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Durham informational meeting gets intense

Mar 19, 2021 3:00 pm

Melanie Lekocevic is reporting for Columbia-Greene Media an informational meeting on a potential housing development in Durham turned volatile Tue., Mar. 16. Sixty-one people participated in the video conference call. At several points in the meeting town Supervisor Shawn Marriott called for order and urged participants to refrain from breaking into the conversation. “I understand that emotions are very high with this,” he said. “The town board has a responsibility to give homeowners and property owners a chance to be able to speak and if somebody has a proposed development or site plan that they want to do, we have an obligation to give them a chance to speak.” The proposal put forward by Bosque Development, includes 13 homes and one farm lot with a barn, on 95 acres near Cornwallville and Strong roads. Kaaterskill Associates designed the project and submitted an initial sketch to the town in December. The completed plan was submitted last week. The farm lot will include a barn with a one-bedroom apartment to be used by the farmer and 75 percent of the land will remain undisturbed, said Darrin Elsom, Kaaterskill's principal engineer. The development’s smallest lot size would be 3.81 acres and the largest would be 8 acres. Primary access to the development will be from Storm Road, via a 2,000-foot-long private road. Two home styles would be offered — 2,300 and 3,000 square feet in size. “There are over 200 local residents today that do not want this development, which is a suburban development, not something that is routine for the hamlet of Cornwallville or the town of Durham,” said resident John Doherty before he was muted. “I know there are a lot of people who are not happy with this whole thing,” board member Lisa Cirillo said. “Thirty years ago they wanted to put a county dump on the property, so I think 13 houses is a lot better than a dump.” Elsom said the project could have included more than 13 homes under the law. “We have 13 homes on 95 acres — we could have probably done 21 or 22 if we pushed it,” Elsom said. He said the intention is to leave the majority of vegetation in place. Resident Bill Sternbach said he opposes the project and that “99 percent of the town” is against it as well Read the full story at HudsonValley360 [dot] com.

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