The proposed construction of a 156-unit apartment complex was met with much opposition from Glenville residents at the Town Board’s regular meeting Wednesday night.
Before the public had a chance to comment, the president and CEO of Maddalone and Associates, Chris Maddalone, gave a presentation about the details of the proposed project.
In 2006, the company purchased about 25 acres of land off Route 50 between Woodruff Drive and Edmel Road up to Indian Meadows Park.
On Monday, Maddalone said he designed an “active community apartment complex” for 16 acres of the space — four acres for the building and the rest to be used as greenspace.
Wednesday night, Maddalone highlighted the benefits of the project to the board, including paying to extend the sewer system down Route 50, a $1 million value, which town Supervisor Chris Koetzle said has been a priority for some time.
“The construction of the sewer system up Route 50 to the site would be strictly paid out of the pocket of Maddalone & Associates at no cost to the town,” Maddalone said at the meeting. “A direct access road would be constructed so residential areas would remain undisturbed.”
But when the floor was opened to the public for comment, more than a dozen residents, most of whom live on Woodruff Drive and surrounding streets, rejected Maddalone’s proposed apartment complex.
“This will increase the amount of cars in that area one and a half times,” said Peter Miranda, a resident of Woodruff Drive. “When I look in my backyard, I don’t want to see apartments. Right now, I see a beautiful house. Let’s keep it that way, because this area is not designed for this kind of development.”
Craig Pangburn, a resident of Englehart Drive off of Woodruff, said his family purchased a house in that area several decades ago for a reason.
“It’s in a beautiful, residential zone and is a great place to raise children,” Pangburn said. “Building 156 apartments in a single-family zone shouldn’t even get this far. Zoning is put in place for a reason, and the offer to extend the sewers is just hanging a carrot in front of the board.
“Don’t ruin our town by changing single-family residential zones, and do what’s right for the whole for Glenville,” he said.
During applause after one resident spoke, a man in the audience shouted, “Chris [Maddalone], go somewhere else! We just don’t want you here.”
Leanne McCarty, of Glenville, said she doesn’t object to progress or change unless it hurts people or goes against the rules.
“This proposal does both,” she said. “It hurts not just our neighborhood, but all neighborhoods in Glenville because it will set a precedent. The next builder who comes in and sees the development will say, ‘Well, he did it on Woodruff, so why can’t we?’ ”
“I’m against it, totally,” said Lilly LoBaido, also a resident of Englehart Drive. “We’re looking to the town to do the right thing because we can’t do it, so you need to take care of us.”
During his presentation, Maddalone discussed the tax benefit the project would provide the town and the amenities the complex would have, including a community building, tennis courts, a putting green, a nature trail that would connect to the park, a fishing pond and other items.
So far, the project has been submitted to the town Planning Board, and the Town Board agreed to discuss the proposal and a decision at its Dec. 9 work session.
On Monday, Koetzle said if the project were to go forward, the town would have to implement a zone change to allow for multiple-family dwellings in what is now a single-family neighborhood.
Instead, the town may consider a Planned Development District, which would allow the board to look at the zoning for the project and the individual parcel of land.
“ … I’m going to want to see review by our third-party engineer to make sure the infrastructure will be up to town standards,” Councilman James Martin said after Maddalone’s presentation. “I want to see a traffic study thoroughly done on the impacts of the adjoining intersections and understand how it will work. Those are the early signs I’m going to be looking for.”
Maddalone did not return calls after the meeting for comment.
“So far, the residents have been clear,” Koetzle said. “We should give the applicant an opportunity on Dec. 9, when residents will have an opportunity again to discuss their feelings. We’ll see what the board decides then.”
Reach Gazette reporter Kate Seckinger at 395-3113, [email protected] or @KateSeckinger on Twitter.