The Clarence Town Board voted Wednesday evening to clarify the town zoning code’s definition of how density in multi-family residential developments can be calculated. But it was not without some dissent.
“Is that a clarification or a change?” developer David Huck asked Councilman Bernard J. Kolber, who proposed the measure, when he spoke during the public comment period.
“We passed an interpretation of the law,” Kolber said.
“It seems to me,” Huck said, “that you’re changing it. With all the attention it got at the last hearing and to slide through things here, that seems very deceptive to me. ... It’s an important topic for a lot of people and here it’s just been blown through.”
Kolber said after the meeting that the code’s multi-family maximum of eight dwelling units per acre had become a point of contention. If developers had a 10-acre tract and made eight acres of it commercial, he said, they felt they should be able to build up to 80 housing units on the remaining two acres.
“The Planning Board told us, ‘We can’t interpret this. This law is too ambiguous.’ So we’re saying that it’s eight units per acre [on the residential part of the parcel],” he said.
The vote on the measure was 4-1, with Supervisor David C. Hartzell Jr. breaking from the board’s usual unanimity.
“I liked the law the way it was,” he said after the meeting. “It was written to encourage commercial and residential density and that’s what it did.”
In other matters, the board approved signing an agreement with URS Corp. to do an access study of a proposed new Greiner Road entrance and exit to Eastgate Plaza on Transit Road. Benderson Development Co., which owns the plaza, will pay for the study. Residents on nearby streets oppose the plan.
In other matters:
• A plan for construction of about 80 units in the Waterford Village development north of Roll Road was approved.
• Dennis Priore was appointed to the Youth Board through Dec. 31, 2016, replacing Michele Mogavero.
• Four students, Magdaline Anderson, Victoria Cirillo, Alexander Raymond and Adam Singh, were reappointed to the board through next June 30. A new student member, Emma Switzer, also was appointed.
• Town Clerk Nancy C. Metzger reported that, beginning today, Goodrich Road will be closed for nearly two months between Lapp Road and Tonawanda Creek Road for replacement of the bridge over Black Creek. Work is expected to be completed by Sept. 19.
• The board authorized Highway Superintendent James Dussing to ask Erie County for permission to post no-parking signs on the north side of Wehrle Drive between Elma Road and North Maple Drive. Board members noted that parking on both sides of the highway for events at a bar and restaurant, Angry Buffalo at the Rose Garden, creates a traffic hazard.