GUILDERLAND The Guilderland Central School District put the brakes on traveling down a private road to pick up children, which has spurred town officials to quickly make the road public.
The Town Board voted unanimously on Tuesday, Sept. 17, to acquire Stitt Road through eminent domain, but proceedings will not move forward until Oct. 13. The private road was used to access several quarries established along the road decades ago, and now fewer than a dozen homes sit along the secluded roadway.
Town Supervisor Ken Runion said about four years ago, the Town Board asked William M. Larned & Sons, Inc., to reach out to property owners along the right-of-way known as Stitt Road. Larned’s special use permit required him to turn the portion of roadway he owned over to the town. But there was a bump in the process, because approximately 1,400 feet of roadway was located off Larned’s property.
“Part of the reclamation of some of the quarries was that Stitt Road be upgraded and improved, a new Stitt Road was constructed, and then it would eventually be dedicated to the town,” Runion said. “That process has taken quite some time and there are two property owners along the right-of-way that Larned and company, which was responsible for improving Stitt Road and turning it over to the town, had not been able to get deeds to.”
Since Larned couldn’t acquire the necessary deeds, the town has decided to use eminent domain to acquire the land.
Runion said he received a call from a concerned parent about the school district declining to pick up their child on the private road and he confirmed that with the district. The district would not travel up the road unless it was owned and maintained by the town, according to Runion. Some residents claimed Larned did not properly maintain the road, leading to the district’s decision.