Marlborough eyes apartments, houses – and a resort property

By Rob Sample
Posted 10/3/23

Two new site plans – one to construct four six-unit apartment buildings and another to revive a long-ago resort property – were aired at the Monday, October 2 meeting of …

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Marlborough eyes apartments, houses – and a resort property


Two new site plans – one to construct four six-unit apartment buildings and another to revive a long-ago resort property – were aired at the Monday, October 2 meeting of Marlborough’s Planning Board.

The new apartments being proposed would occupy a 7.3-acre lot at the end of Summit Drive, which is a short cul-de-sac near the east end of South Street. The applicant, Summit Drive Properties LLC, seeks to build four six-unit multifamily dwellings on the property. Each unit would be a two-bedroom apartment.

The parcel is behind two existing residential lots on the circular end of Summit Drive. Apartment residents would get to the new buildings via a proposed private roadway between those two residential lots.

Several Board members took issue with aspects of the site plan for the project, noting elements such as unclear signage for handicapped-accessible signage. But several were also uneasy with the concept of putting an apartment complex at the end of an eight-lot cul-de-sac.

“You can hit a golf ball from one of these apartments’ decks down to Route 9W,” noted Board Member Fred Callo. “Summit Drive is basically a dead-end street, and there will be 50 cars a day there [going to and from the proposed apartment complex]. Why aren’t we connecting it to 9W instead?”

Board Member James Garofalo pointed out, “There may be requirements in the town code on how many housing units can be put on a dead-end street.”

The engineer for the project - Matt Towne of Willingham Engineering of New Paltz – attended the meeting. Addressing Towne, Board Chairman Chris Brand noted that several elements were still missing from the Summit Drive application.

“The landscaping plan does not address the access drive, even though it is between two neighboring properties,” Brand said. “The project also needs to have either one more dumpster or for the dumpster to be moved to a more central location.”

The Board unanimously approved a resolution calling for the application and site plan to be circulated to other town departments for review. In particular, Brand noted that the plan would require review and comment from the water and sewer departments.

The resort-property proposal – now dubbed Some Place Upstate - would repurpose an existing set of cottages, a lodge building, and a barn at the end of Mount Rose Road. Patricia Brooks of Control Point Associates of Highland, the project’s surveyor, noted that decades ago it hosted visitors from New York City, as did many other similar properties in the area.

What’s in the name? “No clue … but my guess is that in today’s world, a lot of people from the city do want to go someplace upstate,” Brooks said.

The Board moved to put the application on hold pending review because of allegations that the site’s owner has hosted large events without first obtaining town approval to do so.

“We don’t have anything in writing about these allegations, from either the neighbors or from the code enforcement officer,” noted Brooks.

A two-lot subdivision on River Vista Drive was also aired at the meeting. This proposal would ultimately involve the construction of a three-bedroom house on a 4.6-acre lot and a four-bedroom house on a 2.4-acre lot. A public hearing for this proposal was set for November 6.

Among other business, the Board authorized Town Attorney Meghan Clemente to draft a letter of approval for a three-lot subdivision at 219-229 Mount Zion Road. That approval would contain the condition that any future construction on the largest of the three parcels would comply with the town’s rules governing construction along the town’s ridgeline and for steep parcels. Part of that parcel sits at 1,030-feet in elevation.