because Tarrytown does not deliver mail on that street. The village of Irvington begins on the other side of West Sunnyside Lane. To make things even more confusing, the village of Irvington is named after Irving and GPS maps don't recognize the site's official Tarrytown address.
“We tell people to please use 3 West Sunnyside Lane, Irvington, as that seems to work just fine,” Schweitzer said.
Confusion of this sort takes place throughout Tarrytown, Sleepy Hollow and Irvington. The New York Life corporate building, for example, has a Sleepy Hollow address although it is located within Mount Pleasant. A slice of V.E. Macy Park is actually in Irvington, even though it's cut off from the rest of the village and you can only get to it using the southbound lane of the Saw Mill River Parkway.
Zip codes are not always the best way to figure out where you live. The tri-village area is served by three zip codes: 10591 for Tarrytown, Sleepy Hollow and Pocantico Hills; 10533 for Irvington; and 10503 for Ardsley-on-Hudson, a hamlet within Irvington. Each village has its own post office—and a fourth is located at the Ardsley-on-Hudson train station.
Things get worse when it comes to figuring out school district boundaries. The Public Schools of the Tarrytowns serve Tarrytown and Sleepy Hollow—except if you live towards the southern end of Tarrytown, which is served by the Irvington Union Free School District.
Municipal boundaries within the Public Schools of the Tarrytowns' district can have a big impact when taxes are due, because Sleepy Hollow and Tarrytown are in separate towns with separate equalization rates. Sleepy Hollow residents saw an estimated 3.12 percent tax rate increase this year because they live in the town of Mount Pleasant. Tarrytown residents in the town of Greenburgh saw an estimated 1.97 percent tax rate increase.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo even has a hard time figuring out where he lives, according to The New York Times. Schweitzer agrees that figuring out where you are in Westchester County can be hard.
“I think there is a lot of confusion, in general, about municipal borders in Westchester,” Schweitzer said. “I know I get quite confused myself.”
Want to find out where you live? You can visit the U.S. Census Bureau's website and type your address into its Fact Finder.