Appeals court backs Lori Drive connection

A controversial subdivision and road connection to Lori Drive in Niskayuna got closer to reality tod
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A controversial subdivision and road connection to Lori Drive in Niskayuna got closer to reality today as the state Appellate Division backed an order for the project to go ahead.

The ruling upheld a lower court finding that Schenectady County’s decision to deny required permits to the Cerone Paulsen development was arbitrary and capricious.

Developer attorney Jonathan P. Harvey this afternoon claimed victory in the lengthy fight to get the development built.

“The court is saying the county is wrong,” Harvey said. “We can connect to Lori Drive and build it. I never could understand, frankly, why the county took the position they did.”

Schenectady County Attorney Christopher Gardner could not be immediately reached for comment.

But the county has 30 days to decide whether to ask for the case to be heard by the state Court of Appeals. There would be no guarantee that the appeal would be heard, Harvey noted.

The town wanted Lori Drive connected with the new Cerone Paulsen subdivision and the subdivision connected to Lisha Kill Road.

Lori Drive residents have been flatly against the connection, arguing their now-quiet drive would see a marked increase in traffic in the form of cut-throughs.

County officials halted the plan in 2005 after determining the intersection of the subdivision and Lisha Kill Road would be unsafe.

A state Supreme Court judge in 2006 found that decision to be arbitrary and not based in data. The county appealed, leading to today’s ruling.

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