Lowe’s Update

There’s been a flurry of activity on the Newman PDD application since the Planning Board officially issued its Official Findings statement on June 12 and the County Planning Board approved the proposal on the same day. The Town Board has spent two full sessions carefully reviewing that Findings statement with the goal of producing its own amended version.

At a special meeting Monday, the board raised questions about the need for a traffic study for the Center Street intersection and another study to see if the Morganview entrance should be right turn in/out only. The board will attempt to resolve these issues and have a draft of its own Findings statement by its next meeting on July 10.

Meanwhile the Planning Board has been working on site plan issues. Much of the action is apparently taking place out of public view in a series of private meetings between the developer and selected members of the planning board, the town board and the town’s architectural review committee (which includes Ken Book, Dan Dimpfl and Marge Wilkie). These private meetings are legal so long as a quorum of any one board is not present at the same time.

A glimpse of how the negotiation are going was revealed at the board’s recent meeting, also on Monday. The Planning Board is apparently trying to get the overall height of the peak reduced to less than 45 feet. They have also asked that the background of the Lowe’s sign in the peak be changed from a bright red to a earthier brown.

The board is also concerned about Newman’s plan to deed a block of ground fronting Rt. 20-A to the town. The town does not want the land, and to do so would reduce the required open space that the developer is required to maintain to below the required 40%.

The planning board is also working on responding to a letter from the town board asking for more specific recommendations on site dimensions and other details. The Planning Board has scheduled two more meetings in July to continue this review. They will be on July 14 and 21.

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