Tuesday, April 09, 2019

Plans resume for 600-home Hasidic development 

Plans for a 600-home development that could more than double the Village of South Blooming Grove's population have resumed after a long lag with the submission of a new draft environmental impact statement for the Clovewood project.

The proposal itself remains largely the same: a housing complex for the Satmar Hasidim that could have as many as 3,815 residents if an accessory apartment is built onto every house, according to the planners' estimates.

The new documents given to the village on Wednesday and posted online at www.clovewood.com offer deeper analysis of the plans in response to questions from village officials and their consultants about the initial impact statement filed nearly a year ago.

The homes would be clustered on a 140-acre piece of a 708-acre property off Clove Road and Route 208 that used to be the Lake Anne Country Club and that the developers, Keen Equities LLC, bought for $15 million in 2006.

They hope to finish construction within two years of getting approval, according to the new impact statement.

The Village Board and the Planning Board are overseeing the environmental review for the project, and must now determine if the new statement is complete after their professional consultants review the documents.

A planner, engineer, traffic expert and hydrologist will study the new materials and report their findings to the boards, Dennis Lynch, an attorney for the village, said Monday.

The developers plan to drill six wells to supply water to the homes and build a sewage treatment plant for the development's wastewater.

Residents would use an average of 377,400 gallons of water per day if every home has an accessory apartment, according to the new report, which raised the demand estimate of 270,000 gallons per day that was in the original impact statement.

The report calculates the six wells can produce 785,520 gallons of water per day, more than enough for the project.

Yet the developers also suggested connecting Clovewood to the Village of Kiryas Joel's water supply as a "reasonable and feasible" alternative to drawing groundwater - a prospect that they said might involve Kiryas Joel annexing the Clovewood property.

Clovewood also would send its sewage to Kiryas Joel instead of a newly built treatment plant under that annexation scenario, which faces at least one legal obstacle: Even if state law allows Kiryas Joel to annex land a few miles outside its borders, the village has pledged not to annex property from Monroe or Blooming Grove for at least 10 years under a 2017 court agreement with the United Monroe citizens group.


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