VILLAGE OF CROTON ON HUDSON, NEW YORK
PLANNING BOARD MEETING MINUTES – TUESDAY, AUGUST 22, 2006
A regular meeting of the Planning Board of the Village of Croton-on-Hudson, New York was held on Tuesday, August 22, 2006 in the Municipal Building.
MEMBERS PRESENT: Chris Kehoe, Chairman
ALSO PRESENT: Ann Gallelli, Liaison from the Village Board
Daniel O’Connor, P.E., Village Engineer
1. Call to Order:
The meeting was called to order at 8:00 P.M. by Chairman Kehoe.
2. OLD BUSINESS:
Referral from the Village Board for an Amended Special Permit for 1A Croton Point Avenue
David Steinmetz of Zarin & Steinmetz was present to represent the Applicant.
Mr. Steinmetz noted that, since the last meeting, his firm has submitted a letter to the Planning Board, dated August 17, 2006, with some additional materials attached to this letter. When the Applicant last appeared before the Planning Board there were questions/issues raised by the Village Engineer. The Applicant thought that the Village Engineer was going to be communicating these questions/issues in writing to them. To date, nothing has been received. Mr. Steinmetz noted that they have submitted a traffic analysis, prepared by Adler Consulting, which was the firm that prepared the original traffic analysis in 1998. Adler Consulting was unable to attend the meeting tonight. Mr. Steinmetz stated that what he was hoping could be accomplished tonight was to “set up a game plan of where this is
going.” At the last meeting, there was a discussion about hiring a consultant(s) to advise the Village in the review of this application. Mr. Steinmetz told the Planning Board that what has happened on the Board of Trustees level is the Board of Trustees has declared their intent to be designated the Lead Agency.
Mr. Steinmetz stated that, from their (the Applicant’s) viewpoint, this application is a re-issuance of a permit that was previously and extensively reviewed, discussed, negotiated and issued in 1998. In their view, this is a straightforward application.
The Village Engineer said that we (the Village) do not consider this application to be a straightforward re-issuance of a special permit. There were numerous problems that occurred after the 1998 special permit was issued. The Planning Board is going to look at this application very seriously. Mr. Steinmetz said that the Applicant would like to get back before the Board of Trustees to deal with the issues to which the Village Engineer is referring. The Applicant would like the Planning Board’s recommendation to the Board of Trustees to get underway.
The Village Engineer noted that there is a process in place that the Planning Board has to go through. At an earlier meeting (July 25th), the Planning Board discussed hiring AKRF Environmental and Planning Consultants as their consultant. It was initially thought that this would be the firm to hire because of their experience with the Village on previous actions concerning this site. At the last meeting (August 8th), the Planning Board discussed the possibility of broadening the scope and looking at other consultant firms besides AKRF. The Planning Board has since received resumes from Stearns & Wheler, LLC and Malcolm Pirnie.
Mr. Steinmetz asked if these consultant firms are making their proposals to the Planning Board or the Village Board, to which the Village Engineer said that the consultants’ resumes are being reviewed by the Planning Board. The Planning Board would then make their recommendation on the consultant(s) to the Village Board. Mr. Steinmetz said that it is his understanding that the consultant(s) would ultimately be retained at the pleasure of the Board of Trustees, to which the Village Engineer said that this is, indeed, the case.
Mr. Steinmetz asked if the cost of these consultants would be passed on to the Applicant, to which the Village Engineer said, yes. Mr. Steinmetz said that he would like some understanding as to where the authority is for the Planning Board to hire a consultant. The Village Engineer told Mr. Steinmetz that, for this information on the hiring of a consultant, he should look at the new professional fee chapter in the Village Code that was adopted a few months ago.
Chairman Kehoe noted that he was unable to attend the last Planning Board meeting when the discussion took place regarding the hiring of the consultants. Ms. Allen told Chairman Kehoe that at that meeting the Planning Board discussed the possibility of considering other firms besides AKRF. It was noted that the time constraints for review of this application had been lifted as a result of Judge Nicolai’s decision to grant the Applicant a time extension. The Planning Board would want to move this application along, but now that there is some relief from the time constraints previously imposed, the Planning Board would like to consider some other possibilities for consultants. Mr. Steinmetz said that he would hope that the Planning Board would move ahead with the hiring of the consultant(s) in a
timely manner. Ms. Allen said that their (the Planning Board’s) goal at the last meeting was to have the recommendation on consultants prepared in time for the Village Board meeting of September 5th.
Chairman Kehoe suggested that the Planning Board could hold a discussion on the consultants tonight. Mr. Andrews noted that the Planning Board has just received the additional materials on the consultants. He would like to have more time to properly review these materials in order to make an informed decision. Chairman Kehoe suggested that the board members could review the consultants’ resumes on their own. The Planning Board could then discuss the matter via emails and (still) make their recommendation in time for the September 5th meeting.
Mr. Steinmetz said that he would want to know when the Village’s professional consultant(s) would be attending a Planning Board meeting so that he could have the Applicant’s professional “crew” at that meeting.
Mr. Steinmetz noted that they (the Applicant) knew that traffic was going to be a legitimate question. Their consultant, Adler Consulting, has generated a traffic analysis. Mr. Steinmetz told the board that he would make sure that Adler Consulting would be available for whichever meeting the Planning Board would want them to attend.
Chairman Kehoe stated that the Planning Board has asked for the two previous traffic reports submitted in 1998 and 2001, respectively. The Planning Board wants to compare the old reports with the one just submitted. Mr. Steinmetz told the board that the data in 2001 showed fewer trucks than what was thought might be the case. To his knowledge, when the previous facility was operating, there was never any cueing of trucks or any interference with the traffic at the train station.
Chairman Kehoe said that he is looking at this as a full-fledged application before the board. There are four new members on the Planning Board. Chairman Kehoe suggested that, in order for the Planning Board to familiarize themselves with the site/facility, the Planning Board should go on a site visit. Chairman Kehoe noted to the Applicant that he personally could not make a recommendation to the Village Board without first seeing the application materials, which have been requested. Mr. Andrews added that this is a new applicant, and the Planning Board would want to see the corresponding new application materials.
Mr. Steinmetz told the board members that the issue before them is not one of regulating the user (the applicant) but instead is one of regulating the use (land use). To this extent it is precisely the same use that was granted the special permit in 1998. Mr. Steinmetz said that he thinks it is absolutely relevant for the Planning Board to look at the old (1998) application. However, the land use is no different than that which was granted the special permit in 1998. Chairman Kehoe said that the problem is that, “It did not work [out] really well” the first time around. There were issues regarding the operation of the facility. The Village has to try to figure out a way to make sure that the same issues do not arise again. Mr. Steinmetz told the board that the Applicant wants to make sure of this
as well. The Applicant would like to hear the Planning Board’s suggestions on any possible conditions that could be imposed on their special permit to address these issues.
Mr. Steinmetz noted that NIR has consented to operate with the same conditions as were originally imposed.
Mr. Andrews said that even though the intent and plan (for the use of the land) might be the same, the “track record” of this applicant is also relevant in the review of this application. “Do we have some guarantee or assurance that it will run as they say it will run?” Mr. Andrews noted that the last applicant did not run the operation in compliance with the terms imposed. He questioned how the Village is going to make sure that the new applicant uses the land in compliance with the Village’s terms and conditions. Mr. Steinmetz stated that their (the Applicant’s) position is that the user of the property is beyond the prerogative of this board. Unlike the NYSDEC and the County Solid Waste Commission who issue permits to users (individuals/operators), the Planning Board is looking at the use of the
land. Mr. Andrews reiterated that he believes the operators and their record is relevant.
Ms. Allen said that she agrees with Chairman Kehoe that the Planning Board needs to see a complete application with all the required application materials. There were certain mechanisms that failed in so far as the original application is concerned. What was planned did not work in all cases. The Planning Board needs to look at the various aspects of this application once again. Mr. Steinmetz said that, with respect to the original application, it was not that the mechanisms failed so much as there were some transgressions of “people doing the wrong thing.”
Mr. Steinmetz stated that the use being proposed is a pre-existing nonconforming use. A C&D processing facility is now a prohibited use in the Light Industrial (LI) Zoning District. The only reason the Applicant is before the board(s) is because the court has said that the Applicant has to obtain a permit from the Village. Mr. Steinmetz said that this is not an “as of right” application. The use is now prohibited. However, Metro Enviro was there already and was lawfully operating a C&D processing facility at this site. The facility was ultimately closed down. Mr. Steinmetz reiterated that this use is a pre-existing nonconforming use and, as such, it is allowed to continue unless it is abandoned.
Mr. Steinmetz stated that, as noted in his letter of August 17, 2006, the Planning Board had indicated at the last Planning Board meeting the items that were required to be provided under Section 230-55 of the Village Code. Mr. Steinmetz said that he does not think this chapter applies to this application. This chapter talks about special permit uses that are otherwise enumerated in the code. Mr. Steinmetz reiterated that he does not think this use (C&D processing facility) applies. A C&D processing facility is a prohibited use. The Village Engineer told those present that the issue Mr. Steinmetz has just raised might be an issue that the Village needs to ask its attorney to address. He told the Applicant that the Planning Board would seek the guidance of Michael Gerrard on this matter. The
Village Engineer noted to the Applicant that in their review the Planning Board is going to take a broad approach, looking at all of the issues that have to be addressed and then sending a recommendation to the Village Board. If there is a recommendation from the Planning Board that the Village Board does not agree with, the Village Board can “take it out,” to which Mr. Steinmetz said, “Fair enough.”
The Village Engineer told the Applicant that he would prepare for them a non-inclusive list of items that would need to be addressed. Once the Village’s consultant(s) is (are) hired, there might be new items that are “brought to the table.” Ms. Allen noted that the Planning Board members might bring up items, too.
The Village Engineer told those present that Dvirka & Bartilucci Consulting Engineers have informed him that they would like to be considered for this project as well. They would be submitting their qualifications to the Planning Board for review.
Chairman Kehoe said that he would consider AKRF to be more of a planning consultant firm and the others (Stearns & Wheler, Malcolm Pirnie, and Dvirka & Bartilucci) to be geared more toward engineering. He asked if the Planning Board would want both types of consultants or would the Planning Board consider “a Stearns & Wheler or Malcolm Pirnie” to be sufficient. The Village Engineer said that he has spoken with Stearns & Wheler and Malcolm Pirnie, and they have both tailored their proposals to the Village to accentuate their expertise in the solid waste area. They have specifically given information to the Planning Board regarding their background in solid waste facilities. Chairman Kehoe said that, as he understands it, the planning consultant would be giving the board advice about
the code, land use, permitting requirements, etc. The Village Engineer noted that, in this particular instance, the operating facility is already built. It is more the operation and management of the facility and the environmental issues that go along with managing this type of facility that would have to be looked at. The Village Engineer noted that all of these consultant firms have, as part of their staff, a traffic engineer.
Mr. Steinmetz said that he thinks the Planning Board has to “figure out” exactly what the issues are. Traffic is an issue. Materials handling and dust control are also issues. In his opinion the Planning Board needs an engineering/consulting firm that addresses traffic, materials handling and air emissions. Mr. Steinmetz stated that the single most important issue has always been traffic. Mr. Steinmetz said that the NYSDEC has far more expertise in regulating solid waste facilities. It is the state agency in charge of regulatory control under the Environmental Conservation Law. In his view the local issue has been the traffic. It was the primary focus of the board originally. Ms. Allen said that the Planning Board is also concerned about health and environmental issues.
Given the problems that happened at this site, the Planning Board would want to thoroughly review these aspects of the application. The board would want to be assured that any issues relating to the potentially negative environmental impacts of this application have been thoroughly addressed.
Ms. Allen noted that she had brought up at a previous meeting(s) that the Planning Board might also want to hire a consultant firm with an expertise in railroad transport. She told Mr. Steinmetz that the Planning Board needs to understand the arrangements that exist between his client (NIR) and the railroad. Mr. Steinmetz said that he would hope that one of the consultants now being considered would have the “comfort zone” in conducting that kind of inquiry. Mr. Steinmetz stated that, with respect to the issue regarding the railroad cars, he would think the Planning Board would want to have their consultant confirm what Andreas Gruson told the board last time about the number of cars that fit on the site, etc.
Mr. Andrews said that he had a question on the traffic report. He asked if there had been an updated study done with respect to monitoring or measuring the traffic, not so much on the site but off the site i.e., the train station traffic. Mr. Steinmetz said that he does not believe any additional intersection analyses were done. They (Adler Consulting) were comfortable with the conclusions drawn in 1998. The Village Engineer noted that the Village is opening the southerly access road to Croton Bay. The Village expects that opening this route would change the traffic pattern at that intersection. Mr. Steinmetz asked if a traffic analysis was ever done, to which the Village Engineer said that it was. Mr. Steinmetz asked if the Applicant could have a copy of this traffic
analysis, to which the Village Engineer said that he would see to it that the Applicant gets a copy.
Chairman Kehoe told Mr. Steinmetz that he should stay in touch with the Village Engineer to know when the Planning Board would be ready to have their consultant(s) attend a Planning Board meeting.
The Village Engineer said that he thinks September 12th might be too soon to have a consultant attend a Planning Board meeting, especially if the consultant is not familiar with the site/application. Mr. Steinmetz noted that, if the board hires a consultant that is unfamiliar with the property, then he would think it would be beneficial to set up the site visit first. The Village Engineer asked the Planning Board if they wanted to arrange a site visit with their consultant(s) first and then schedule the meeting with the consultant(s) present, to which the board members all said, yes.
Mr. Sharma asked what the issues are that the Planning Board needs to be satisfied with to make a recommendation. He said that in order to make an intelligent decision, the Planning Board would need to feel satisfied that they have thoroughly addressed the issues relating to this type of application. Mr. Sharma noted that the Village’s prospective consultant has to be very familiar with the waste management industry as a whole and this site in particular. The Planning Board would depend on their consultant to give an objective viewpoint. Mr. Steinmetz stated that the Village Board, not the Planning Board, is the Lead Agency for this application. The Planning Board’s role is to make a recommendation. It is a more limited role. Mr. Steinmetz thought that what Mr. Sharma was just
describing for the Planning Board is more “the level of inquiry” of the Board of Trustees. Mr. Sharma noted to Mr. Steinmetz that, in so far as the Planning Board is concerned, the health and welfare of the community is paramount. Mr. Steinmetz said that there is a point in the process where the Planning Board’s role ends and the Board of Trustees’ [role] continues.
Ms. Allen said that it would be useful for the Planning Board to see the subsequent set of conditions that was considered in 2003. These conditions augmented the original conditions from the 1998 special permit. Ms. Allen thought that it would be useful to have this material and also to have the Village Board minutes from that time period. The Village Engineer said that he would obtain for the board a copy of the special permit that the Village Board was considering re-issuing to Metro Enviro that was never re-issued. Chairman Kehoe noted that this information would be helpful because it takes into account the problems that had transpired at the Metro Enviro site during the previous five years (1998-2003). Mr. Steinmetz said that the Planning Board should not assume that he has seen
this documentation. There may have been documentation that was tested and explored that he never saw. The Village Engineer suggested that he could provide these materials to Mr. Steinmetz as well.
Mr. Sharma asked if he had heard correctly that there were conditions in the original permit under which the permit could be revoked, to which Mr. Steinmetz said that there were. Conditions 40 and 41 specifically related to stop work orders and suspension/revocation of the permit and the ability to impose monetary penalties.
The Village Engineer noted that the Planning Board wanted to know how these two operations (NIR and BSOR) are going to function on this site. Mr. Steinmetz said that the sublease doesn’t provide any details on how the site will be operated. Mr. Andrews asked why the sublease was not mentioned at the last meeting when the Planning Board asked about any documents that described the proposed arrangement between BSOR and NIR. Mr. Steinmetz recalled that, at that meeting, the Planning Board posed questions on the interrelationship between these two companies but not specifically about the sublease. Mr. Andrews stated that the Planning Board asked about the relationship or arrangement between the two and again asked for a copy of any agreement describing the proposed arrangement at the site. He (Mr.
Steinmetz) had told the board that he does not represent BSOR. Mr. Steinmetz noted that Mr. Gruson had said at the last meeting that the facility could only handle a certain number of railroad cars at any one time. Mr. Gruson reached the conclusion that there is no way that they would be increasing the number of truck trips and creating a traffic issue. Mr. Steinmetz stated that he would think that this would be an issue that the Planning Board would bring to their consultant’s attention. Mr. Andrews said that, even though he (Mr. Steinmetz) does not represent BSOR, he does represent the affiliate of the lessor in the relationship and asked Mr. Steinmetz to provide a copy of the sublease. Mr. Steinmetz said he would look into it.
Mr. Steinmetz noted that there are probably other properties in the Village where there is more than one land use on the property. For example, the shopping center on Maple Avenue has a bank, dry cleaning establishment, coffee shop, etc. He (Mr. Steinmetz) would not want to have a situation where “we don’t know which user has done something to violate some [Village] ordinance.” Mr. Steinmetz said that the subject property at 1A Croton Point Avenue is no different than any other property. It is going to be the Village’s obligation to regulate, review and have oversight over this property. If the Village perceives that there has been a violation of the code, the Village is going to take the appropriate action. The Village Engineer said that in a shopping center, the different uses are
looked at and decisions are made with respect to parking, traffic, etc. These are variables that are regulated by the zoning. The property at 1A Croton Point Avenue is different in that there is a variable on the site that the Village does not regulate. The Village Engineer stated that it would be helpful to the Planning Board to see the land use parameters in the sublease between NIR and the railroad (BSOR). Mr. Steinmetz said that if the Village Engineer were to articulate the questions for BSOR, Mr. Steinmetz would go to BSOR to try to obtain the answers. The Village Engineer stated again that these land use issues are very important to the Planning Board in their review of this application.
Mr. Steinmetz told the board to let the Applicant know if they wanted to do a site walk before the next meeting.
Mr. Steinmetz stated that the Applicant would like to have any correspondence that the Village Engineer could provide to them on his (the Village Engineer’s) specific environmental/operational concerns. Also, anything that the Village Engineer could provide to articulate the questions for BSOR would also be helpful.
Mr. Steinmetz noted to the Planning Board that it is clear that the Planning Board wants to see a copy of the sublease agreement between NIR and BSOR. Trustee Gallelli told the Planning Board members that this sublease agreement is available on the Surface Transportation Board (STB) web site.
Trustee Gallelli asked if she could clarify a matter brought up by Ms. Allen earlier in the meeting regarding the draft special permit for Metro Enviro. Trustee Gallelli stated that, with respect to the Metro Enviro re-issuance application, the public hearing that took place in 2004 pertained to the proposed settlement agreement and not to the conditions of the special permit. There is a draft special permit that was never taken up beyond the “draft” stage because the settlement agreement was never authorized. Ms. Allen thought that this draft special permit would contain useful information for the Planning Board in their review of the current application.
Mr. Steinmetz thanked the Planning Board for their time and consideration of this application.
3. NEW BUSINESS:
a) Dante Cretara – 10 Arlington Drive (Sec. 79.13 Blk. 4 Lot 7) – Application for a Minor Site Plan Approval for a New Single-Family Dwelling
Dante Cretara, owner of the property, was present. Mr. Cretara stated that he is applying for a minor site plan approval for new construction of a single-family residence. He would be happy to answer any questions that the Planning Board might have.
The Village Engineer told the board members that the situation with Mr. Cretara’s lot is a classic case of a Croton resident in the past owning two lots side by side, building a house on one of the two lots and leaving the other lot vacant. The property owner then decides to sell the vacant lot. The Village Engineer told the Planning Board that a lot line alteration has recently taken place to make it possible for Mr. Cretara to build on the vacant lot. The property line was shifted so that the garage on the previously improved lot is more than five feet from the property line. By changing the lot line in this way, the garage is now in compliance with the Village’s Zoning Code. The Village Engineer noted that there has also been a slight alteration of the lot line at the rear of the property so as
to provide more yard space for the existing house on the adjacent lot.
Mr. Cretara noted to the board members that the existing asphalt driveway on his (the vacant) lot was put in to serve the existing house.
The Village Engineer stated that there are steep slopes on this piece of property but the house is being constructed in an area that does not have steep slopes.
The Village Engineer asked if there is a shed on the property that is being removed, to which Mr. Cretara said that the existing shed would be removed.
The Village Engineer asked if there would be any blasting required for the proposed house construction, to which Mr. Cretara said that that there would not be any blasting.
Ms. Allen asked Mr. Cretara if he would consider using the existing asphalt driveway for the new house, to which Mr. Cretara said that the lower half of this driveway would be used for the new house.
Mr. Luntz asked if the existing driveway would service the house in the back (on the adjacent lot), to which Mr. Cretara said that it would not. He added that this driveway, which goes to the back of the property, would remain at this time. Mr. Cretara noted that the people living in the existing (adjacent) house have a small driveway in the front that leads to their garage. This is the driveway they use.
Mr. Luntz asked if the proposed house meets the setback requirements, to which the Village Engineer said that it does. Once the foundation has been put in, the Village Engineer would ask for an as-built survey so as to make sure that the house has not been shifted in any way.
The Village Engineer said that, with respect to the drainage on the property, there should be yard drains (or something similar) installed in the rear to carry the water to the front.
Mr. Sharma noted that the existing driveway is very long. He asked if the Applicant still needed such a long driveway. Mr. Cretara stated that he would need this driveway in the future as a means of accessing the rear of the property, which is quite elevated. He would be installing a shed in the back for storage. The Village Engineer noted to Mr. Cretara that this shed must be a minimum of five feet from the property line. Mr. Sharma asked why the Applicant would need a driveway for a shed, to which Mr. Cretara said that the rear of the property is quite steep. The driveway would make it easier to get up to the back. This storage shed would be much more useable by being able to drive right up to it.
Chairman Kehoe asked if there were any other vacant lots in that area of the Village, to which the Village Engineer said that there is a vacant lot on Franklin Avenue.
Ms. Allen said that she has been out to look at Mr. Cretara’s lot. There are pine trees on the left side of the property that she hopes will be preserved. Mr. Cretara said that he intends to save these pine trees. Ms. Allen stated that there is also a 36-inch (DBH) maple tree near the street that she hopes can be preserved, to which Mr. Cretara said that he intends to preserve this tree as well.
Mr. Cretara said that there is one 48-inch (DBH) willow tree that needs to come down, which is not labeled on the plan(s). This tree should have been marked “to be removed” but it was not. This willow tree is split in half and has to come down.
The Village Engineer stated that erosion & sedimentation controls have to be placed on the plan(s).
The Village Engineer asked if the excavated soil is going off site, to which Mr. Cretara said that he will be removing some of the soil but will try to save all the topsoil.
Chairman Kehoe asked if there were any other comments, to which there were none. Chairman Kehoe read aloud the draft resolution.
Chairman Kehoe stated that, as noted earlier by the Village Engineer, there should be a condition in the resolution that yard drains should be installed, to the satisfaction of the Village Engineer. There should also be a condition that erosion & sedimentation controls be placed on the plan(s). Ms. Allen stated that there should be a condition pertaining to the physical protection of the pine trees to the left of the property. Some type of tree protection, probably tree armor, should be placed on these trees.
Chairman Kehoe entertained a motion to approve this minor site plan application with the conditions discussed tonight. The motion to approve was made by Mr. Andrews, seconded by Mr. Luntz and carried by a vote of 5 to 0.
b) Gary & Tina Wagner – 101 Scenic Drive West (Sec. 67.10 Blk. 2 Lot 34) – Application for an Amended Building Envelope to Construct a Swimming Pool
Mr. Wagner told the board members that about a month ago he and his wife started to put together a plan to build an in-ground swimming pool on their property. They have been residents of the Village for eight years. Mr. Wagner stated that he spoke with the Village Engineer who informed him that their lot is part of the Westwind Subdivision. All of the Westwind Subdivision lots have building envelopes within which accessory structures, such as swimming pools, must be built. If the accessory structure is proposed to be outside the building envelope, then the homeowner must apply to the Planning Board for a modification to the building envelope.
Chairman Kehoe noted that he was not a member of the Planning Board when this subdivision was approved. He asked if at the time the subdivision was approved these building envelopes were put on the lots at the discretion of the Planning Board, to which Ms. Allen said that this was, indeed, the case.
Chairman Kehoe said that he drove by the subject lot and took a look at the area where the pool is being proposed. The lot is a corner lot, which is ample in size. Chairman Kehoe noted that the Planning Board has received a letter from the neighboring property owner in support of this application.
Mrs. Wagner showed the board members photographs of their property, including the area where the pool would be located, from various vantage points in their neighborhood. She noted that they do not want to cut down any trees for the pool construction.
Mr. Luntz asked Mr. Wagner if they are proposing to fence off the pool with a four-foot fence, to which Mr. Wagner said, yes. Mr. Luntz asked if there would be grass between the deck and the fence, to which Mr. Wagner said that there would be.
The Village Engineer asked if the excavation fill is going off site, to which Mr. Wagner said, no. Their builder has told them that they would need to use it. Mr. Wagner noted that the builder is proposing a small retaining wall. The builder felt that they would need the excavated soil, and they might even need to bring some in.
The Village Engineer noted that erosion & sedimentation controls should be shown on the plan(s). A silt fence should be installed in the back of the property.
Mr. Luntz told the Wagner’s that, with respect to the retaining wall feature, they should talk to their builder about incorporating the retaining wall into their fence line. This is not the case based on what is drawn on the plan. Mr. Wagner told Mr. Luntz that the drawing to which he is referring is his (Mr. Wagner’s) own drawing and not the builder’s. The retaining wall would be set up differently from what is being shown on the plan. Mr. Luntz said that it just seemed odd to him the way the fence is being shown. Apparently, the Applicant is just trying to give the Planning Board an idea that there would be a fence around the pool. Mrs. Wagner told the board members that the fence is actually going to be (more) around their property. The Village Engineer noted that the pool, and not the fence, is
at issue here. The fence is (would be) allowed, as long as it is code-compliant.
The Village Engineer asked about the filtration system being proposed. He noted that if the filtration system has a wastewater discharge, the discharge has to be piped to the sewer system or recycled to the pool. If the system being installed is a diatomaceous-type system, a separation tank must also be installed. Mr. Wagner said that his neighbor has suggested to him that they use a cartridge filter.
Chairman Kehoe asked if there were any other comments on this application, to which there were none.
Chairman Kehoe read aloud the draft resolution. He noted that, as mentioned earlier by the Village Engineer, there should be a condition that erosion & sedimentation control measures be placed on the Applicant’s plan(s). There should also be a condition pertaining to the pool filtration system. A pool filtration system with a backwash should either be discharged into the sewer or into a dry well, to the satisfaction of the Village Engineer.
Chairman Kehoe entertained a motion to approve this application with the conditions discussed tonight. The motion to approve was made by Ms. Allen, seconded by Mr. Sharma and carried by a vote of 5 to 0.
c) Franzoso Contracting, Inc. – 18 Beekman Avenue (Sec. 78.08 Blk. 6 Lot 49) – Application for a Minor Site Plan Approval for a New Single-Family Dwelling
d) MAF Realty Inc. – 16 Beekman Avenue (Sec. 78.08 Blk. 6 Lot 46) – Application for a Minor Site Plan Approval for a New Single-Family Dwelling
Mark Franzoso, owner of the two Beekman Avenue properties, was present.
Mr. Franzoso said that, as he sees it, these two minor site plan applications for new house construction are straightforward applications. Chairman Kehoe told Mr. Franzoso that the house construction aspect of these applications might be straightforward, but the situation with the existing retaining wall at the back of the two properties is not. Mr. Franzoso told the board members that, with respect to the existing retaining wall, he intends to replace this wall system before he digs his foundations for the two new houses.
The Village Engineer noted to Mr. Franzoso that the Planning Board’s minor site plan review process is in two parts: the first is the review of the site work and the second is the architectural review of the building(s). The Village Engineer stated that if he (Mr. Franzoso) intends to replace the retaining wall, the site work and details of the wall construction should be submitted to the Planning Board for review.
Mr. Franzoso noted to the board that, prior to the meeting tonight, he had shown the Village Engineer the materials that he is planning to use for the wall. The Village Engineer told Mr. Franzoso that he was unaware that Mr. Franzoso had actually selected a specific type of wall construction.
The Village Engineer stated that there are multiple items that would be required for a proper site plan submission. Firstly, the Village would ask that the Applicant relocate the utilities out of the root zone to save the large oak tree. Tree protection would be needed for this oak tree. The Village Engineer stated that erosion & sedimentation controls should be shown on the Applicant’s plan(s). The details on the new retaining wall should be submitted. He (the Village Engineer) would want to look at the retaining wall from an engineering perspective. There should be cross-sections submitted, which show the relationship between the retaining wall and the house foundation. One of the conditions of approval for the houses should be that as-built foundation plans be submitted.
The Village Engineer asked if the excavated soil would be left on site or taken off site, to which Mr. Franzoso replied that most of the excavated soil would be taken off site. There would be a small amount left for backfill purposes.
The Village Engineer referred to the existing wall on the Applicant’s site plan and stated that there probably should be a safety fence installed on this side of the wall.
The Village Engineer noted that the subject retaining wall extends the full width of the back of both properties and beyond. He pointed out that, later on, there could be issues with the two different property owners regarding the retaining wall. He asked Mr. Franzoso if the wall could be designed in such a way as to have a joint in the wall at the property line rather than it being a continuous structure. Mr. Franzoso said that he thinks that this would be difficult to do. The Village Engineer told those present that he has been searching in the property files for a building permit for the existing retaining wall. The original wall was built by the Sherwood Group. He has been unable to find any building permit. Mr. Franzoso stated that, with respect to the joint in the wall, they (the
Village Engineer and the Planning Board) are not going to want to see a seam in the new retaining wall. They are going to want a solid wall.
Mr. Sharma noted that there is a similar situation on Bungalow Road with a continuous retaining wall in the back of some of the properties. He asked the Applicant what kind of retaining wall he is proposing, to which Mr. Franzoso said that he is proposing concrete blocks with a stone design on the front.
The Village Engineer said that there are height limitations for retaining walls in the Village’s Zoning Code. He would check the Zoning Code to see exactly what these height limitations are.
The Village Engineer noted that it is not clear from the Applicant’s plan(s) that the Applicant intends to build a retaining wall. He reiterated that revised and/or new plans should be submitted on the wall construction. Mr. Franzoso noted that he had an engineer take a look at the existing wall. The engineer said that the wall was sound; however, he (Mr. Franzoso) is in favor of replacing the wall anyway. Mr. Luntz noted that the current plan says, “existing wood retaining wall.” There is no way, looking at this plan, that the Planning Board would know that the Applicant had any intention of replacing this wall.
The Village Engineer said that, as he understands it, the retaining wall starts at Lot #59 and runs down four or five lots. Mr. Franzoso said that he thought it ran all the way down to the end of the street. Chairman Kehoe asked if it went past the intersection with Olcott Avenue, to which Mr. Franzoso said, yes.
Chairman Kehoe said that Gemmola & McWilliams prepared the plot plan. He asked who would prepare the plans for the retaining wall. The Village Engineer said that the Applicant’s architect would look into it. The Applicant would not need full engineering details. It would be sufficient for the Planning Board to see some details that show that the retaining wall is being replaced.
Mr. Franzoso noted that he is not in favor of putting a new retaining wall in front of the existing wall. He realizes that this is one way of doing it. The Village Engineer asked what his concern is about putting the new wall in front of the old one, to which Mr. Franzoso replied that he just does not want to do it that way. It would take up a couple of feet of yard space. He is simply not comfortable leaving the old wall there. Mr. Luntz agreed with Mr. Franzoso that a better way of doing it would be to take the old wall down.
Anthony & Francine Mormile of 20 Beekman Avenue were present. Mr. Mormile said that their concern, and the reason they came to the meeting tonight, had to do with the retaining wall behind the Applicant’s property. It looked as if it were in relatively bad shape. They are pleased to learn tonight that the Applicant wants to remove it. Mr. Mormile stated that the wall is a continuous wall that also runs behind their house. Their retaining wall is buckling. They are concerned about what might happen to their wall when the retaining wall behind the Applicant’s property is taken down. Mr. Mormile said that they have hired an architect, Peter Helmes, to look into this matter. They would want some assurance tonight that they would be protected when the Applicant’s retaining wall is
removed. They would not want the structural integrity of their wall compromised in any way. The Village Engineer told the Applicant that he should have his architect, Ed Gemmola, look at the existing retaining wall and do whatever is necessary to shore up that end of the wood wall.
Mr. Franzoso asked if it would be possible to approve the actual buildings tonight even though the retaining wall plans have not been submitted yet. He wanted to try to shorten the application process as much as possible. Chairman Kehoe said that he, personally, does not have any comments on the house plans. Mr. Sharma asked if it would be possible for the Planning Board to act on the two houses and make the retaining wall a condition of the approval. Chairman Kehoe said that he thinks the retaining wall is an important issue, which the Planning Board should be looking at, to which Ms. Allen agreed.
Mr. Mormile asked if their architect, Mr. Helmes, could contact the Village Engineer with his findings about the retaining wall, to which the Village Engineer said that, indeed, he could. The Village Engineer suggested that Mr. Helmes could look at the Applicant’s revised plan(s) when they come in. He could do so before the next Planning Board meeting on September 12th. The Village Engineer told Mr. Franzoso that it would be helpful, time-wise, if he could give the Mormile’s his plan(s) for the retaining wall as soon as they are ready. Chairman Kehoe noted that, if the Applicant were ready to come back, the Planning Board would put this item on their agenda for the next regularly scheduled meeting to be held on Tuesday, September 12th.
e) Fernando Duce – 1307 Albany Post Road (Sec. 67.14 Blk. 3 Lot 9) – Application for a Preliminary Subdivision Approval
The Village Engineer told the board members that the property being subdivided is part of the original Duce Subdivision, which is shown on the first page of the Applicant’s plans. The lots behind the two lots presently being proposed were the new lots of the original subdivision. The lot currently being subdivided is the lot with the existing house from the first (original) subdivision. Chairman Kehoe asked if the original Duce Subdivision came before the Planning Board as a three-lot subdivision, to which the Village Engineer said that it did. The lot with the existing house on it was left as a two-acre lot. The Applicant, Fernando Duce, is now proposing to remove the existing house and garage and subdivide the property into two lots.
The Village Engineer stated that the Applicant intends to use the existing driveway off of Albany Post Road to access new Lot #2. Ms. Allen said that, as she understands it from the plan(s), the Applicant is proposing to put in a new driveway off of Albany Post Road to access new Lot #1.
The Village Engineer noted that the two new houses would use municipal (public) sewer and water main connections. He said, “It might be difficult to build them.” One house would have a system that utilizes a pump station; the other house would have a system that works by gravity flow. Chairman Kehoe asked if the proposed utility easement is off of the property, to which the Village Engineer said that it is. The Planning Board would want to see documentation of the easement agreement(s).
The Planning Board discussed the proposed new driveway for Lot #1. The board members expressed their concern about the amount of land disturbance for the new driveway. Chairman Kehoe said that the amount of disturbance to put in this new driveway parallel to Albany Post Road should be compared to that which is incurred using the existing driveway. The Village Engineer noted that this (the concept shown on the Applicant’s plan) is only one concept for a driveway on Lot #1. There might be other options with less land disturbance. The Village Engineer noted that Albany Post Road is a state road. He suggested that the Planning Board could ask the NYS Department of Transportation (DOT) for comments on using the existing driveway off of Albany Post Road for access to the two homes.
The Village Engineer referred to the Tree Schedule on Sheet 3 of the Applicant’s plans and stated that there should be a column entitled “[Trees] to be removed or saved.” Ms. Allen noted that there are trees missing in this Tree Schedule. There are more trees on the lot than have been identified in the table. These trees should be added to the Tree Schedule.
The Village Engineer told the board that he would be in touch with the Applicant regarding the issues discussed tonight. The Applicant should be prepared at the next meeting to address these issues. Chairman Kehoe brought up the matter of going on a future site visit. He suggested that, with respect to the timing of the site visit, it would probably be better to wait until the Applicant has had an opportunity to come to a meeting (first) to discuss the application.
4. APPROVAL OF MINUTES:
Approval of the minutes of the Tuesday, July 25, 2006 Planning Board meeting was adjourned until the meeting of Tuesday, September 12th.
There being no further business to come before the Board, the meeting was duly adjourned at 10:20 P.M.
WHEREAS, the Planning Board reviewed a Minor Site Plan application on Tuesday, August 22, 2006, for Dante Cretara, hereafter known as “the Applicant,” said property located at 10 Arlington Drive, and designated on the Tax Map of the Village of Croton-on-Hudson as Section 79.13 Block 4 Lot 7; and
WHEREAS, the proposal is for a new single-family dwelling; and
WHEREAS, under the requirements of Local Law 7 of 1977, the Planning Board has determined that there will be no adverse impacts resulting from the proposed application that cannot be properly mitigated.
NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Minor Site Plan application as shown on Dwg. SY-1entitled “Proposed Plot Plan;” Dwg. A-1 entitled “Proposed First Floor Plan;” Dwg. A-2 entitled “Proposed Second Floor Plan;” Dwg. A-3 entitled “Proposed Exterior Elevations [Front and Right Side];” and Dwg. A-4 entitled “Proposed Exterior Elevations [Rear and Left Side], prepared by Gemmola & McWilliams, LLP, Architects/Planners and dated August 16, 2006, and a survey entitled “Topographical Survey of Property Prepared for Dante Cretara and Ashley Cretara,” prepared by Thomas C. Merritts Land Surveyors, P.C., dated June 27, 2006, last revised August 3, 2006, be approved subject to the following conditions:
1. that construction milestones be established by the Village Engineer at which times inspections by the Village Engineer shall be performed prior to construction proceeding further.
2. that yard drains be installed in the rear of the property, to the satisfaction of the Village Engineer.
3. that erosion & sedimentation controls be placed on the plan(s).
4. that tree protection be placed on the pine trees located on or near the property line, prior to the commencement of construction.
In the event that this Minor Site Plan is not implemented within three (3) years of this date, this approval shall expire.
The Planning Board of the Village of
Croton-on-Hudson, New York
Chris Kehoe, Chairperson
Motion to approve by Mr. Andrews, seconded by Mr. Luntz and carried by a vote of 5 to 0.
Resolution accepted with the minutes of the meeting held on Tuesday, August 22, 2006.
WHEREAS, the Planning Board approved the Baltic Estates (Westwind Subdivision) on July 25, 1995; and
WHEREAS, each lot in the Westwind Subdivision had a building envelope defined for it, beyond which no construction could occur without approval of the Planning Board; and
WHEREAS, Gary & Tina Wagner, owners of Lot #1 in the Westwind Subdivision (101 Scenic Drive West – Sec. 67.10 Blk. 2 Lot 4) have requested an expansion of that lot’s building envelope for the purpose of building an in-ground swimming pool; and
WHEREAS, under the requirements of Local Law 7 of 1977, the Planning Board has determined that there will be no adverse impacts resulting from the proposed application that cannot be properly mitigated.
NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the modification of the building envelope on Lot #1, as shown on a plan entitled “Proposed Location of 18’ x 36’ In-ground Swimming Pool for Mr. & Mrs. Wagner at 101 Scenic Drive West, Croton-on-Hudson, NY,” prepared by Westfair Pools & Supply, Inc. and received by the Planning Board on August 17, 2006, and manufacturer’s specifications for the pool filtration and pump systems, received by the Planning Board on August 17, 2006, is hereby approved with the following conditions:
1. that erosion & sedimentation controls be placed on the plan(s).
2. that if the chosen pool filtration system has a waste water discharge, the discharge shall be piped to the sewer or other disposal system or recycled to the pool. If the filtration system is a diatomaceous-type system, a separation tank must also be installed.
Failure to implement this approval in three years will result in the expiration of this approval.
The Planning Board of the Village of
Croton-on-Hudson, New York
Chris Kehoe, Chairperson
Motion to approve by Ms. Allen, seconded by Mr. Sharma and carried by a vote of 5 to 0.
Resolution accepted with the minutes of the meeting held on Tuesday, August 22, 2006.