Engineer Chris LaPorta went over improvements in the plans for the 162-unit apartment complex planned for Glasco as an introduction to a public hearing at the regular meeting of the Town of Saugerties Planning Board on Tuesday, January 18. Following considerable discussion and a list of conditions still to be met, the board voted to conditionally approve the project, which has been before them for several months.
The proposed complex, at Route 9W, Glasco Turnpike and Belknap Lane, consists of 162 units in 16 two-story buildings, Each unit would have its own parking space and private entrance.
Many of the changes added to the plan since it was first proposed in June have come at the suggestion of the Planning Board. A sidewalk has been added for better pedestrian access to the development. A crosswalk will improve access to the recreational area of the development and some children’s play equipment has been added. The proposal also included landscaping for the near neighbors
Tom Francello, a former Planning Board member, said to LaPorta, “I’m pretty much in shocked with what you’re presenting. I do have to say this is one of the best plans I have seen come through this Planning Board and you’ve listened to what the neighbors wanted and you’ve done more than probably the normal person would have asked for.”
Ron Deek, who owns the property across from the project said he appreciates the developers’ agreement to move Trinity Court to the north, maintaining access to his property.
In response to a question about parking, possibly on driveways that could impact neighbors on Trinity Court, LaPorta said each unit would have a garage and driveway parking, so there should be no impact on parking for residents who have used these roads in the past. He added that it would not be a big problem to add two visitor parking spaces off the road.
Planning Board member Carole Furman suggested that the area around the pool could be fenced to improve safety and separate it from a children’s play area nearby. Developer Tom George said the fence was not contemplated, but he is open to reconsidering it. Furman also suggested seating in the area for a more neighborly feel; George agreed this would not be a problem.
Planning Board member Mike Tiano said the Mount Marion School is to be turned into a kindergarten and administration center and about 100 students would be transferred to the nearby Glasco Elementary School, which would increase the congestion on Glasco Turnpike, a condition that was not considered when the initial traffic study for the project was performed He raised the question for the developers to consider, not in opposition to the project, he said
The board voted to grant conditional approval, subject to conditions specified by consultant Max Stach including: assurance from the school district that the arrangements for school buses on the private road were acceptable and that the district will allow buses to pick up on a private road, that the approval specify the 239 bedrooms specified in the plans and that they provide a letter from Central Hudson verifying electric service to the proposed subdivision.
In approving the proposal, several of the board members praised LaPorta and George for their clear presentation and willingness to work with the board to improve the project.