Plans for the use of that large yellow commercial building between Kings Highway and the New York State Thruway have undergone a number of changes: warehousing, sales, and – in the plan submitted to the Saugerties town planning board on September 20, a truck repair center.
The new plan, described by surveyor Dan McCarthy, represents a return of the building, on a 3.3-acre site, to its earlier purpose, a diesel repair shop. “In the late 1980s, a firm called Atlantic Diesel bought this building from another owner, and from this point until 2015, when Mancuso bought it, it was used as a truck repair building, and they did transmission work, they did truck repairs, and we’re not talking about pickup trucks. They did tractor-trailers,” said McCarthy.
The latest plan is to return the building to truck repairs, the surveyor said. “It’s not for sales, so we’re not bringing in Joe Public.”
The company, Skyway Road Service Corporation, is based in The Bronx, but is looking for a location near the Thruway, as it has contracts to handle repairs along that road, McCarthy said. Repairs would be made by the roadside or inside the building. No work would be done outdoors on the property.
Board chairman Howard Post noted that plans based on the assumption that the property was to be used as a warehouse had been submitted to the county planning board. The change of use could lead the county board to different conclusions than it has already expressed.
Board vice chairman Bill Creen suggested that it made sense to review the lighting on the site, which may be needed to help get the trucks into the facility. The lighting consists of a mix of Wal Pak lights, which direct the beams downward, incandescent lights over the loading dock, and angled spotlights over the entrances.
Board member Paul Andreassen asked whether McCarthy’s client could lose the potential customer if the board did not act soon. “He [the customer] is not going to wait for months,” McCarthy replied.
The previous operation, Atlantic Diesel, brought engines and transmissions into the shop for rebuilding, but did not bring in trucks, said alternate board member Dan Ellsworth. “They [transmissions] were brought in on pallets,” he said.
To consider it as an ongoing and therefore permitted use, the building owner would have to establish that it had been used as a repair shop within the recent past. The board voted to submit the new plans to the county planning board for review.