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COLONIE: Land-use plan in final stages

"For the board to continue making changes to the plan defeats the purpose of why you had the comprehensive plan developed," said lawyer Donald Zee, representing the current owners of a parcel off Forts Ferry Road and Omega Terrace. "The town spent a lot of money and time, and I think it's important that the town board support that data when such careful review has been given."

Over the course of three years, the town held 35 public meetings and reviewed almost 4,000 public surveys, said Zee.

However, Nichols questioned Zee's logic, saying his remarks merely served the interests of his clients, whom Nichols said have had ample time to develop the property and chose not to.

The Omega Terrace and Forts Ferry Road property is predominately residential, and, Nichols said, to make it anything else would hurt the quality of life of dozens of residents adjacent to the parcel.

Other questions regarding the proposed zoning changes delved into the debate over how, and/or if, Colonie could rid itself of adult entertainment uses. The topic was addressed in the first series of responses from the November meeting. The responses ranged from listing the three zones open to adult use under the new plan to state laws guiding adult entertainment development and operation. The town can't outright ban adult uses, as they are protected rights under the federal and state constitutions. Although the town could outlaw nudity, Town Attorney Arnis Zilgme said that law would also have an impact on theater, film and art.

The town will continue the public comment period at its Thursday, Dec. 21, meeting.

Brizzell said she would like to begin the New Year with the new land-use and zoning ordinances.""

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