Tech campus making inroads

The clearing and grading of most of the proposed internal roadways within the Luther Forest Technology Campus (LFTC) may begin as early as mid-October.

The package has gone out to bid, said Mike Ingersol, an engineer with the LA Group representing the applicant, LFTC. He said those bids are due Oct. 5, and work could begin soon afterwards.

At the Sept. 19 Malta planning board meeting, approval was granted for the clearing and grading of the western connector road, the main access road between the connector roads and the main access road from the eastern connector road to the Malta town line. At an earlier meeting in August, the planning board approved the clearing and grading of the Stonebreak Road Extension from a 400-foot mark off Route 9N to Hermes Road, as well as the eastern connector road.

The approvals granted last week were conditional pending the transfer of property on the LFTC site to the town of Malta. Negotiations continue regarding the area of property commonly referred to as 28 Acre Woods, which was targeted for donation to the town during the legislative process approving the LFTC.

The property, which is actually 34 acres adjacent to the eastern connector road, also sits next to an area of proposed permanent open space. The technology campus developers want to use existing logging roads on the property following the deed transfer. The town has proposed a more limited timeframe that allows usage for a specified number of years.

The two parties are expected to reach an agreement prior to the Monday, Oct. 2, town board meeting.

Jane Catalano, a representative from National Grid, was present at this week's town board workshop meeting held Monday, Sept. 25, and she presented the board with a resolution approved in 1924 by the Malta town board that authorized the granting of a franchise to Adirondack Power and Light Corporation (a predecessor to National Grid) in town. If the resolution is valid, it would eliminate the need for a public hearing regarding a franchise agreement and allow the town to move to the public service commission phase for a review of the plan to bring power to the technology campus.

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