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Thursday, November 9, 2017

Yechiel Lebovits' Plan to stick 5,000 Chassidim on Route 202 & 306 gets blocked ...

In a major victory for Ramapo environmentalists, a state appellate panel has annulled a Town Board zoning change and Planning Board approvals for the former Patrick Farm, blocking a massive housing development proposed for the site.
The multiple legal decisions this week send a Scenic Development LLC's proposal to build 470-plus housing units on 206 acres along the Route 202/306 corridor outside Pomona back to the starting gate.
"As we hoped, the appellate court agreed that the town’s original reviews were flawed and is now forcing the town of Ramapo to revisit the environmental impacts for the zone change, essentially returning the property back to its original low-density designation," said Deborah Munitz, a board member with the environmental group Ramapo Organized for Sustainability and a Safe Aquifer, known as ROSA.
ROSA and other activists have led the fight to ensure Ramapo follows the environmental regulations involving Scenic Development's proposal. Monsey developer Yechiel Lebovits and his family own the property, the former Patrick Farm, which they purchased from Clarkstown for $7.5 million in 2001.
"ROSA, along with our partners, worked tirelessly for the last seven years so that our cases against the town of Ramapo and Scenic Development were ironclad," said Susanne Mitchell, the organization's director. "ROSA's research and fact-based advocacy throughout our numerous legal proceedings led to the positive outcome we had all hoped for."




A call to the Lebovits company was not returned this morning. Scenic Development attorney Terry Rice of Suffern did not return a telephone call seeking comment.
Acting Supervisor Yitzchok Ullman said Thursday that the town is committed to ensuring the Patrick Farm development oversight is above board and open to the public. He said the town will review the decisions by the appellate panel before deciding its response.
“We are committed to ensuring that zoning and planning decisions in the town of Ramapo are made in a way that is transparent, responsible and sustainable," Ullman said. "We will review the court’s decisions — as well as any future submissions that the developers should decide to make — to ensure that any development on this site meets that criteria and resolves the issues identified by the courts.”
Incoming supervisor, deputy town attorney Michael Specht, Ullman and other Town Board members have promised to first review and update the town's master plan for zoning. The review is expected to take place next year. Any zone change before the Town Board could be delayed into 2018.
The appellate panel decisions require the Ramapo Town Board and its planning agencies to revisit a zone change that increased the property's permitted housing density, which would affect the region's drinking water sources, wetlands and the Columbia Gas pipeline.
The decision returns the land to its two-acre zoning.
The judicial panel found the Town Board and Planning Board failed to look at the development's impact on the environment during the decade-long process. The panel found "the record establishes that the Planning Board did not take a hard look at the issue of wetlands delineations or make a reasoned elaboration of the basis for its determination regarding these issues.” 
At the time Lebovits purchased the property with family members, it was zoned for a single-family home on two-acre lots. At the developer's request, the Town Board in January 2010 rezoned the property to one-acre lots, and permitted multiple-family housing, which more than doubled the allowable units.
Joining ROSA in the legal fight against Scenic Development were Susan Shapiro, on behalf of her parents, and attorney Bruce Levine, on behalf of a local resident. 
Opponents have said the former Patrick Farm site includes wetlands that feed the Mahwah River, a source of drinking water for Rockland and Bergen counties. They also expressed concerns about the development's proximity to a natural gas pipeline and contend the size of the project is out of character for that scenic swath of fast-growing Ramapo.
Susan Shapiro, attorney for Rockland Environmental Group, who represented her late parents, developer Milton Shapiro and his wife, Sonya, called the court decisions  "an important win requiring the Town of Ramapo to comply with the laws."
She said the appellate judges annulled "Ramapo’s illegal approvals, which endangered public health and safety by allowing construction of high-density housing in close proximity to a pre-existing high pressure gas main and endangering a large portion of Rockland County’s drinking water supply.”
In the legal issue raised by Elizabeth Youngewirth, represented by Levine, and Pomona village, represented by the village's lawyer Doris Ullman, the appellate panel agreed that the Ramapo Town Board "failed to take a ‘hard look" at the environmental impact of placing the proposed development in close proximity to the existing Columbia Gas pipeline."
"The draft environmental impact statement contained only brief mention of the pipeline, which bisects the property, and Columbia Gas was omitted from the list of interested agencies," the panel wrote. 

13 comments:

Yeshiva of Singed Valley said...

https://iapps.courts.state.ny.us/fbem/DocumentDisplayServlet?documentId=mGRvLjTca/DTudCqGx4BSQ==&system=prod

Romanisher Ferd said...

They must be picking Specht's brain to see what kind of stunt they can pull to undermine the verdict. Specht has borrowed a toothbrush from Shalom Lamm as a good luck charm while he hashes this over. The toothbrush was previously used as an enema by Moishe Gabbai Friedman.

Anonymous said...

Why are you so happy ?
This will only force the chasidim to spread out to all neighboring villages eventually having enough votes to rezone them.
People have to live somewhere and if you say no to any development proposed, that won't decrease the need for more housing.
So get ready to sell your house you so much love and say goodbye to The deers and wild turkeys etc.
Or you can all ways try to reimplement the final solution the Nazis tried some 70 years ago.

Anonymous said...

Really?

Dusiznies said...

8:31
You sound like a developer that doesn't give two hoots about people.... The Yiddishe ooilim moved to Monsey to bring up children in an environment with space so that the children would be able to run around and be protected from city life ...but when greedy developers like you don't care about anything but money, and turn suburban life into a chaotic state .... just look at route 306 where there are developments built with children not having any where to play and keep running out into Route 306 itself .... look at Kearsing Parkway and see how guys like you cut thousands of trees with no regard to the environs....
You guys have blood on your hands and there is no hell hot enough for the likes of you ...
The solution is to build in a way to keep the look of Monsey and that can be done if you weren't so greedy!
Now I'll let you into a secret ...I am saying goodby to "the deers and turkeys etc.," cannot get away fast enough from the "tuna beigels" and the rest of the fakers....... I'm moving to Monroe ...

Barbara Levitt said...

I wonder why you didn’t sign your name to this, .. You should have signed it “coward”.

Anonymous said...

Yechiel Lebovits bought the property for a low price based on 2 acre zoning, paid off the town board to reduce to 1/4 acre multi-family
and made an instant profit on paper. An absolute shyster. Good for all it didn't work.

And when is Lamm's sentencing?

Thinking Yid said...

Dusiznieas, dont even bother debating these fools. People who think that what these developers are doing are obviously deranged. No logic or reasoning will change their minds. We escaped brooklyn, and now brooklyn came to us. After losing elections badly, it may be time to start looking for a new home...

Anonymous said...

Not sure where this came from "two acre zoning". In the 2004 Comprehensive Zoning law that followed the 2004 Comp Plan the land was rezoned from two acre zoning to one acre zoning with the recommendation for clustered development. That is where we are today. There are many possible solutions for this area. Hopefully the new board will do better than the old board. They will do better if more residents are involved. So stay involved. The developer got a gift. Any rezoning must be justified and of benefit to those who will be affected.

Anonymous said...

Wherever Jewish people settle, after 20 years they're children start to get married and look for housing nearby (walking distance)
Eventually their family grows and they look to buy a house in the neighborhood, as religious people we need to stay near established facilities schools, shopping, etc.
After 20 more years the 2nd generation is starting to marry off their kids and the whole cycle repeats itself.
In monsey we are now at that point, there is קע''ה over 600 weddings in monsey every year (just guessing) all these people need to live somewhere, you tell me exactly where? Give me an example of what you would consider a Good development? Do you really think you can stop natural growth?

Dusiznies said...

12:15
There are two things going on here.......
#! ..GREEDY developers!
#2 Housing shortage
WE live in a מדינה של חסד .... in גלות .... having said that ...we have to follow the rules ... which means following the zoning laws and heed Satmar's battle cry that we cannot "antagonize the goyim"
these are very serious issues because by not following these rules we cause a huge Chillul Hashem, and we cause anti-Semitism to rise ....
Yes we have a rising population ..B"H..... but the solution is not by giving in to the GREEDY developers who flaunt the laws and do not care about the housing shortage and do not care that Jews need a place to live ...if they did ....they would have allotted space in each development for children playgrounds, as it's done for the svartzas in the projects in the bronx!
They would also have left space a niche in each development so that busses can go in to pick up and drop off children alleviating the traffic crises ... but the GREEEDY developers do not care about traffic and do not care about the safety of the children but only care how many families they can stuff into a development ..
They also take advantage of the rental and selling situation.... for example .. the average price for these Condos are $750,000 ... yup .... the average price of a 4 bedroom house not in the development is $450,000 and the condos are built with the cheapest materials ... there is absolutely no insulation between floors and the people living downstairs complain of the noise level of the upstairs ....one should just peruse the "letters to the editors" in the local newspapers ...
The developers know to sell the houses to people who use their old Father-in-laws name for the house, and now the new owners rent it to themselves on section8 and can charge exorbitant rent fees to themselves and to others knowing that the naive government will pick up the tab...
then they look for GREEDY politicians that look away from these dangerous situations .. buy them off and vote with block votes ... and any politician that opposes their ideas is labeled an anti-Semite !
The solution is the following ....I live very close to these developments and have discovered that the families living in these developments have no intention of going to work ... therefore to alleviate the housing shortage...I propose that the developers either follow the local ordinances and zoning laws or start buying property in "Hutz in Plutz" far away ...somewhere north of Parksville since these people do not need the city for Jobs etc ... and that's my solution
or move to Israel where if you violate the zoning laws at least you don't make a Chillul Hashem

Dusiznies said...

12:15
An now I want to address this particular proposed development the "Patrick Farm Site"
Lebovitz wants to develop 470 "plus" housing units on 206 acres
are you kidding me?
There is no plan for infrastructure ,...there is no plan for getting rid of sewage .... there is no plan for playgrounds etc ...
and what does "plus" mean?????
We are talking about 8,000 people in a space of 206 acres?????????
No way !!!!

mjazzguitar said...

If they were Islamists they would have been given whatever they wanted.