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Planning Board Minutes 02/27/07



A regular meeting of the Planning Board of the Village of Croton-on-Hudson, New York was held on Tuesday, February 27, 2007 in the Municipal Building.

MEMBERS PRESENT:        Chris Kehoe, Chairman
                                Fran Allen
                                Robert Luntz
                                Deven Sharma

                ABSENT: Vincent Andrews
                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.


*    Holy Name of Mary Church – 110 Grand Street (Sec. 78.08 Blk. 7 Lot 2) – Application for an Amended Site Plan to Construct a Handicap Ramp & New Stairs

Walter Hauser of Kaeyer, Garment & Davidson Architects & Engineers, PC, architectural firm representing the Applicant, and Cheryl Comitto from the Church of the Holy Name of Mary were present.

Mr. Hauser said that his firm is working with the Church to renovate the Parish Center building.  The Parish Center was constructed in the late 1950’s.  The interior of the building is showing signs of wear. The Church would like to do some upgrades to the interior space(s).  As part of this project, the second and third floors would be renovated mostly to create office space and space for the Montessorri School.  Mr. Hauser stated that the Applicant is proposing the installation of a handicap lift to provide handicap access to the second and third floors from the main entry lobby on Grand Street.  

Mr. Hauser showed the board members a colored rendering of the front of the Parish Center building.  He told the board that the Applicant is before the Planning Board tonight for the proposed exterior renovations, which would include the installation of a handicap ramp and new steps (stairs) at the main entrance.   Mr. Hauser referred the Planning Board to the Applicant’s elevation plan showing the facade of the building. He stated that this proposal would also include the replacement of the doors at the front entrance with two sets of double doors.  

Mr. Sharma asked where the steps would be in relation to the property line, to which Mr. Hauser said that the steps would be approximately 16 feet from the property line.  

Mr. Luntz referred to the exterior elevation plan showing the façade of the building.  He asked if the retaining wall, in the area where the handicap ramp would be located, would be composed of blocks or brick, to which Mr. Hauser said that the retaining wall would be made of a Unilock product, which is a manmade stone.  Mr. Hauser said that the existing slate-topped stairs would be replaced with concrete stairs.  Both the stairs and landing would be made of concrete.  Mr. Hauser noted again that the three single doors in the front would be replaced by two sets of double doors.

Mr. Hauser noted to the Planning Board that the signage on the front entrance is going to change “in syntax only.”  The sign would read “Parish Center.”  Mr. Hauser said that the existing facia would be repaired and the overhang repainted.  The Village Engineer asked if the signage would remain in the same location above the doors on the building façade, to which Mr. Hauser said that it would.

Mr. Luntz asked what the material of the “storefront” is going to be, to which Mr. Hauser said that it would be aluminum.

The Village Engineer told the board members that he has received from this Applicant an application for a building permit, which incorporates both the interior and exterior renovations.  The Village Engineer said that he could issue the permit for the interior renovations; however, he could not issue the permit for the exterior renovations until such time as the Planning Board approves the amended site plan.  The Village Engineer suggested the following scenario to expedite the process for the Applicant.  The Village Engineer would approve the building permit for the interior changes only.  He would circle, on the Applicant’s building plans, the items that require approval by the Planning Board.  Once this approval has been granted, the Village Engineer would sign off on these items.  The Applicant could, then, begin the exterior work without having to submit a new application for a building permit.  

Chairman Kehoe noted that since this is an application for an amended site plan, a public hearing is required.  

The Village Engineer asked the Applicant’s architect about the walkway to the handicap ramp.  Mr. Hauser said that the walkway to the ramp, which is situated on the side of the building, would be brand new.  The intention would be to tie this new walkway into the existing walkway that leads to the courtyard.  The courtyard is situated in the back between the Parish Center and the Church.  Mr. Hauser noted that “Phase 2” of the renovation project would be upgrades to the courtyard.  The Applicant’s idea is that it (the new walkway) would tie in nicely to the future work being proposed for the courtyard.  Mr. Hauser noted further that the trees in between the two buildings would be preserved.

Chairman Kehoe asked if there were any other comments/questions on this application, to which there were none.

Chairman Kehoe suggested that the Planning Board could schedule the public hearing on this application.  The Planning Board scheduled the public hearing for the second meeting in March.


*   The Village Engineer noted to the board members that he spoke with the chairman of the Conservation Advisory Council (CAC), Joe Biber, about the tree on the Murray property on Wells Avenue.  The Village Engineer explained to Mr. Biber that the Planning Board made it a condition of their approval that this tree be catalogued by the CAC both before and after its removal.  Mr. Biber told the Village Engineer that he would discuss this matter with the other members at the upcoming CAC meeting.  He (Mr. Biber) would suggest, however, that, in the future, the Planning Board should have the Applicant hire a professional arborist to do the cataloguing of the trees (and the subsequent report).  He thought it might be difficult for the members of the CAC to carry out this task, given their schedules.  Mr. Biber would let the Village Engineer know the outcome of the CAC meeting.

*   Trustee Gallelli told the board members that the Bicycle and Pedestrian Committee are having their second outreach session at 7:30 PM tomorrow night (Wednesday night). She noted to the Planning Board that the Committee has developed a computer database of the areas in the Village that they feel need attention.  

*    Chairman Kehoe told the Planning Board that it is his understanding the Village has purchased the Katz property at the intersection of Maple Street and Municipal Place.  The property is 2.4 acres in size.  

Trustee Gallelli stated that this piece of property is situated in one of the gateways to the Village.  There are no immediate plans of developing the property.  Trustee Gallelli said that owning this piece of property, along with the property that formerly housed the skate board park, gives the Village some leverage in the future development of this important gateway area.

4.         ADJOURNMENT:

There being no further business to come before the Board, the meeting was duly adjourned at 8:20 P.M.


Sylvia Mills