City Approves New Zoning District

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City Approves New Zoning District
By Bob Murphy

The Mechanicville City Council has passed a new zoning district as part of an amendment to its zoning ordinance.  A small group of citizens gathered at the City Council meeting on Wednesday, April 3rd at the Mechanicville Senior Citizen Center.  All council members were present as well.

The meeting began with commissioners’ reports, providing updates to the microenterprise grant program, South Street Hill reconstruction project, and upcoming civic events. The commissioners also introduced a new zoning district proposal, a police report, and a synopsis on the water and diaper donations from Mechanicville to flood victims in Schoharie.

Upon entering public hearings, the first order of business was approval of the new zoning district that would overlay the city’s light industrial park in the former rail yard.  The new district would not extend to other parts of the city.  Essentially, the new district, known as a planned development district, would make it easier for the city to attract developers to the land while simultaneously allowing the city to protect the rights of nearby landowners and the integrity of the natural environment.  The purpose of the new zoning district, known as a planned development district is listed as follows:

“In order to meet the objectives of this chapter and to encourage and promote the most attractive and economic development of land which under appropriate conditions may include a mixture of land use types not otherwise permitted, to encourage job-supporting and tax-producing new development planned in accordance with modern planning standards, to protect the quality and property values of existing development, to create a pattern of development which preserves unique natural features such as but not limited to outstanding natural topography and geologic features and prevents soil erosion, to increase the range of services and facilities available to serve the City’s present and future population and to otherwise promote and enhance the public health, safety and general welfare…”

Of the members of the public in attendance, a majority of them were there to represent their concerns as homeowners adjacent to the currently-vacant light industrial park.  For the most part, public concerns over noise and environmental pollution were addressed in a manner that was satisfactory to those concerned.  Summarily, the zoning ordinance amendment allowing for the new district was passed 5-0.  For more information on the new zoning district, please contact the City Clerk at 518-664-9884. A complete statutory description of the planned development district can also be obtained in the City Clerk Office.

Following passage of the planned development district, the commission approved a resolution to follow the state environmental quality review act as it pertains to the reconstruction of the South Street Hill and another resolution to approve the city’s payroll and voucher budget.  Both resolutions can be also obtained from the City Clerk Office.

The next City Council meeting will be held on Wednesday, April 18th at 3 PM in the Mechanicville Senior Citizen Center.

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