Developers of a proposed 75-tent luxury camping resort on 77 acres in West Saugerties on the Woodstock border have pulled their application, saying the project no longer checked all the necessary boxes.
“After careful evaluation, it was determined that the project did not meet criteria across several key benchmarks to warrant moving forward,” said Terramor Senior Director of Marketing & Operations Jenny McCullough in a letter sent to neighbors February 8.
“We truly appreciate the time and effort given to this project by the Planning Board and the community members.”
Terramor’s attorney Charles Gottlieb cited similar reasons in a letter to Saugerties Planning Board Chairman Howard Post.
“Based on internal business decisions related to the project, Terramor has decided to formally withdraw its site plan, special use permit and subdivision applications,” he wrote.
“David has beaten Goliath,” wrote Susan Paynter, head of Citizens Against Terramor on the group’s Facebook page. Paynter urged readers to stay tuned for plans to purchase the land and make it into a nature preserve.
“While we do not yet know the specific reasons for Terramor withdrawing their application, one thing is clear. The hard work of speaking for our voiceless environment is vital for the health of our environment and our future,” said Woodstock Land Conservancy in a statement in reaction to the news.
Woodstock Town Board member Laura Ricci, who had been fighting the development on behalf of the town, welcomed Terramor’s decision.
“They were going to take 77 acres. They were going to destroy the environment by putting in a road and 75 tents which they called temporary structures. They weren’t on concrete, they were on wood. But they had tile bathrooms, they would have had in-ground plumbing built from tent to tent,” Ricci said.
“It was a whole community that would have been for transients and it would have damaged the environment and it would have been just the wrong use for that neighborhood…”
Ricci called the activism that led up to Terramor’s decision “a collaborative effort.”
“The Citizens Against Terramor, the Woodstock Environmental Commission, the Woodstock Day School, the Woodstock Jewish Congregation and other environmental groups and organizations worked tirelessly for months to make this happen. Their constant collaboration really won this battle to stop an irresponsible development,” said Town Board member Bennet Ratcliff, who had advocated to have Woodstock apply its wetlands law to the project and force Terramor to apply for permits.
News of the withdrawal came just a day after Terramor pulled its scheduled February 21 presentation to the Saugerties Planning Board.
Some 20 speakers warned of a potential environmental disaster at a January 17 public hearing on the project. Nobody among the 200-plus crowd spoke in favor of the project.