Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Zoning Board Meeting Jan 11th 2012

From Julie:

While this home is not within the bounds of our NA, it is quite close and as Kim says, the precedent which would be set if the variance request was to be approved is dangerous

From: Kim Alvarez, former HNA Vice Chair

 There is a very critical ZBA hearing on Wednesday January 11:
 #15 Ramsey Place (the old run down house that is set back from the road) is requesting a Use Variance to allow for a change of use from 1 family to 2 family -- they are using financial hardship as their reasoning.  The issues I have with this are:
  • This house is one of the oldest in the neighborhood.  It predates the laying out of streets along the New Scotland Plan Road (Toll road to Schoharie) by at least 40 years.  I'm still doing research but it may have been the farmhouse of the family that eventually sold the property that all our homes are now on.
  • With the exception of #1 Ramsey Place (which was built as a 2 family home) there are no other multi-family houses on Ramsey Place.  It is mostly owner-occupied, so this request will have a detrimental impact on the character and quality of life on the street.
  • The house was assessed at $231K in 2009, and today is assessed at $65K -- quite a big difference.  They are suggesting because of the run down condition of the house, it isn't worth the investment to repair it as a single family residence -- THIS IS A DANGEROUS PRECEDENT TO MAKE IN OUR NEIGHBORHOOD AND CITY. 
  • If the owners who don't live there could afford to purchase the house for well under market value and they were fully aware of the run-down condition, then they should not have the zoning laws bent for their benefit, especially using the "financial hardship" argument.   
 Peter Lynch is representing the owners/applicants.  I highly encourage everyone  to come and attend this Public hearing.  The meeting will be held at City Hall, 2nd floor, at 5:30 pm.

UPDATE 1/4/12:

note 15 Ramsey included in these documents

Doc 1
Doc 2
Doc 3
Doc 4
Doc 5 

See attached.

Bradley Glass
City of Albany
Department of Development & Planning
Division of Planning, Zoning and Land Use
200 Henry Johnson Boulevard
Albany, NY 12210

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