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Gateway Law
NEW YORK STATE DEPARTMENT OF STATE
41 STATE STREET, ALBANY,
NY 12231

Local Law Filing                                                                 

        Village of Croton-on-Hudson

        Local Law Introductory No. 3 of the year 2004


A local law establishing a gateway overlay district within the Zoning Law of the Village  


Be it enacted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Croton-on-Hudson as follows:


Section 1.  Amendment to Zoning Law, Chapter 230 of the Croton-on-Hudson Village Code

A new Article IV.A entitled Gateway Overlay District shall be added to Chapter 230 and shall read as follows:

Article IVA – Gateway Overlay District


§ 230-20.1  Purpose / Definition of Gateway Overlay District

Croton’s commercial gateways are the major entry points from surrounding municipalities and roads.  The physical gateway areas are comprised of the roads and surrounding properties a motorist or pedestrian encounters when first entering the Village. These areas create a sense of arrival and connection to the Village, and establish an image and initial impression of the community.  

The 2003 Comprehensive Plan identified three gateway areas in the Village, which currently share the following defining characteristics:

1.      Vehicular entry points in Croton-on-Hudson from Route 9/9A
2.      Commercial or office uses principally accessed by automobile traffic
3.      Possibilities for development and redevelopment.

The purpose of the gateway overlay district is to establish standards that upgrade the image and function of gateway areas, strengthen the overall visual identity of the Village, and improve pedestrian linkages to adjacent residential neighborhoods.  

§ 230-20.2 - Location of Gateway Areas

Croton-on-Hudson’s three gateway areas are:

1.      Harmon / South Riverside, running along Croton Point Avenue between Route 9 and South Riverside Avenue, and along South Riverside Avenue between Croton Point Avenue and Benedict Boulevard.  The area is an important link to the train station via Croton Point Avenue and to the Harmon neighborhood.  It also provides a connection to the historic Van Cortlandt Manor to the south.   

2.      Municipal Place Shopping Area, consisting of lots on the north and south sides of Municipal Place between Route 9 and Maple Street, and the commercially-zoned portion of the block on the east side of Maple Street, and the lots located between Route 9 and South Riverside Avenue from the Village-owned parcel to the north to the intersection of Maple and South Riverside to the south, as shown on Figure 3.  The Municipal Place Shopping Area is an important entrance to the Village from Route 9.  It connects to the Upper Village via Maple Street and to the surrounding neighborhoods.  

3.      North End of the Village along Albany Post Road (9A), consisting of the eight lots between Routes 9 and 9A, and Village boundary and Warren Road.  This area marks the entrance to the Village from the north along Routes 9 and 9A.  

The locations of the gateway districts are shown in Figure 1.  

§ 230-20.3.     Gateway Overlay District Use Regulations

1.      Special Permit Uses. The uses permitted in the gateway districts shall correspond to the permitted and special permit uses set forth in the underlying zoning district.  In addition, the following uses, when not otherwise authorized in the underlying zone, shall be permitted by a special permit granted by the Village Board of Trustees in the Gateway districts:

a.      Farmers markets, greenmarkets or garden centers.

2.      Prohibited Uses. Notwithstanding uses otherwise permitted by the underlying zoning district, the following uses shall be prohibited in the gateway districts:
a.      Commercial parking lots
b.      Automobile storage lots
c.      Drive-through windows for commercial establishments
d.      Automobile or other vehicle dealerships
e.      Fast-food restaurants

§ 230-20.4      Gateway Overlay District Area and Bulk Regulations

1.      Maximum Allowable Floor Area Ratio

The maximum allowable Floor Area Ratio (FAR) standards that shall be adhered to for new development shall be the FAR listed for the underlying zone or the following, whichever is more restrictive:
a.      0.35 for single-use properties, that is a property proposed for only one principal permitted use.
b.      0.40 for multi-use properties, including combinations of retail and office, retail and residential uses or office and residential.  

2.      Maximum Building Square Footage
The maximum permissible square footage for any single building shall not exceed 20,000 square feet.  This requirement is imposed in order to encourage a compact urban design of the gateway.

3.      Maximum Permitted Square Footage for Any Single Commercial Use.
The maximum permissible square footage for any single commercial use by any single occupant or tenant shall not exceed 8,000 square feet of gross floor area.

§ 230-20.5      Gateway Overlay District Design Regulations

1.      Off-Street Parking Placement / Design.
All off-street parking shall be located along the side and in the rear of buildings, unless the applicant demonstrates to the Planning Board that site or business constraints prevent conformance with this requirement.  In accordance with §230-52 of the Zoning Code, parking lots shall be landscaped.  

2.      Curb Cuts and Sidewalks.  
a.      Vehicular Curb Cuts. Properties within the gateway areas shall be permitted a maximum of one (1) vehicular curb cut per lot per street frontage, unless the property owner can demonstrate to the Planning Board that this standard either cannot be achieved or is not appropriate to the specific site.  Where the owner of a developed property with more than one curb cut applies for a change of use, a site plan and/or amendment to a site plan, the property owner shall be required to meet the conditions of this paragraph.  Curb cut consolidation plans shall be presented to the Planning Board as part of the site plan application.  Where possible, curb cuts shall be shared among adjoining properties.

b.      Sidewalks. All sidewalks shall be properly maintained in accordance with Village regulations.  All new property developments must provide sidewalks along any property lines that front on public streets, unless this requirement is waived by the Planning Board due to the special circumstances of a particular site.  Internal sidewalks will be provided as deemed appropriate by the Planning Board.

3.      Open Space.
To enhance the appearance of the gateway areas and contribute to Croton’s open space character, a minimum of fifteen percent (15%) of the lot area shall be set aside as open space.  Applicants will be required to submit a landscape plan as part of the site plan application.

a.      This open space allotment shall either be left in its natural state or appropriately landscaped and open to the air, and may include:
1.      Landscaped or planted building setbacks
2.      Landscaped or planted islands in parking lots
3.      Grass or planted areas on the lot.  

b.      The open space allotment may not include parking lots, buildings or sidewalks.  

c.      Where a lot has frontage on a street or sidewalk, the planting of trees, shrubs and other landscaping shall be designed to provide an attractive, green buffer between the building and the sidewalk and the sidewalk and the street.  

d.      A buffer of street trees, ornamental shrubs or low stone walls shall be required to screen parking areas and auto service stations from adjacent sidewalks and streets.  The effectiveness of the buffer including its width height and length shall be determined during site plan review by the Planning Board.

4.      Signage.
All signs in the gateway districts must conform to the Village’s signage regulations set forth in §230-44 of the Zoning Code.  In addition, no sign in a gateway district shall exceed 48 square feet in area.

5.      Lighting
a.      All applicants shall be required to submit a lighting diagram at the time of site plan application showing the location of lights on buildings and in parking lots, and the actual areas of illumination.

b.      The illumination glare from building and parking lot lights shall not be permitted to spill over into any adjoining lots.  

c.      Parking Lot Lighting.  Free-standing lighting in parking lots shall not be higher than 20 feet.  

6.      Building Orientation
In order to discourage parking lots in front of buildings new buildings shall be oriented with the building front facing the street and situated close to the front property line to create a more continuous street wall.

§ 230-20.6      Gateway Overlay District Design Guidelines

Each of the gateway areas should have a special character that should be preserved and enhanced.  Accordingly, in addition to the Design Regulations set forth above in § 230-20.5 of this ordinance, design guidelines have been established in the 2003 Comprehensive Plan for each of the three gateway areas that build upon the individual features of each district.  The design guidelines for each gateway district are depicted in Figures 2, 3, and 4 of this ordinance and described below.  

1.      South Riverside/Harmon.  
New development, landscaping and streetscaping in the South Riverside/Harmon district shall be designed to enhance the district’s small-scale character and to improve connections between the railroad station and the South Riverside/Harmon shopping area.  

a.      Pedestrian and Bicycle Networks.  To improve safety and accessibility in the Harmon/South Riverside area, the installation of sidewalks and bikeways along the south side of Croton Point Avenue shall be required as practicable.  Any new sidewalks shall include paving treatments that are consistent with the sidewalk design incorporated in the commercial areas on South Riverside between Benedict Boulevard and Oneida Avenue.  

b.      Landscaping.  Landscaping in the South Riverside/Harmon gateway district shall conform to the regulations set forth in §230-20.5 (3) of this ordinance and §230-52 of the Zoning Code.  In addition, street trees and ornamental shrubs shall be planted on the east and west sides of South Riverside Avenue to enhance the appearance of this corridor and create a more attractive entrance to the Village.   

c.      Streetscape.  The Planning Board shall require the use of pedestrian-scale lighting and other streetscape features similar to those used in the North Riverside and Upper Village commercial areas, to visually link this district to other commercial areas and to create a more attractive and accessible pedestrian environment.

d.      Signage.  All signage within the district shall conform to the signage regulations set forth in the Zoning Code.  In addition, to reinforce the area’s role as a major gateway, the Planning Board shall encourage the design and placement of a distinctive gateway feature such as a clock or sculpture near the corner of Croton Point Avenue and South Riverside Avenue.

2.      Municipal Place.
a.      Pedestrian Networks.  A network of pedestrian routes would provide safe and attractive links between the shopping plazas and other commercial sites, as well as to other major destination points such as schools, the library and recreation areas.  In site plan applications the following shall be implemented wherever it is deemed practicable by the Planning Board:

1)      The installation of sidewalks in the following locations within the gateway districts:
·       The west side of Maple Street along the parcel with the following tax map designation:  78.12-3-3
·       The east side of Maple Street from Municipal Place to Hudson Street
·       The north and south sides of Municipal Place between South Riverside Avenue and Maple Street

2)      The installation of sidewalks within each shopping plaza.  These routes shall link directly to store entrances and to pedestrian crosswalks, and shall include landscaping, signage and seating areas that encourage pedestrian activity.  

3)      Any new sidewalks shall include paving treatments that are consistent with the sidewalk design incorporated in the North Riverside at Brook Street and Upper Village commercial areas.  

b.      Landscaping.  Landscaping in the Municipal Place gateway district shall conform to the regulations set forth in §230-20.5 (3) of this ordinance and §230-52 of the Zoning Code.  In addition, landscaped islands, including ornamental trees and shrubs, shall be incorporated as practicable for the plaza parking lots.

c.      Streetscape.  The Planning Board shall require the use of pedestrian-scale lighting and other streetscape features similar to those used in the North Riverside at Brook Street or Upper Village commercial areas, to visually link this district to other commercial areas and to create a more attractive and accessible pedestrian environment.

d.      Signage.  All signage within the district shall conform to the signage regulations set forth in the Zoning Code.  

3.      North End.  
New development, landscaping and streetscaping in the North End gateway district shall be designed to preserve the district’s residential and rural feel, connect the district to the neighborhoods to the south, and provide a more defined entrance into the Village.

a.      Pedestrian Networks.  The installation of sidewalks along the Route 9 side of Route 9A, approximately from the village boundary line to the properties immediately south of Warren Road, and the installation of sidewalks on Warren Road between Route 9 and Route 9A shall be incorporated into site plans as practicable.  Any new sidewalks along Route 9A shall include paving treatments that are consistent with the sidewalk design incorporated in the North Riverside at Brook Street and Upper Village commercial areas.  

b.      Landscaping.  Landscaping in the North End gateway district shall conform to the regulations set forth in §230-20.5 (3) of this ordinance and §230-52 of the Zoning Code.  In addition, street trees and ornamental shrubs shall also be planted on the east side of Route 9 and the west side of Route 9A to form a buffer between these roads and the North End gateway properties.   

c.      Stone Walls.  The use of low stone walls consistent with existing built walls along property lines to screen parking, to provide a special identity for this district, and to visually link the district to similar features south of Warren Road shall be preferred in considering site plans.  

§ 230-20.7      Compliance with Gateway District Regulations
All site plan, change of use and special permit applications within a Gateway Overlay District shall provide a design guidelines compliance chart or drawing which shall show how the application conforms to the gateway improvement plans set forth in the 2003 Comprehensive Plan and described in § 230-20.6 of this ordinance.  The Planning Board shall use such compliance chart or drawing in its review of the application.  The applicant shall indicate to the Planning Board reasons for any non-compliance with the gateway improvement plans.  

Section 2.  Zoning Overlays

A.      South Riverside/Harmon Zoning District

The following parcels having the following Village tax map designations hereby comprise the South Riverside/Harmon Zoning District

        79.13-2-5
        79.13-2-6
        79.13-2-18
        79.13-2-19
        79.13-2-20
        79.13-2-21
        79.13-2-22
        79.13-2-22.1
        79.13-2-23
        79.13-2-24
        79.13-2-25
        79.13-2-26
        79.13-2-27
        79.13-2-28
        79.13-2-29
        79.13-2-30
        79.13-2-31
        79.13-2-32
        79.13-2-33

B.      Municipal Place

The following parcels having the following Village tax map designations hereby comprise the Municipal Place Zoning District

        78.12-3-4
        78.12-3-5
        78.12-3-6
        78.12-3-7
        78.12-3-3
        78.12-3-2
        78.12-3-8
        78.12-3-9
        78.12-3-10
        79.9-1-30
        79.9-1-77
        79.9-1-66
        79.9-1-67

C.      North End

The following parcels having the following Village tax map designations hereby comprise the North End Zoning District

67.10-2-11
67.10-2-12
67.10-2-13
67.10-2-14
67.10-2-15
67.10-2-16
67.10-2-17
67.10-2-1


Section 3.  The following definition shall be added to the definitions section of the code, 230-4
“Terms Defined”


Fast Food Restaurant:  An establishment primarily engaged in the sale of ready-to-consume food and beverages, generally served in disposable or prepackaged containers or wrappers, in which patrons usually select their orders from a posted menu offering a limited number of specialized items such as but not limited to hamburgers, chicken, fish and chips, pizza, tacos and hot dogs; these items are prepared according to standardized procedures for consumption either on or off the premises in a facility where a substantial portion of the sales to the public is by drive-in or stand-up service and primary cleanup is generally performed by the customer.  The term “fast-food restaurant” shall not be considered to include restaurant, delicatessen, take-out establishment, bakery, coffee shop, or ice cream/confectionary store.

Section 4.  This Local Law shall be effective upon filing in the office of the Secretary of State.