May 20, 2013
Attending: Ann Kutter, John Savoca, John Flynn, John Kincart, Richard Fon, Darlene Rivera
(Special note: CIY was not able to attend the meeting. The following comments are based on the Board’s draft minutes.)
1. Staples Plaza-Self Storage
The Board approved the amended site plan, stormwater pollution prevention plan, tree permit, and special use permit for a self-storage facility. The resolution included limitations on idling in the rear and side of the shopping center. The lighting fixures were also lowered.
2. Creative Living Development (Navajo Fields) Public Informational Hearing
Site engineer Joe Riina and representatives of the company that manfacturers the dome gave a presentation. (For more details about the dome, see the summary below of the May 23 ZBA hearing.)
To facilitate construction of the 77,000 square foot dome and provide emergency access, a road will be constructed around the dome. This will require the applicant to apply for another wetland permit. The existing two greenhouse structures will remain on the north field and will be used as training facilities for batting and pitching, although Mr. Riina stated that they would be removed in the future.
In response to a memo from the Building Department noting that the site still had two violations, one of which was the lack of a site plan, Mr. Tegeder explained that the site plan was currently before the Planning Board for approval. Mr. Riina stated the EAF (Environmental Assessment Form) is currently being updated, and in response to Mr. Flynn’s question, he said he would investigate the site plan’s impact on the adjacent Tonndorf site.
According to the dome manufacturer, after obtaining site plan approval, it will take 2-4 weeks for the Building Department to review the plans, and from start to finish, a total of about 90 days to complete the project. Mr. Fon stated to have the dome in place by November, the applicant would need approval by August 1; the manufacturer stated that is cutting it short due to the manufacturing schedule. The applicant will also need a DEC wetlands permit.
In response to questions from Mr. Fon, it was stated that the dome will have both interior and exterior lavatories.
Mr. Fon read a letter from Susan Siegel including a request for the Board to verify the applicant’s not-for-profit status as it relates to the zoning ordinance and whether the "park" is a private or commercial operation.
The hearing was closed.
Zoning Board of Appeals, May 23, 2013
Public hearing on height and side yard variance application
Site engineer Joe Riina and representatives of the company that manfacturers the dome and related mecanical equipment gave a presentation about the dome, including a viewshed analysis that showed the extent to which the dome would be visible from different locations ranging up to approximately 1,800 feet from the dome. Because the Navajo site is in a valley, portions of the dome will be visible from most locations . A slide show indicated that much of the dome would not be seen through existing tree lines.
The dome is made of fire retardant material that is translucent. During the daytime, the interior will be lit by natural light. In the evenng, the dome will be more visible because of the interior lighting. In response to a question from ZBA members, it was stated that the lights would typically be turned off by 11pm although the activities might end around 10pm. Although the interior lit dome will be visible at night, representatives stated it would not “light up the sky.” The current grass field will be replaced with artifical turf, and a new stormwater system installed under the turf. A backup generator, blowers, ventilation, air conditioning and heating units, and the unit that generates the air pressure that holds up the dome will be located inside the dome. The dome manufacturers were confident that the noise from the equipment would meet code and not be offensive; some of the equipment will run 24/7. A primary power source will be brought to the site. The representatives assured the ZBA that after people’s perceptions about the dome were addressed, they would see that the dome would be a “good neighbor.”
The dome representatives assured the ZBA that the structure can handle snow. The dome includes emergency exits and a special door to provide access for emergency vehicles. The dome will be anchored to the ground.
There will be limited space for observers along the side walls of the dome.
A Planning Board memo was read indicating that the Board had no problem with the requested height variance.
Several members of the public spoke in support of the dome, citing the benefits of having a year-round sports facility.
The hearing was adjourned, pending submission of the Enviromental Assessment Form.
3. Yorktown Farms
The Board reviewed changes in the subdivsion plan for four lots based on a meeting Mr. Circia had with Planning staff.