Public hearing airs two subdivision proposals

By Rob Sample
Posted 9/20/23

The Marlborough Planning Board will draft an approval of a two-lot subdivision on Plattekill Road – and voted unanimously in favor of a proposal to repurpose an agricultural building on …

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Public hearing airs two subdivision proposals

The Marlborough Planning Board will draft an approval of a two-lot subdivision on Plattekill Road – and voted unanimously in favor of a proposal to repurpose an agricultural building on Idlewild Road. The two measures were among the business that took place at the Board’s Monday, September 18 meeting.
That meeting encompassed public hearings for the Plattekill Road subdivision as well as a three-lot proposed subdivision on Mount Zion Road. The former, an almost 42-acre parcel at 420 Plattekill Road, is owned by Karl Fredericks, who wants to carve out a seven-acre lot to build a house there for his son.
Adrienne Falco, who is purchasing a property adjacent to the Fredericks land, wanted to know whether Fredericks would further develop the larger, 35-acre remaining property. She also wanted to know where on the smaller parcel the new house would sit. 
“I’d like to be aware [of any such plans] to make sure I’m making the right decision to purchase there,” said Falco. The project’s surveyor, Jonathan Millen of A.C.E.S., Inc. of Newburgh, noted that the house would be 150 feet from the nearest property line and would toward the property’s rear boundary. 
“We’re talking about a three- or four-bedroom house, with septic and a well,” said Millen. “There’s not much more to say at this time.”
But while the Plattekill Road subdivision is set to be approved at the next Planning Board meeting, on October 2, additional issues need to be resolved before the Mount Zion Road proposal moves forward. There, Caroline and Steven Santini want to create a three-lot subdivision on a 25.4-acre parcel they own at 219 Mount Zion Road.
Their current plans call for one 2.5-acre lot and another four-acre lot, both of which have houses on them built decades ago. They don’t currently propose building anything on the remaining 18.9 acres, which are on the town’s ridgeline. However, in the view of one Board member, that acreage must be able to support the construction of at least one home to be considered a subdivided lot. 
“We have very strict rules on which areas with the ridgeline can be built on,” said Cindy Lanzetta, the board member who raised this issue. “It’s important that we look at this property and identify where any building can take place.”
Whether any building would be feasible is unknown at this point. The 18.9-acre parcel would be quite steep, contains some wetlands – and it has yet to be surveyed for any construction purposes.
“It has been my understanding that this can be done at either the subdivision state or at the building-permit state,” said Patrick Hines, principal of MH&E Consulting Engineers of New Windsor and the Planning Board’s engineer. 
During the hearing, Newburgh resident William Nicklin also sought to clarify the ownership of a private lane adjoining the parcel. Surveyor Patricia Brooks of Control Point Associates of Highland confirmed that while the lane does have a right-of-way agreement enabling access to the two houses on the Santini property, the lane itself is on property owned by Nicklin’s family.
Mount Zion Road resident LaPrise questioned whether the property involved would be used at some point in the future for the Santinis’ landscaping business. “Just to clarify, he [Steven Santini] will not be operating a business there, and this [subdivision application] has nothing to do with that,” said Board Chairman Chris Brand. “If Mr. Santini were to wish to operate a business, he would have to submit a site plan for that and come before this board.”
While the Board moved to close the hearing, it is keeping the matter open for written comments for one additional week. Brand also directed Hines and Town Attorney Meghan Clemente to research the issue of whether a lot must be determined to be “buildable” before it can be subdivided.
The repurposed agricultural building at 131 Idlewild Road was discussed at length during the Board’s September 5 meeting. Besides its approval, the Board discussed two matters:
• Mohegan Farms, a proposal to convert an unused agricultural building into a 24/7 storage facility. Project engineer Nadine Carney of Peak Engineering made a range of changes since the site plan was aired at the Planning Board’s August 21 meeting, especially relating to parking and paved areas. At the request of several board members, her plans will include a quiet-closing type of storage-bay. The Board scheduled a public hearing for Mohegan Farms on October 16.
• A two-lot subdivision at 30 Partington Lane in Marlboro. This is a private road and the proposed subdivision would cause it to exceed the number of allowable lots for such roadways. However, property owner Steven Markle pointed out that two other homeowners’ lots also front a neighboring road that those owners typically use to access their homes. Brand instructed Markle to obtain a map outlining that other roadway, particularly the amount of frontage each property has on it.