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Copake ZBA nixes $80-million resort proposal

Oct 03, 2014 12:45 am
[caption id="" align="alignright" width="280"] The proposed Berkshire Mountain Club.
(Courtesy berkshiremtnclub.com)[/caption]

Diane Valden in The Columbia Paper reports that the Copake Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA), at a Sept. 25 meeting, stopped an $80-million, four-season-resort proposal at the base of the Catamount Ski Resort from Rock Solid Development, LLC. The proposal included a hotel and time-share with 153 residential units (256 beds) built in three phases over 10 years. Because of the recent death of Ralph Shadic, the four remaining board members voted in a tie, thus denying the project. Chair Hillarie Thomas and Frank Peteroy opposed the measure; Michael DiPeri and Jon Strom were in favor. The Columbia Paper obtained an audio recording of the meeting through a Freedom of Information Law request. On the recording, Town Attorney Ken Dow advised the ZBA that a resort hotel is a permitted use in a residential zoning district and that a previous finding by the ZBA in connection with an earlier approval of a similar project at Catamount determined that use of the property as a resort hotel, no matter how the units are owned—by time share or condominium—is still a legal use. Then Valden lists the explanations for the 'no' votes: Peteroy said the current application is a “condo arrangement” and the applicant should apply for a variance filing for a multiple dwelling. Thomas said that the current project is substantially different from the 2003-05 project and that she is not bound by the earlier ZBA decision. She said the current application is not a resort hotel as set forth in the town zoning code but is a condominium or multiple dwelling. She said the application is an “attempt to bypass our code.” Read the full story in The Columbia Paper.
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