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New Windsor Planning Board Votes “Aye” On Stewart Hill

New Windsor Planning Board Votes “Aye”

ON STEWART HILL INDUSTRIAL PARK

Residents in the area of Route 207 and Toleman Rd who have been  fighting a proposed warehouse that they said  has plans that go way beyond original proposals took a big hit this month when the ZBA interpretation of the major zoning issue was put back in the hands of the Planning Board. In an area that once had very scenic views, a number of homeowners who already find their views blocked by the Stowaway Storage buidings will likely have a large new warehouse and 12-ft. fencing as well. The homeowners formed an association to fight the project, but this month the Planning Board reviewed the ZBA’s interpretation and agreed, but decided that the project would pass muster IF the additional building fulfills the requirement of being related to the main purpose.

Given the sheer size and scale of the project, the residents felt that given the design of approximately 520,000 sf of warehouse space and 20,00 sf of office space, there simply is no way that the warehouse space will be subordinate to anything; it is clearly “the main purpose of the business.”  They further argued that a 571,000 sq. ft.  SHIP Distribution, along with the planned Stowaway expansion (463,000 sf)  will cover in excess of 147 acres, which will go from open fields and forest and become covered land in their neighborhood.  Along with that, they claimed, the area will lose wetlands, have a traffic nightmare, and be at risk of aquifer contamination.

The New Windsor Planning Board took their comments under advisement regarding the question whether it would be a subordinate and the resulting discussion and decision was as follows:

 

Chairman Argenio’s opinion, per the board’s minutes -“My thought process for you guys is that as I continue this I think okay, if Yellow Freight were coming in here is that warehouse subordinate to the office? No, t’s not. If Carlisle Trucking is coming in here, is that a warehouse space subordinate to the office? In my mind, no, it’s not. But you guys make your own decision.. If Joe’s Sporting Goods comes in and Joe’s Sporting Goods makes ATVs down in New Jersey and snowmobiles in Pennsylvania and they bring it and they also sell gloves and helmets and whatever else they sell and they bring them to this piece of property and they put those snowmobiles in that warehouse so they can ship them to a retailer, I think that’s allowed, I think that’s what the code allows for. Again, RL Carriers, smaller freight company, their freight, if they’re going to come in here, bring their trucks in and out all day, all night, stock freight in this place, they’re not allowed, that does not fit in the OLI zone in my opinion.

After the  lengthy dialogue continued about what would and would not constitute “subordinate use”, the decision was made that any preliminary approval would have to include the verbiage that whatever use came in it will  have to be “subordinate”.

While a lot-line change still needs to be presented, and definition of a 12-ft. fence, the decision was made to declare a NEGDEC (Negative Impact on the Environment) and the board gave a unanimous “AYE” to  give conditional FInal Approval to the project, pending the lot-line change.

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