Citizens for an Informed Yorktown


Planning Board

April 22, 2013


Attending: Richard Fon, John Flynn, John Savoca, Ann Kutter, Darlene Rivera


1. Fieldstone Manor

In an item not on the agenda, Mr. Riina advised the Board that because the DEC objected to one lot that encroached into the wetland buffer, he has prepared a revised site plan that eliminates some of the courtyard concept that the Board had previously expressed support for.  The issue now becomes whether the client and the Town want to press for the better site plan or not delay the project and move ahead. The revised plan has the ability to provide additional mitigation to offset the buffer disturbance, but according to Mr. Riina, the DEC’s first priority is “no intrusion.”


In the meantime, the application for a revised flexibility authorization will be sent to the Town Board. It was not clear whether this request had to be made by the applicant or the Planning Board.


2. Hilltop Associates

A revised plan for 2 lots was submitted that is based on the previously granted variances. However, Mr. Flynn and Mr. Tegeder expressed the opinion that the two remaining lots could be better situated now that the third lot was not going to be used as a building lot. For the applicant, the issue became one of not wanting to make any significant changes to the revised plan that would trigger another DEP review which would delay the approval further.  The applicant also wants to keep a third lot, noted on the plan as “not a building lot,” in the event the site is sewered and the lot can be developed.


The Board will consider the revised plan as an amendment to the already approved preliminary plat. This will give the applicant time to” tweak” the 2 lots and return to the Board.


3. Hudson Valley Islamic Center

The applicant was before the Board to review “as built” changes to the site plan that were not reflected in the amended site plan that was approved in 20111. The changes included minor adjustments in the layout of the recreation field, changes that the Board did not seem to have a problem with, as well as the installation of outdoor lighting that was not included in the 2011 approval, an issue the Board did have problems with.  The lighting issue may have come to the Board’s attention in response to a complaint from a neighbor on Strawberry Road.


According to Mr. Riina, the applicant’s engineer, some of the lighting does not conform to the Town’s code. The applicant’s attorney explained that the lights for the recreation field that borders Strawberry Road were only used on Friday nights and that the teams were advised to leave between 10:30 and 10:45 pm. He also reviewed the history of seven complaint calls to the police department and explained that all but one resulted in the police not finding any issue. The seventh call dealt with lights being on a few minutes after 11pm.


The applicant was asked to return to the Board with more details regarding the lighting.


4. Creative Living (Navajo Fields)

The Board went into a closed excessive session to discuss the application.


When the open session resumed, Mr. Riina presented the Board with a revised plan (that he said had been worked out in consultation with Mr. Tegeder) that showed only the area for the single dome and the second field remaining as covered “greenhouses.” The current application would be only for the Phase I single dome.


Mr. Capellini explained that because the dome will need both side yard and height variances from the ZBA, he was anxious that the Planning Board start the process and refer the application to the ZBA that night in order to meet a tight schedule that would allow the dome to be up by November.  Once the applicant receives approvals, it will take about one and half months to erect the dome—which would only be used from November to the end of March. The applicant will also have to get DEC approval and Mr. Riina stated that that could take 60 days at a minimum. The Board agreed to refer the application to the ZBA. (Note:  The variance application is on the ZBA agenda for April 25. The agenda was published on April 23.)


In other issues, Mr. Fon asked about what provisions were being made for toilet facilities. In response, when the applicant said he would continue to rely on porto sans, Mr. Fon asked how many would be required and questioned the use of “outhouses” in the winter. Mr. Capellini said he hadn’t been told that this was an issue. Mr. Fon also asked about ADA compliance.


The Board also referred the application to the building inspector for a determination of whether the applicant is a not-for-profit or profit making entity.  (The designation relates to whether or not the site can or should continue as an “as of right” permitted use in a residential zone or whether the site should be rezoned for commercial recreation use.)  Depending on the findings of the building inspector, the issue may also go to the ZBA for a further interpretation.


There were also questions about the date and content of the latest Environmental Assessment Form (EAF) and whether it included sufficient information about the long term impacts of the project and whether there is a SEQRA segmentation issue.


Locations for proposed balloon tests to assess the impact of the dome’s height were discussed. The tests will be coordinated with the ZBA’s review.


A public informational hearing on the application will likely be advertised for May 20th.


5. Lake Osceola Realty

There was a short discussion about some changes that had to be made to the approving resolution relating to easements and whether or not the Town Board had to “approve” the easements, or only  had to “accept” them in order for the supervisor to sign the document.


Subject to the town attorney’s approval of the resolution language, the decision statement may be ready to be voted on in May.


6. Staples Plaza, Self Storage

The intended tenant is now Extra Space Storage, replacing Planet Storage.


The applicant’s engineer showed a revised plan that extends the entrance island initio the shopping center and the location of three signs, each of which has been reduced in size ( one sign will be on the Staples building) and the addition of more dumpsters at various locations. 


The Board continued to express concern over long term maintenance issues for the center and will to consider adding some enforcement mechanism in its approval resolution.  Talking about the future improvements being planned for Route 202, Mr. Fon talked about the overall need for stronger enforcement of maintenance issues.


Two neighbors expressed concern about the ongoing night time noise from cleaning crews and garbage trucks and the engineer said that there are ongoing discussions with management in an effort to have the crews revise their schedules.


A public hearing will be held in May, although the applicant has to return to ABACA for possible modifications to the plan needed to accommodate the new tenant.


7. BJ’s Propane Facility

The Board reviewed a revised site plan that showed the 36’ x 36’ facility in the same location as previously discussed, but surrounded by bollards, a 3-sided 6” high curb, and green vinyl fencing.  The applicant also showed a graphic of how the delivery trucks could circulate around the facility to enter and leave the loading dock area. The details of a truck survey indicating the number of truck trips will be forthcoming at a later meeting.


Mr. Flynn expressed concern about the facility’s planned location so close to the truck loading docks, noting that propane fires aren’t put out but are left to burn until all the gas is spent.


An attorney for the owner of Yorktown Beer & Soda asked that BJ’s be required to put its tanks underground as his client was required to do in 1997. In response, Mr. Tegeder noted that in 1997, the requirement took into consideration the location of the tanks in the downtown area and that each new request should be viewed individually. A BJ’s representative said that the company had already begun considering the possibility of burying the tanks, although he reiterated that the current plan met all code requirements. The company will also be meeting with the Fire Advisory Board later this week.


Ms. Kutter noted the need for either BJ’s or the shopping center (the two sites are separately owned) to do a better job of cleaning up litter in front of the center along Route 202. 


8. Yorktown Farms

The Board reviewed changes to the approved subdivision plan relating to two specific lots.   (When the plan was approved several years ago, the Board retained oversight of how some lots were to be developed, e.g., the placement of the house and driveway.)


Because the Board had concerns about some of the proposed changes, Planning Department staff will conduct a site visit and report back to the Board.


9. Winery wetlands permit

On a referral from the Town Board, the Planning Board expressed frustration that the required site plan improvements had not yet been made. Dan Ciarcia, the applicant’s engineer, explained that the work could not be done until the applicant obtained a town wetlands permit (the applicant already has a DEC wetlands permit), something that should have been done last October with the Town Board approved the rezoning.  Noting that the Winery’s Temporary Certificate of Occupancy will expire in June, Mr. Fon noted that there wasn’t much time for the applicant to complete the work although he thought it could be “banged out” quickly.