SARATOGA SPRINGS: Public talks comp plan

Spotlight Newspapers has obtained a copy of this e-mail. Contained in it was a bullet point that recommended the city "continue to pursue permitting of the proposed Saratoga Lake Water Source project to meet the city's long-terms needs for an economical, high quality and city-controlled source of potable water."

That bullet is missing from the draft that was disseminated for the public hearing.

"My concern is that it was there and now it's not," said Weihe to the board members. "Is this a Harry Potter moment, or what?"

Her husband, John Kaufmann, was more direct. "Does the city still support going to Saratoga Lake for water?" he asked.

Vice chairwoman of the board Nancy Goldberg said the bullet wasn't omitted out of malice and said its absence did not mean that the board did not endorse the Saratoga Lake water supply.

"This is a process that we're in the middle of," she said. "I don't understand why we're splitting hairs."

Other residents had concerns over the suggested building heights in the draft plan. Allowable building heights are regulated to a maximum of 70 feet on Broadway, down to 32 feet in other areas of the city. The maximum height of a building is determined by multiplying the width of the street by .8.

Some residents pointed out that some of the more narrow streets in the city would only allow for buildings that are 16 feet high.

Others said that the new height restrictions would simply be aesthetically unpleasant.

"This is a recipe for sameness," said George Olsen, a town of Saratoga resident who owns property in the city. "We need to look at the richness of the environment and not that one formula."

Audio of the public hearing can be heard at www.spotlightnews.com, in the "Sights and Sounds" area. A copy of the city's draft comprehensive plan can be found at www.saratoga-springs.org/docs/bpwebsite.asp""

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