Letter: Winter Club filling void is an absurd argument

To the Editor:

Regarding the proposed Winter Club and outdoor hockey rink proposed on Peaceable Street, I am utterly incredulous at the claims of developer Bud Brown. Claiming that this project is an opportunity to give back to Ridgefield or to somehow fill a void in this town is absurd.

Not only will this project destroy a beautiful Ridgefield neighborhood and damage the environment, it also does not serve the public good in any way. It is a club for 275 select families, presumably a number of them from out of town. Less than 1 or 2% of the population of Ridgefield itself is likely to be members. There is no benefit to the larger population of 26,000 residents.

Further, the project proposes to place an extremely water intensive use on land that has no access to town water. For goodness sakes, the land is zoned residential because the only water available is from a very limited aquifer. On top of that, the property actually borders the protected wetlands of Peaceable Refuge.

Common sense would dictate that a proposal to build a 12,500-square-foot clubhouse, with 106 open surface parking spaces, a full-sized outdoor hockey rink with 40 foot light poles, a four-lane bowling alley, five fully equipped locker rooms, and a club room with a 23-foot-long bar, does not belong in a residential neighborhood.

No one, including me, is against the idea of a Winter Club, or having another rink nearby. It should simply be located on appropriately zoned commercial land with the infrastructure, highway access, and town water supply necessary to make it successful. If Mr. Brown were to find such a location I believe everyone, including me, could enthusiastically support it.

Matthew Grossman

Ridgefield, Sept. 12