To the Editor:
We finally got to hear from the town peer review and the Peaceable neighborhood attorney and experts at the Sept. 25 hearing on the Winter Club special permit application. What did we find out?
We found out that there are serious environmental, engineering and town planning issues with the project. We found out that these issues have been overlooked or ignored by the applicant. Some issues are due to the fact that the property is surrounded by wetlands. Some issues are due to the fact that the natural terrain has contours and ledge that would require blasting, moving of over 1,000 truckloads of earth and rock and then removing 450 truckloads.
The applicant miscalculated required parking (probably because there is nowhere to fit additional parking).
As the neighbors have known all along, the peer review town planner cast serious doubt as to how this project is harmonious with the neighborhood. All of this was done by dissecting the plan and stating the facts. Some of the infirmities can be fixed (but not within the timeframe of the Hearing) and some cannot be fixed. The applicant must withdraw the application. The only way this project passes regulations is by pretending it does.
There is no doubt that the Ridgefield Winter Club has poorly chosen a location to build. There is also no doubt that it would not be appropriate in any residential neighborhood.
This type of high impact complex is only appropriate in a business district. I recall an attorney that said “hey, I’ve got an idea — let’s go with the truth.”
The truth is the Planning and Zoning Commission must deny this application if it’s not withdrawn and the Winter Club should search for an appropriate location in order to fulfill its dream.