Former College Diner inches forward to becoming the Hudson Valley Credit Union

Former College Diner will become the Hudson Valley Credit Union. (Photo by Lauren Thomas)

Developers of the Hudson Valley Credit Union location proposed for the old College Diner site in New Paltz, like those involved with the Trans-Hudson project, are aiming to use a fake second floor, but location is everything: this site is in a zone where second floors aren’t required, but recommended. These plans, presented during the November 22 Town of New Paltz Planning Board meeting, call for improvements that aren’t euphemisms: the amount of pavement will be cut by more than half, a septic system in the wetland buffer will be remediated and replaced with one completely outside of the buffer and both bicycle parking and electric-vehicle charging ports were put in the proposal without anyone having to ask. There is an extremely wide state right-of-way in front of this property, and pulling up the old parking will put this property more in compliance with what’s allowed there.

A waiver would be required for the proposed standalone drive-through around the back, because drivers rarely turn their cars off while waiting in line, and to cut off that source of pollution they simply aren’t allowed without a unanimous vote of Planning Board members, or a majority vote at the Town Council, or a variance from members of the Zoning Board of Appeals. The new dumpster would remain in the wetlands buffer, but developers hope it won’t be that bad since it’s largely going to hold paper, and that’s quite different than the garbage tossed out from a diner.

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Board members must address the question of the drive-through lanes, as a denial of that aspect may sink the venture entirely. Developers, for their part, are being asked to either put pedestrian pathways into the parking lot as required in the code, or add that to the list of waivers being sought. That list of waivers should be given to board members in the near future.