John Fazer of Latham Water addresses CPAC Committee. (Kassie Parisi/Spotlight News)
COLONIE — Members of the town’s Comprehensive Plan Review Committee met for the fifth time a few days before Christmas to listen to presentations regarding the town’s water and sewage services. While gathered, they also analyzed the information gathered from residents during a series of public hearings.
On Wednesday, Dec. 21, the committee met in the Public Operations Building to review the main comments it compiled during the six, geographically-targeted public hearings it recently held at locations around the town.
According to the committee, the main positives that residents attributed to living in the town were the quality of municipal services, a diverse tax base, the school districts, the large amount of parks and recreational centers, its rich cultural history, and the wide variety of housing options. People also noted that they enjoyed the town’s central location and its access to public transportation.
Yet, many of the things listed as positives seemed to be double-edged swords, as many residents also cited them as concerns.
Traffic congestion was an issue that came up during each of the six meetings. The need for better transportation alternatives, more open space conservation efforts, and more control over the impact of development on the environment were also listed as issues. Many residents also requested that the town adopt more stringent design regulations, and requested that neighborhood character be maintained. Also noted by the committee was the density and character of new development, lack of affordable housing, and a sometimes hostile line of communication between town officials and residents. Going forward, the committee is going to find out what tools the town has to deal with the listed issues.
Two presentations were also given during the meeting; the first by John Fazer of Latham Water District, and the second by Chretien Voerg, from the Division of Pure Waters.
Fazer spoke about the town’s water service capacity and areas, the basic mechanics of its water treatment plants and pump stations, the Latham Water District’s capital planning process, major projects to be completed in 2017, and existing Generic Environmental Impact Statements (GEIS).
Voerg’s presentation centered on the Town’s sewer services. The presentation outlined the goals of Colonie Pure Waters, system capacity and purpose, and the division’s capital planning process.
The committee’s next meeting will be held on Wednesday, Jan. 18, during which its members will hear a presentation about the town’s GEIS. There will also be a committee meeting on Feb. 15.