Letter: Cabin resort project is too much for Gardiner

There is currently a proposal before the Gardiner Planning Board to build eco-cabins on a ridge above the Shawangunk Kill just west of the Tuthilltown Gristmill. This photo, taken last spring, shows an old sluiceway, which runs along the Kill in the vicinity of the site. (File photo by Lauren Thomas)

The Heartwood Project in Gardiner will be on 141 acres with a restaurant, an event barn, swimming pools, event courts, a gym, bocce courts, a 165-car parking lot, 71 luxury cabins and 40 eco cabins, all with full bathrooms. The water system will include two drilled wells with peak water usage of 12,600 gallons per day. This facility will accommodate 166 guests and close to 300 visitors per day. The sewage facility will provide four separate septic systems. Where the water will go after that will probably be in the Wallkill River, sooner or later. Also, the 12,600 gallons of water per day will affect wells near the resort.

Now the problem is — sooner or later this resort can and will affect the Gardiner taxpayers. Another problem is when you ask certain questions about this project you get no answers or you get an, “I don’t know” answer about the water system, about the sewage system, about the roads, who is going to plow the snow in the winter?, are they going to have their own security system, are they going to have their own medical system? Because with hundreds of people per day (the good, the bad and the ugly) you will surely have problems. And, it will also affect the hamlet of Gardiner with all these cars and people. With 200-300 people per day, not counting their families, downtown Gardiner will be like the Port Authority in New York City with people all over the sidewalk, people trying to get to the post office, which should not be where it is now, and the cars and trucks that come around the bend. Someone will get killed or surely get hurt.


The planning of this project should never have gone before any of the boards before it was put on the ballot in November for people to vote on it. Not certain people on the town boards who will surely profit by the Heartwood Project, especially one former leader of the town board, who, in my opinion, is still running Gardiner. If this project goes through, it will be like the T Brothers project from which I have seen Gardiner vehicles going in and out. People of Gardiner, we have to stop this before we have to pay for this big time. That is all for now. There will be more on the subject later. Wake up taxpayers.

Henry V. Tortora

There are 8 comments

  1. Stick to Truth and Facts, Please

    This letter is yet another over-reaction to a plan in our area.
    A: Tourism is our Number 1 asset and our Number 1 business, job
    and revenue generator.
    B: “Downtown Gardiner” at the moment does not offer much, save a couple of spots to
    grab beer and buy really delicious sandwiches…and truth is, those visitors
    definitely won’t be going to the Post Office, they WILL actually stay at the resort as
    sort of ‘home base’ and actually be going on day trips within a 25-35 mile radius…to
    hike Mohonk, swim Minnewaska, rock climb, do day trips into Downtown New Paltz,
    shop in our farm markets, antique stores, visit our micro-breweries and food-tourism
    businesses in Accord, Kerhonkson, Stone Ridge and Kingston.

    The irrational hysteria of this letter is a bit along the lines of how the new Hampton Inn
    in New Paltz was going to be the literal end of the world and the town would be paralyzed…guess what…didn’t happen. No increase in traffic, no drain on services, I pass it every single day and it actually stands as the most attractive new build in New Paltz in the past two-years, and everything is under control and just fine.

    Let’s not be manic and hysterical on this. 90% of those in Gardiner actually stand to see their taxes go down and those with businesses see their revenue go up. Not a bad deal.

    1. H. Finn

      Digestive toilets. On rafts floating in the waterway. There would still be enough room for canoes to pass and get to the post office

  2. Why no names?

    Why are the cowards who are so supportive of this project afraid to say who they are. Put your names on your comments if you feel so strongly. Is it that you don’t want the readers will find out that you are the ones who will profit from this project? It seems that this is exactly the case, as you are so versed in the exact facts and talking points for the project. So, who are you and what is your connection ($) with this plan?

    1. Ralph Erenzo

      So, where’s your name? Where are the names of those who monitor this page? Why is every posting on the so-called Friends of Gardiner (“FOG”, an appropriate acronym) website without the name of the poster? Who are you and what is your connection (NIMBY) to the opposition? If you’re going to cast stones, stay away from glass houses.

      1. Your Local Assessor

        The Section, Block and Lot number is missing from the Fact Sheet. That can never r be changed and nobody has spit it out yet. Owners names change, tax rates change but never the S B L?
        in new waltz, which Gardner was once a part of, the village doesn’t even say on their website who the members of that planning board are. So why bother.
        In fact, I’ve signed my name three times to three different posts, and the paper won’t print my name. I don’t know whose responsible for that
        Ways the SBL

  3. Steven L Fornal

    Having read the Heartwood fact sheet I’d have to say the principals seem to be offering a wonderful tourist destination that will be virtually impact free. The provisions for handling the impacts are impressive. They are going through the process as they should and seem to be fully willing to comply with all applicable regulations.

    Again, the owners appear to be offering a project that can only benefit the town of Gardiner.

  4. Ralph Erenzo

    Why is it those opposed to this project resort to name calling, exaggeration and rumors? “Why no names?” where is your name? All the project information is readily available on the Town website. And speaking of cowardly behavior, why don’t you list the names of those of us who support this addition to the Town of Gardiner you you are accusing of benefiting financially from this project? If you have a accusation to make, stand up, say your name, and make it. Mr. Tortola brazenly implies profiteering by Town Officials, ex-Town Officials, residents who believe the project has merit and should be permitted to proceed. Mr. Tortola’s letter is rife with exaggeration, unsupported claims and incorrect data. He spreads accusation as though it was manure. That kind of manure stinks up the whole Town. “Why no names?” who are YOU. I’m Ralph Erenzo.

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