GLENVILLE: Change of plans

Several town of Glenville residents spoke out at a public hearing on Wednesday, Feb. 7 on the proposed amendments to the Freemans Bridge master plan. The area is one of the town's hotspots for future development.

Town Planner Kevin Corcoran outlined the tentative changes, distributing a color-coded map indicating the possible revisions. The four major areas that would be changed are:

Approximately 42 acres of flood plain along Horstman Creek and the Dromme Kill originally targeted for preservation/conservation could be used for multi-family housing on the west side of Horstman Creek, and commercial/mixed use on the east side.

Approximately 30 acres south of the Boston and Maine Railroad and west of Horstman Creek could be changed from office/technology part to multi-family housing.

About 15 acres of land north of the power line easement and east of Freemans Bridge Road changed from multi-family housing to commercial/mixed use.

About 28 acres on both sides of Maple Avenue changed from multi-family housing to traditional neighborhood development.

The total effect of these proposed changes is relatively insignificant, said Corcoran. "About 57 acres would be 'upgraded' to a more intense proposed land use classification, while 58 acres would essentially be 'downgraded.' This is essentially a change in our blueprint for future development."

Town resident Neil Turner expressed his concerns over the board's methodology for setting aside acreage for land preservation, and the impact the new designations would have on the property owners.

"I'm a strong proponent of open space, but as the town changes land set aside for conservation to commercial use, they are trying to make it up somewhere else," said Turner. "They're trying to arbitrarily make all the colors come out evenly on the map. This imposes a restraint on someone else's land. Isn't there a better criterion for establishing land conservation zones?"

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