Zoning commission extends hearing for bed and breakfast, club expansion

Two speakers down, 37 more to go.

That was the result of Tuesday night's Planning and Zoning Commission which drew a large crowd in opposition to a proposed bed and breakfast on Circle Drive. 

The commission heard from applicants Thomas and Catherine Savoca and attorney Peter Olson, who represents neighbors Rob and Claudia Pacifico, but ran out of time to hear from a majority of the residents who signed up to speak at the public hearing.

Now, neighbors must wait until after Election Day — the hearing has been extended to Wednesday, Nov. 8 — to voice their displeasure.

“This is not an appropriate location for a B&B, [it's] in a residential zone,” said Olson in his testimony.

Of the 39 speakers, only two spoke at the two-and-a-half hour hearing.

In her presentation, Cathy Savoca acknowledged her neighbors’ concerns.

“Change can be hard,” she said, “especially when it deals with what is for most people — including us — our single largest financial asset.”

Boys club expansion

It wasn't the only public hearing the zoning commission held Tuesday night.

A plan to expand the Central Business District by nearly seven acres was also on the agenda, but received less time — and public comment — than the controversial bed and breakfast.

Nonetheless, the planners also motioned to extend that hearing until Tuesday, Nov. 21, after hearing testimony from attorney Bob Jewell who is representing the applicant, the Ridgefield Boys and Girls Club.

“I didn’t think the town would get involved trying to build commercial buildings to compete with private investments, but I’m a pretty conservative, libertarian kind of guy,” he told the commission.