Questioning the wisdom of rezoning the New Paltz business district

One of the other hearings conducted at the August 11 New Paltz Village Board meeting was about the law to make the B-1 district into B-2, and it finally received some input. Property and business owner Anton Stewart fears that the switch could lead to over-developing of Main Street, as projects in a B-2 zone can have up to 85% lot coverage. Stewart’s property at 180 Main Street gets a lot of runoff from uphill development, and the former royal engineer is concerned that this would become a more common issue in the village as a result of this change. Stewart and wife Lisa own the Awareness Shop, and operate a church on the same property, the rites of which would be “overshadowed by a roof deck” at 184 Main Street if a proposal to build a boutique hotel there is ever approved. That was not a concern due to the large number of variances required, but Stewart now understands that this rezoning would make the project a very real possibility, going so far as to say that it almost feels like that was the entire point of this change was to allow that particular project to be moved forward.