September 14, 2020
Attending: John Kincart, John Savoca, William LaScala, Rich Fon, Aaron Bock, Robert Garrigan
1. BJ’s Wholesale Club
The board renewed the special permit for outdoor display and sales for another five years. There were no complaints about the use.
2. Broad Pines/Prebeck subdivision, Granite Springs Road
(See Planning Board 8-10-2020.) The board amended the 1990 subdivision approval with the town taking the road widening strip, lot #7, and an agreement to provide access to lot #7. The Town Board will have to approve the agreement.
3. Sandvoss Minor Subdivision, Hanover Street
Without any discussion, the board approved the subdivision.
4. CVS, Commerce Street/Public Hearing
(See Planning Board 8-10-2020.) The board liked the revised plan that showed the new curb, plantings and bollards but wanted some changes made. Because the applicant wants to repave the lot this fall and the new curbs have to be installed before the paving can be done, the board closed the hearing and approved the amended site plan with the changes it wanted as conditions of approval.
The changes include installing more bollards so that a car cannot get between them in the space left for pedestrians to access the sidewalk; adjusting the location of the curbs in order to give the fire department access to a fire connection; once repaved, keeping the stripping at its current width (the current spaces are wider than required and in order to provide additional spaces, the applicant planned to restripe the lot with narrower but code compliant spaces); revise the plantings as recommended by ABACA; have the plan show a stripped fire lane in front of the plantings and include no parking signs in the plantings; and modify the lighting so that all the fixtures conform to the town code.
5. Par 3 golf course/public hearing
The applicant’s engineer advised the board that work had begun on some of the holes and that the work on the remaining holes would be completed by Thanksgiving. He said that five dead trees would have to be removed but when the issue of the 90 trees previously removed was brought to the engineer’s attention, he said that happened before he was hired. Parks Superintendent Jim Martorano said he wasn’t aware of the earlier tree cutting. The engineer said that a total of 0.25/acre would be disturbed and that 150 new trees and shrubs would be planted. The Planning Department has referred the site plan to the Conservation Board and Tree Conservation Advisory Commission.
The parking at the clubhouse will have 48 spaces with an additional 48 available on the auxiliary road parallel to Route 6. The applicant said that employees would be advised to park in the auxiliary spaces unless they were working at night. The applicant was advised that a parking plan was needed.
To meet the project’s septic approval, two seats at the club house restaurant had to be removed.
There was some confusion over whether there were any public comments; after the board was told that no one asked to speak, a person (the one writing this summary) sent a zoom chat message that she had registered to speak. But by then the board had adjourned the hearing until October 26 and advised the person that she could address the hearing at that time.
6. Nantucket Sound, Kear St.
Mr. Riina advised the board the mixed use plan that was originally scheduled for a public hearing was being withdrawn and that the applicant would submit a different plan at a later time. He showed a conceptual plan similar to an earlier proposal for a smaller one story building with two retail stores and a drive thru. The applicant is no longer considering any residential units. No reason was given for the change.
7. Taco Bell/ East Main Street, Mohegan Lake
The building would be on the vacant site at the corner of East Main Street and Mohegan Avenue. The 2,100 sf building will replace a 2,000 sf bank building that was approved as part of the original site plan but never built. (Note: the parcel was rezoned from office to commercial use in January, 2019.) In reviewing the initial plan, the board asked the applicant to soften the appearance of the sides of the buildings and consider more landscaping around the parking lot to “soften” the overall appearance. A Public Informational Hearing will be held October 26.
8. McDonalds/Route 202
(See Planning Board 11/18/2019.) The applicant wants to construct an addition to the rear of the existing building to be used for storage and food preparation and some adjustments to the traffic layout. There was some confusion over the changes that the applicant was highlighting and the changes that had already been approved in 2019 in an amended site plan. Mr. Fon asked the applicant to return with a side by side comparison of the 2019 approved plan and what is now being proposed.
9. Bellamy subdivision, 379 Hallocks Mill Road
(See Planning Board 6/22/2020.) The applicant returned with a plan showing a second driveway to serve a new house and explained that by cutting down some trees along the road and some grading, the sight distance on Hallocks Mill Road would be improved. His plan also includes regrading the driveway for the existing house, also to improve sight distance. When the board asked why a shared driveway couldn’t be used, the applicant said he did not want that option. The board, however, asked him to return with both a shared and separate driveway so it could better assess the sight distance issue.
The applicant also advised the board that the owner wants to keep the existing cottage that has a kitchen and bathroom and may use it either as an office or for an accessory apartment. The board will refer the application to the Building Department to see if the cottage is legal.
The board plans a site visit.
10. CubeSmart Self Storage, Bank Street (Former Toys R Us)
The applicant showed a rendering of the existing 45,000 sq ft building with additions on either side totaling 19,000 sf. It was noted that when the plan was initially discussed at the Town Board, there was no mention of any addition. Also, at the presentation to the Town Board, it was said that entry to the units would be from inside the building. However, the rendering showed roll up doors on the two side additions.
The board liked the overall plan, but Mr. Tegeder asked that something be done to “soften” the rear of the building facing Route 6, and also to possibly consider some shrubs between the building and trees. Mr. DeVito advised the board that the trees, which are on DOT right-of-way, had not been pruned but that only vines were removed.
The applicant will likely return to the October 5 work session and a Public Informational Hearing will be held on October 26. The applicant would like to be in the building in January.
11. Lowes, Pad “A.”
Mr. Riina sowed the latest plan which he said addressed the tenants’ needs. He was not at liberty to identify the tenants except to say that one would be a grocer.
Mr. Tegeder asked the applicant to make changes to the rear of the building facing Route 202, possibly relocating the dumpsters that would be enclosed with a chain link fence, adding, “it needs plenty of work” The landscape architect reviewed the landscape plan.
Michael Grace, the applicant’s attorney, advised the board that the applicant would like to get started on the retaining wall at the western side of the parcel while the site plan was still being reviewed. He suggested, and the board agreed, to amend the original site plan for the entire site to include the retaining wall. The applicant will work out the details with Mr. Tegeder and likely return to the board on October 5.
12. Hilltop Hanover Subdivision, White Horse Lane
(See Planning Board 8/10/2020.) Mr. Riina walked the board through how he has addressed the issues raised at the previous meeting. A split rail fence was noted on the plan along the conservation easement. A tree permit is not needed because the only trees to be cut are in the septic field location. The board was concerned about el3vations and the amount of fill that was going to be used and asked the applicant to return on October 5 with more information about grading and elevations.
13. K&P Celebrations, 1950 East Main Street, Mohegan Lake
The applicant wishes to expand its current catering business and utilize the space formerly used by Tea Temptations to hold private events for 50-60 people in the 48 seat space. The issue was how much parking was needed. The applicant went through the history of the parking calculations when Tea Temptations and Hunan House were approved and gave the board current parking counts for the current tenants. The board was satisfied that there was adequate parking for this new use and will draft an approval resolution,.
14. 1538 Jacob Road, Town Board referral for SWPPP.
This is lot #27, a vacant lot in the previously approved Fox Den subdivision. The applicant needs a stormwater permit because of the amount of grading to be done. It was agreed that as the lot was part of an approved subdivision that the Planning Board should approve the permit request. A memo to that effect will be sent to the Town Board. The applicant is in the process of doing a tree survey.
15. Battery Storage and Solar Law/Town Board referrals
Mr. Tegeder advised the board that although it had previously commented on both pieces of legislation, what was needed now was for the board to review the Environmental Assessment Forms for both pieces of legislation. The board had no issue with the EAFs and the will send memos to the Town Board saying it has no planning issues with the legislation other than what was included in its earlier memos.
Note: The next Planning Board meeting will be October 5.