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Chappaqua Crossing: New Curley Plan; Town Hall Move Talks

Meeting set for Curley, Whole Foods representative and representation from developer; Greenstein announces "preliminary discussions" about town hall move.

A photo of Tom Curley's newest plan for Chappaqua Crossing.
A photo of Tom Curley's newest plan for Chappaqua Crossing.
This story was originally published on January 7, 2014

At Monday night's New Castle Planning Board meeting, board member Tom Curley presented a new layout proposal for Chappaqua Crossing, the second one that he has made in response to proposed retail for the site.

Curley's latest plan is similar to one he presented last May, in that it has buildings arranged along a main street-style corridor, which would be the main road from the Route 117 entrance to the cupola building. However, his revised iteration accommodates Whole Foods, which is developer Summit/Greenfield's proposed grocery store tenant. In Curley's plan, the Whole Foods structure would be shifted about 100 feet and moved closer to the site's cupola building.

Whole Foods' involvement was disclosed in November by the developer and a new layout was submitted as a result. That layout, which is officially called a preliminary development concept plan (PDCP), calls for a 40,000-square-foot structure near Roaring Brook Road and with a large parking lot between it and the main driveway.

In a work session early last month, planning board members panned the latest layout, with the parking configuration not being embraced. Curley's new plan involves creating a series of smaller parking lots that would be adjacent to stores.

Curley's concepts incorporate what is called Traditional Neighborhood Design (TND), a style that is of interest of the board.

Curley's new plan could receive attention on Tuesday at a meeting that he will go to with representation on behalf of Summit/Greenfield and Whole Foods, a gathering that was disclosed to the board. The board also voted unanimously to give Curley an advocate role for a meeting with the applicant.

The board meeting was a work session as part of its ongoing advisory role for the PDCP and the second of its kind since a town board referral was made late last year. At the meeting, Chairman Richard Brownell also did a recap of issues raised at previous board meetings.

Speaking about where he stands on the project in general, Curley is not weighing in on the "should" for the matter, but rather he is trying to get a more desirable outcome.

Greenstein: 'preliminary discussions' for moving town hall

What will also be significant for the retail proposal is the change in the town board's composition, with the first meeting of three new members scheduled for Wednesday.

New Supervisor Rob Greenstein, who ran on a 3-candidate ticket in opposition to what the developer proposed, announced in an email to local media that he and his colleagues were talking with the developer.

"We have been speaking with Summit Greenfield.   We are working together to come up with solutions that are both a win for our community and a win for them.  We will focus on the big picture and consider our downtown hamlets and Chappaqua Crossing together."

Greenstein, whose email addressed several town issues, also mentioned interest in moving town hall to Chappaqua Crossing, an idea that he expressed interest in before becoming supervisor.

"It should be noted that we have had preliminary discussions with Summit Greenfield about moving town hall to the Cupola building.   If residents think this is a good idea, this could be a game-changer!   It would allow us to add retail and residential to downtown Chappaqua in the current town hall location.   Most modern urban planners deem the proper way to improve downtowns is to add retail and residential density such as this."

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