Schenectady County

Niskayuna homeowners demand sidewalk

Issue at standstill as town pursues developer in court

A Niskayuna homeowners association president is calling for the town to put down a long-overdue sidewalk, a sidewalk a developer was supposed to build, but never did.

James F. Sefcik, president of the Hummingbird Manor Homeowners Association, calls the lack of a sidewalk along a section of Consaul Road a safety issue for pedestrians wishing to get to the Hannaford, Key Bank or Stewart’s.

Town Supervisor Joe Landry, however, says the town is pursuing the developer in court, filing a lawsuit last year for $250,000 and recently winning a default judgment after the developer failed to show for court.

“We recently got a default judgment against developer and we’re in the process of trying to enforce that judgment,” Landry said.

That must be seen through before other options are considered, Landry said.

Sefcik, though, said the town shouldn’t wait, but should build the sidewalk now and collect on the funds later.

“It’s dangerous. Somebody’s going to get hurt, if not killed,” Sefcik said.

Many in the Hummingbird Manor development are older and walk to the nearby Hannaford. But that’s made difficult, if not impossible, without a sidewalk, especially in the wintertime.

Sefcik made his concerns known to the board in a letter he sent earlier this month.

The section at issue is on the north side of Consaul Road, between Oakmont Street and a dead-end section of sidewalk leading out of the Hannaford Plaza.

Landry, though, said the town is working on the problem. The town filed a lawsuit in October 2001 against CW Custom Builders and four individuals connected to the company.

The lawsuit cites the history of the project, which got its initial approvals in 2001. It was then deemed substantially complete by July 2008.

As conditions on the initial approvals though, were the sidewalk as well as another agreement to upgrade the town’s Becker Street wastewater pump station. Neither was completed, according to the suit.

Landry said the town must file its default judgment in the coming weeks. Then a hearing would be held to determine the final amount of the judgment.

The town would then move to enforce it.

If those efforts prove unsuccessful, then Landry said the Town Board would have to decide whether to put the sidewalk in the town’s capital project plans. The town, though, is not to that point yet.

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