ROTTERDAM: Town hears plan for corridor

Rotterdam's study to revitalize the area of Hamburg Street and Curry Road is nearly complete.

Project manager Ian Law of Synthesis presented ways the town could rezone the area to promote the right type of growth at an informational meeting at Town Hall Thursday, Aug. 23.

Change is happening, and when you have a plan, it helps you react to that change in an appropriate way, Law said.

The study spans the area along Hamburg Street from Schenectady to Interstate 90 and Curry Road from Interstate 890 to Mohonasen High School. Currently the area is mostly zoned residential with a strip of commercial zone along Hamburg Street.

Town Planner Peter Comenzo said the current vacant storefronts and run-down properties might be a plus in redesigning the area.

"We have an open palette right now," he said. "This is a key time for planning and getting the town on the right track for the future development that will come in."

Taking into account the needs of the community and the neighborhood, Law proposed a few major rezones to the study area.

First, he said, the long-vacant Grand Union plot could be rezoned as mixed use/neighborhood center to promote small retail and professional businesses, along with loft-style apartments.

"We want to bring together live, work and play here," Law said.

Buildings would be about 50 feet tall, close together and would be pushed closer to the road with large sidewalks to incorporate outdoor cafes.

The area surrounding Fort Hunter and Curry Road could also be rezoned as a neighborhood center to promote the same type of feel but on a smaller scale with small shops and businesses. Law said post offices and libraries could also work in this area.

"These community centers provide more of a community feel," Supervisor Steven Tommasone said. "Rather than a commercial thoroughfare we want to create that small town atmosphere."

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