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Town Board Minutes 3/12/2009
AT A SPECIAL MEETING OF THE TOWN BOARD OF THE TOWN OF NISKAYUNA DULY CALLED AND HELD ON THE 12TH DAY OF MARCH, 2009 AT THE NISKAYUNA TOWN BOARD ROOM, ONE NISKAYUNA CIRCLE, NISKAYUNA, NY, THE FOLLOWING MEMBERS WERE PRESENT:

JULIE McDONNELL, COUNCILWOMAN
MARIE P. FRUND, COUNCILWOMAN
DIANE P. O’DONNELL, COUNCILWOMAN
LIZ ORZEL KASPER, COUNCILWOMAN
JOE LANDRY, SUPERVISOR

        Others present:  Helen Kopke, Town Clerk; Eric Dickson, Town Attorney; Richard Pollock, Superintendent of Water & Sewer; Lew Moskowitz, Chief of Police; Paul Sebesta, Comptroller; Frank Gavin, Superintendent of Highways and Kathy Matern, Town Planner.

PRESENTATION
PROPOSED INDOOR SOCCER STRUCTURE
        Mike Parzych and Steve Aweduti representatives of the Niskayuna Soccer Club and Niskayuna Lacrosse Club addressed the Board regarding the possibility of building an indoor facility on a Town soccer field.  In late 2008, the two clubs purchased the artificial turf and boards from Center City which is being redeveloped.  The ultimate goal is for both clubs to fill a gap for practice space that Center City played for the club. Both organizations used this space for practice time using artificial turf versus gym floors.  
They have researched a number of options in terms of available manufacturing buildings for sale or lease, looked at industrial land, various options for Town land, and the potential use of land by the Community Center on Aqueduct Road.  One of the most favorable options is to locate a facility on Field 1 on the current Zenner Road soccer complex.  This location provides the best option as far as working with the Town from a utilities perspective getting access off Balltown Road for water, sewer, and gas lines. Each of their clubs used Center City between 15 and 20 hours per week during November to March and there are other organizations that may take advantage of such a space.  
Both organizations are 501C3 non-profits, they would continue to run it as a non-profit and want only to cover costs with use of the facility.  They requested consideration for a resolution at the Board’s next meeting in support of their plan since they need to engage an engineering firm and also look at financing options.  With the support of the Board, they feel they would be more successful in acquiring financing by putting this facility on Town land with the intent of working out a lease arrangement for the space.  
Councilwoman McDonnell clarified that the resolution they are requesting would be to support the concept and would be contingent upon the Boards review of the engineering and financing plan and the Board would have to undertake a legal study to look through the lease options. They are considering becoming an LLC organization as a 50/50 type of ownership between the clubs, keeping their non-profit status.  
The building would be basic steel construction (steel frame with metal siding and roofing) approximately 200’ long and 100’ wide, similar to tennis clubs.  The footprint would take up no more space than one outdoor field.  The maximum height would be 35’ high, the side would be 20-25’ high.  
Councilwoman O’Donnell recognizes the need for indoor space but it has been her experience that typically these buildings are in industrial parks and commercial areas.  She has never visited one that had a connection to a municipality and we would be losing green space at a time when fields are at a premium in Niskayuna.
The clubs have reviewed other options such as renting warehouse space and purchasing land in an industrial park but there is nothing available.  The industrial park in Schenectady was off limits because of environmental issues.  The Rotterdam Industrial Park was worried about liability with tractor trailers 24 hours a day which would pose a hazard for families using the facility.
They are trying to do this as cost effectively as possible.  A partnership with the
Town helps open up use of the facility and avoids the upfront purchase or lease of additional space in an industrial park.  They saved $70,000 buying the Center City artificial grass.  Based on their analysis they are hoping to charge about $100 per hour in the five month period November through March understanding the facility would be used only evenings and weekends (about 75-80% of the time).  This is almost half of the going rate for other facilities which are not non-profit.  This figure takes into account utilities, insurance, and financing options.  They have considered giving other Niskayuna groups availability and would be open to this.  
        If they could cover their costs using the lower rate it would be beneficial for both clubs so families in Niskayuna wouldn’t be paying a premium for indoor space and it would give them a bit of an edge by not trying to turn a monthly profit.  Currently, there is a facility in Latham and Clifton Park.   
        Councilwoman Kasper expressed concern about the management and maintenance of the building.  They don’t expect to hire someone full time, but expect to utilize some of their club members on a part time basis for maintenance.  She believes we need a County-wide facility. They agreed, but because the clubs have no winter space, the organizations feel time is of the essence.  The turf they have purchased would suffice for the building they are researching but a County-wide project would require 3 to 4 times the size of their proposed building.  Councilwoman Kasper feels this is a very large, tall, building unattractive building near the road. They think the most cost effective option is a full steel building. Supervisor Landry added that Town buildings do not require Planning and Zoning Board approval because they are on Town property; however, they still have to comply with building code requirements.  They have budgeted $1,500 per week for utilities and they would insulate the facility.
        Councilwoman Freund was informed that they would seek 15 year financing with the  buildings expected life at 30 to 50 years.  The footprint of the building is smaller than a soccer field and the Town would be losing one field.
        Councilwoman McDonnell stated that the Committee would be looking to go back to G. E. and request more land to replace this field and add more fields in the future for other sports as well.  We hope in the end not to lose fields but to gain fields.  The clubs completed two new fields at the Rec Center which will be ready this spring.  
        Councilwoman O’Donnell inquired if we have thought about doing a traffic study.  Use of the facility will be during the worst time of day to make left hand turns onto or from Balltown Road.  She thinks a traffic study would be worth doing because she is worried and felt, although the project does not have to go through Planning & Zoning, their eyes on this project would be very beneficial for all.  The clubs have considered this, but this is not a change in use and the only a change from an outdoor to indoor facility.  The volume of traffic would be less going in and out than during the other seasons.  During the week the facility would be used from about 5 p.m. and 11 p.m. and all day Saturday and Sunday.  Councilwoman Kasper felt that the turn in and out of the facility is difficult plus we haven’t used the facility in the winter time.  
        Councilwoman McDonnell was informed that the space would be used for practice not for tournaments and expected 30 players for each time period.  There are currently 60 parking spaces and the lot is currently without lighting.  As part of their discussions, they have considered the cost of putting in water and sewer; however, there will be no capital costs to the Town.  The Highway Department may help with some land preparation.  In the past some employees have volunteered to help with projects and some employees may be involved with the clubs already.  
Councilwoman O’Donnell wondered if we were putting the cart before the horse considering a resolution without knowing the legal issues.  Attorney Dickson stated that the Board can explore the issue and listen to the proposal.  He understands the clubs are looking for a sense of the Board as to whether or not they approve the concept of looking at it more.  The Board is not in a position to give a binding commitment for final approval because he is sure there will be issues. Currently, the soccer club has a lease on the available fields today.  The clubs have put up the capital in the past to build a pavilion which is on Town land.  

PUBLIC HEARING
        Public Hearing No. 1 – regarding the renewal and modification of the franchise agreement between Time Warner and the Town.
        Supervisor Landry explained that this is a proposed franchise agreement between Time Warner and the Town which is a result of negotiations that have occurred over the last year.  The previous agreement expired in October 2004 and as Supervisor he felt it was a priority to reach an agreement.  
The proposal would allow 5% of the gross receipts to go to the Town and is worth $12,000-$15,000 more per year to the Town.  There is a portion of the agreement that allocates $102,150 to be used for the purchase of equipment for the production of public education and governmental use access programs (PEG).  It is important to him that we provide access to the public of Town Board, Planning Board, Zoning Board and School Board meetings.  This money will allow the purchase of equipment that can be used to promote the production of governmental programs.  He has strongly supported videotaping Town Board meetings and this money will bring the Town and School to the next level of access.  He fully supports the provisions of this proposed agreement that allocates money for the PEG access.  
$75,000 would be used to purchase equipment used by Niskayuna High School in its new studio.  The remainder of $27,102 would be used by the Town to purchase equipment used in the Board Room at Town Hall. It is anticipated that the cost for the equipment will be borne by the subscribers in Niskayuna (customers of Time Warner).  The cost would be another $.11 per month which is about $1.32 per year, or $15 over the 10 year period.  
        John Mucha, Government Relations, Time Warner, appeared representing Time Warner and stated that since 1994 Time Warner has made many improvements to the system and they now have a state of the art cable system.  Added products include Road Runner, Digital Cable, Video on Demand, DVR Service, Digital Phone Service, Caller ID on TV, Start Over and the addition of 70 High Definition channels. Their system is competitive with any cable system in the country and is supported by excellent employees.
        Councilwoman Kasper asked the rationale for committing to a ten year contract.  The PFC changed their rules to allow 15 year agreements in New York because the standard in the rest of the country is 15 years.  With the investment that they make in upgrading, maintaining the system, and providing new products, a 10 year agreement gives them a sense that they can make it profitable for them over a period of time.  If we did contracts more frequently we would be almost continually talking about renewal.  He considers 10 year the minimum they would want to do.
        Councilwoman Kasper asked for a definition of “reasonable” in an excerpt that states “The town shall have the power at any time to order and require the company to remove and abate any power, tower, wire cable, electronic conductor, etc. or property upon reasonable demonstration…..”  Supervisor Landry responded that this is a common term used throughout contracts.  It is left to the courts to determine the definition and it is almost impossible to define as it is based on circumstances of the predicament you are in.  There have been reported cables down at the corner of Brookshire and St. David’s for two years which she feels is not reasonable.  Town Attorney Dickson stated that reasonable means what a reasonable person would think.  It depends on circumstances.  Mr. Mucha would be very surprised if their technical department were notified of cables down that were not taken care of immediately.  
        Carol McTag, Sr. Municipal Consultant with the Department of Public Service, negotiated the prior contract and responded to a question regarding how density is determined.  The density issue comes from the Department of Public Service regulations standard formula that cable companies must comply with.  If there are areas outside of 20 homes per mile there is a formula the company is required to utilize to come up with a construction cost.  She has not seen any franchises with a density below 20 homes per mile.  This seems to be a reasonable number where they are not paying an exorbitant amount to bring cable to the customer and the customer is not paying any additional cost.  
        Basic service is the lowest tier of service for channels 2 through 21 or 22 and would include all the broadcast stations and C-SPAN.  They often provide schools with the full standard service as well. Our contract states that Time Warner will provide service to any school K-12, any fire house, and any building which is owned or leased by the Town.  They also provide free internet service to schools and the library.  Niskayuna has just under 7,500 subscribers
Councilwoman O’Donnell supports the equipment and supports that we have been filming at Town Hall but $102,150 over ten years seems like a lot of money to spend. The $27,150 especially seems like a lot for Town Hall.  The contract was negotiated so after five years we would get additional money to replace whatever equipment is outdated up to $10,000.  Theoretically the money goes to the Town and then the Town distributes it.  Councilwoman O’Donnell is aware of a studio at Iroquois which was a great experience for her children who missed the studio when they went to the high school.
Councilwoman Kasper asked about the contract wording for complaint procedures which does not mention resolution of complaints.  Ms. McTag stated they have a separate department to handle complaints and have a process in place with a separate phone number located on each bill.  When the subscriber complains, it is forwarded to the cable company with a copy to the municipality.  The cable company has ten business days to respond.  The resolution goes to the municipality as well as the subscriber.  If the subscriber still feels that the complaint has not been rectified, they have other procedures in place.  Their liability of $1 million per accident is standard for contracts.
New subscribers will automatically be charged the extra $.11 per month.  Once the agreement is approved by the Board, the cable company applies to the Public Service Commission for their agreement. They will only collect the total amount stated in the contract.  If more subscribers are added, the pay off time will be shortened.  In terms of the PEG program, no more than an additional $.11 per month will be added to bills; however, other rate increases may occur.
Ms. McTag noted that there is usually a provision in contracts that says if there is a change in law or rules or regulations that the company will comply.  Documents are made to be fluid, not static, so if there are any changes in Federal or State law or regulations the company needs to comply with those regulations which would result in benefits to the municipalities.  With a ten year term the Town is not locked into a static contract.  

XXXXX Pawtucket Avenue, didn’t hear what the agreement does for the average consumer and she felt most have a number of complaints.  They are tired of channels being moved from one tier to another which costs the consumer more. They don’t like the lower channels being left blank and would like this addressed.

XXXXX, Orchard Park Drive (and past President of Channel 16 Board of Directors) noted that there would be an increase in the amount paid but it was not specified and he would like to know the expected amount of how much is to be paid annually.  There was repeated mention of the importance of government access television being shown on Channel 16 but the agreement provides for no compensation to Channel 16. In 30 years the only municipality that provided funding to Channel 16 was the City of Schenectady and there has never been any assistance provided by Niskayuna.  Mr. Burns is videotaping this meeting and he will be paid by the Town but Channel 16 will not charge to air it.  He thinks it is essential that there also be compensation by the community to Channel 16 or we can expect it to disappear as it cannot exist without any support
Regarding the amount of revenue for the Town, he noted that the wording in the agreement states “the company shall pay the municipality a sum equal to 5% of the gross revenues,” but does not say “5% of Town of Niskayuna gross revenues.” and he felt the agreement should be more precise.   
Mr. Bertsch also noted there is no support for educational television. The school will have a studio.  Shenendehowa has a wonderful studio but they don’t produce any programs because of budget constraints.  In the past he’s asked about having programs on Niskayuna’s education television that ties in R & D as Niskayuna’s big resource with education television.  There must be people that are interested in providing tutoring or programs for high school students.  It requires money and it is inappropriate to look at this as a mechanism for getting there.  He has explored other areas of the country and one area had separate stations for the primary grades, junior college, and the university and the school presented its budget on the channel.  This contract says zero about access television.  He thinks it is their civic responsibility to ask how much this contract is worth.  $.11 per household is minuscule.  It is anticipated that Time Warner may increase their amount because of new services but the other pieces are fixed for ten years.  
The access television that they have identified doesn’t get any funding.  The education units can have an excellent studio but if they don’t have funds to work with, they will either take it out of the tax base or they will be putting it into the contract.  He would prefer some of it in the contract.

XXXXX Brookshire Drive, stated a 10 year contract seems like a long time in this day and age when everything changes so rapidly.  Time Warner has gone up considerably.  She questioned spending $27,150 for equipment and wondered what feedback they get about filming the meetings.  She wondered who it was benefiting to have the meetings filmed, and who was watching.  The Time Warner representative was not sure if there were parts of Niskayuna that were not able to receive cable access.  
To pour an additional $75,000 for equipment for the school she wondered what guarantees we would have that they would be producing anything.  We can’t just give them money and not know what they are going to do with it and feels the same way about additional equipment at Town Hall.  

Kevin Baughman, Superintendent of Niskayuna Schools, & Dave Crandall, Administrator for Technology & Chief Information Officer, appeared to announce what the school district would be doing with the proposed grant funds from the Town.  David Hudson and Deborah Gordon, School Board Members, were also in attendance.  
He thanked the Board for including the school in their negotiations and to potentially be a benefactor of part of the funds.  They approached the Town Board three years ago and submitted a proposal which has changed somewhat due to technology changes.  As recognized by the Board, they already have pod-casting programs at VanAnwerp which is different technology than the typical high school production.  The high school does not have anything.  They had equipment donated by Time Warner through the Town in a previous agreement and starting last year they began the first course in 30 years in TV production. The program disappeared due to time, space, and money.  They think it is a tremendous teaching and learning opportunity and have hired Paul Conti and is very well known who is helping them on design.  There is space committed in the new construction and the equipment in the old media center will be part of the new TV production facility.  
Dave Crandall reported that there is use at all levels for the proposed $75,000 for technology for instruction.  When he was Principal at Iroquois they started a TV station and it has become a very important part of that school community.  They have communicated with astronauts as they orbited the earth, broadcasted interviews by students with the Ambassador to Vietnam and they have done morning news shows for the last 10 years.  They have always wanted Van Antwerp to have a TV station also but they require a lot of effort, work, and commitment on the part of adults and kids. Their focus was for something else.  Things are changing in journalism towards the web side versus the TV broadcast side.  Van Antwerp is doing broadcasting but doing it in a different fashion.  
The studio at the high school has been in the plans for a number of years.  They will use equipment received in the past but not in the way they want to utilize it now.  They have the mass media program; they are doing production, they are story-boarding, and creating.  They also have a group of teachers and administrators looking at curriculum and how they might use that in areas such as journalism using the web or audio video.  The Art program uses video and is eager to use TV resources.  The Technology Department has a mass media program which could be expanded. Ultimately they will look at their CEIP Program (internship program) to look for opportunities to allow juniors and seniors to move into the community and expand their knowledge base and experience.  They are meeting with consultants to identify the equipment that they need to provide the type of program they would like to have.  They recently had talks about creating documentaries to share within the school and community.
They are looking at developing curriculum and hoping to utilize the facility not just for typical morning news but imbed it in a number of different subject areas and use it as a teaching tool.  They look at the potential $75,000 as a great step towards getting the equipment that they want to make a difference to the kids.
Superintendent Baughman added that they can see student art work that could be featured; musicals, any kind of student performance and potentially Board meetings could be considered as a possibility.  They want to fill the educational channel with learning opportunities and they would like to start small and do it right.  They want it featured with student programming and ultimately they can see long term potential of continuing education expansion and out reach to the public.  He would love to use it to get information out about our schools and the budget.  This will take staffing but they need infrastructure which is the means to an end.   
Councilwoman Kasper noted that 14 years ago as part of the first contract they gave the school funds and the equipment sat in the basement until most of it was thrown away.  
Superintendent Baughman stated they have a $25,000 grant from Senator Farley and there is money planned in the building project to construct the room and provide some equipment.  The proposal for digital equipment is very expensive so they are looking at the ability to have a scalable project.  They should have equipment that provides some level of production that is digital and somewhat cutting edge so when their students graduate they would be familiar with some of the latest technology.  Some of the old equipment is still being used.  For a period of time they didn’t have space then they didn’t have the expertise.  
Construction for the technology space will be finished next summer. They are retooling their technology curriculum for a pre-engineering program and next year will offer the capstone course.  They have brought a new teacher on who has experience with this course, with production and mass media.  Iroquois worked because they had teachers that were dedicated to it.  They need the leadership, space, and teachers who are interested.  He is willing to put the effort into making it happen.  They have a good team together and are looking at combining this with Social Studies, English, and Art – it is not just about producing a television show.  They want to look at this in a much bigger fashion with journalism, art, as well as the technology piece and production piece.  If they were able to get everything that the consultant suggests it is between $200,000 and $300,000.  This doesn’t mean they can’t begin with $75,000.  It may mean fewer cameras, or the mixing board may be more modest.  They created Iroquois with no money and used leftover pieces and parts.
As far as timing of the release of funds, Supervisor Landry noted that the contract needs approval from the PFC which will take about six months.  When funds are available the school could use it quickly to purchase equipment for their existing course.  Mr. Crandall said there is a real learning curve with some of this equipment and the instructor will need time to familiarize himself.  If they received funds next spring, this would give the teacher the opportunity and ability to utilize some of it, and also begin to familiarize himself with some of the equipment and prepare over the summer to start using it in September when the room will be ready.
Councilwoman Kasper noted that this is a pass-through to the Town from users of Time Warner who are not all Niskayuna students.  We have a lot of things that pass through to Niskayuna residents to benefit the schools but it is not fair that the people in Woodhaven will benefit but the people in South Colonie schools but live in the Town are going to pay for it.  She cautioned the school not to get equipment too soon when they weren’t ready.  She didn’t know how the Town will use the funds and feels we are not ready.  
In response to Councilwoman Freund inquiry, the school is currently using part of the space in the old library for their technology classes.  The TV studio will be substantially larger than the Iroquois studio and will also have a production booth within it.  This will be a separate room where the producers, directors, sound board, and video editors can work and will have a live area where they can do production.  Class size will be as limited as other technology classes with low 20’s and enrollment will not be restricted.
Superintendent Baughman felt the high school is missing a sense of “village.” Having the capability for a TV studio should help make them feel smaller.  Students will be able to view productions on the TV station the next day.  He sees this as an opportunity to make people feel a part of things to know what is going on.
Councilwoman McDonnell looks at this as an opportunity to provide information to the community.  It sounds like they have the expertise on staff to operate the studio and to take the lead.  She asked what the costs were for production and inquired if some of the funds can be used for operations. Supervisor Landry responded that this is capital money and it can’t be used for operational purposes.
Superintendent Baughman continued that in this economic climate the project will be done incrementally.  Without the infrastructure and without the vision in place they won’t be able to make it happen.  His vision is that long term they will have a full time person committed to teaching 2 or 3 classes and also working with various departments.
Councilwoman O’Donnell was informed that the list of $102,150 in equipment attached to the agreement is for illustrative purposes.  This expenditure would have to be competitively bid so they wanted to have some assurances from Time Warner on how the money was being spent knowing that we will publicly bid this.  The list was included as a guideline.  Currently there is no contract between the Town and the School. When the funds are available a contract will be prepared.  The Town can put together contracts with not-for-profits as long as we are getting public service for what we are doing.  

Brian Gordon, XXXXX (and Schenectady County Representative) stated that this not just a school program but a community issue. - the community that was the birthplace of television.  This gives an opportunity to the students and also the community to view sports events, productions, music, art displays.  We have an aging community in the County and Town this will allow access to venues that may not be otherwise accessible for our community elders.  As the program advances it looks as though there are limitless opportunities for the school district, its students, but also for the community to enjoy.  It also allows access for local government for Town Board meetings, School Board issues, and Zoning issues.  Over time the $.11 per month is a small investment that will yield very large returns.

XXXXX Fairlawn Parkway, felt that a 10-year contract is a too long.  She realizes it is profitable for Time Warner but is it in the best interest of the Town?  The School District presented wonderful plans but the amount of money they are talking about is seed money and is not going to cover very much.  In light of this, what will be the eventual impact on the tax payers down the road?  This type of equipment may be viable for awhile but it becomes outdated.  These are very expensive programs for a school district and she questioned the impact on taxes for the Town and School.

        Public Hearing No. 2 – to consider a Special Use Permit for a medical office building on Balltown Road at Reilly Way.  
        Tom Andres, ABD Engineers & Surveys, representing the applicant is proposing to construct a 15,000 SF building on Balltown Road at Reilly Way in Niskayuna Meadows that requires a Special Use Permit in the R-P zone.
A few years ago a 10 lot subdivision was created across the street from G. E. which was part of the original PDP that had been approved 20 years ago.  The Town rezoned the land and the front portion is an R-P Zone.  The front lot is a 2-acre parcel that could be developed as single family homes.  There was a lot of interest from the Planning Board to develop this for a commercial-type use of professional or medical offices.  Access would be off of Reilly Way with no access off of Balltown Road.  This is a 2 story 15,000 SF building with a single medical use as of now.  They have discussed the potential of turning lanes, a traffic light, and aligning Reilly Way with the G. E. entrance with DOT when the rest of the 10 lot project is fully developed.  Unfortunately, when Reilly was built it couldn’t be aligned with the GE entrance because of large NIMO power lines that were immediately adjacent to the north.  The owner of the land at that time negotiated and obtained some of the land but they weren’t able to move it far enough over so there was a slight offset.  
        As part of this proposal they have met with the Planning Department and DOT and the applicant will relocate the G. E. driveway south so it will align with Reilly Way.  They had originally done a traffic study for the 10-lot subdivision. The 2004 report studied traffic for a 20,000 SF medical building.  This showed 21 vehicle trips for the a.m. and 30 trips for peak p.m. traffic and included the medical building and nine single family homes.  They analyzed with a smaller medical building which resulted in 30 morning trips and 45 peak p.m. trips.  The proposed user of the building has their first patient at 8 a.m. and their last appointment is 4 or 4:30.  
It is being presented as general medical since its use could change.  It is being designed for one tenant but does have potential for more than one tenant.  In the future they might have a medical practice that only needs 4,000 SF so they might be taking the first floor or maybe there may be a small office there.  Or a practice may take the whole first floor with a second practice taking the second floor.  The proposed tenant will have an option to purchase the building.  The owner may decide to sell to another practitioner, or they may change their practice or sell the building so they are asking for approval of a general medical building.  They have parking sufficient for this.  
The builder would not be going forward if financing was not in place for this tenant – it is not a spec building.  The type of practice is unknown but it fits our zoning.  The zoning requires 99 spaces. They have told the Planning Board that for this tenant they don’t need to construct all these so they land-banked them and are proposing to construct 74 spaces which the Planning Board put a waiver on.  The Board was shown a sketch of the front of the building which will be able to seen from Balltown Road.  Parking will be lower than Balltown Road and some will be seen from the road.  There is proposed landscaping all around the parking parameter.  Lot 1 has a wetland area in the rear reserved as part of the original subdivision open space and it also has a storm water facility on the northwest corner as part of the Town system.  

        XXXX Brookshire Drive, was told that the setback off Balltown Road would be 120’ from the edge of Balltown Road.  She noted that Balltown Road has some wonderful commercial properties that you cannot see from the road.  She is concerned that this building started out at 12,000 SF, now it is up to 14,000 SF.  She thinks the building is very close to the road and since it is the entrance to a residential area she hoped that the Board has some influence over the landscaping.  We seem to be clustering everything in one area on Balltown and it is only a two lane road and the traffic is terrible.  If they do complete the indoor soccer building this will be an eye sore to her because it is big (and blue).  If we have an Architectural Review Board they should look at development of this particular section.  Nothing has been said about a traffic light or left hand turns.  She doesn’t know whether the soccer fields would have to have a right or left hand turn restriction.  
        When we built Town Hall, we had a referendum and people voted on it.  We are not voting on whether or not we want a 35’ indoor soccer building.  The proposed medical building is in the area of the soccer building which is a traffic hazard.  We have a vacant medical arts building and thinks the Board should be very careful about giving Special Use Permits for any more buildings.

        XXXXX Pawtucket Avenue (and member of the Planning Board) noted that this project went through the process when it was proposed at 12,000 SF.  The redesign lead them going through the process again.  Shrubs and plantings will be addressed at the final site plan and they don’t do that until all the approvals are in order.  The land is zoned for this use and even if they think another use would be more appropriate they have to abide by the zoning which limits their ability to say no.

        There being no further business to come before the Town Board, Supervisor Landry adjourned the meeting.

                                                Helen Kopke, Town Clerk





 
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