A neighbor who attended the Planning Commission meeting on Monday, March 12 sent me the following:
A new proposal at the former funeral home (aprox. across from Books & Memories). The same developer (from Cortland) who’s done some “Five Guys burgers & fries” proposes a “Carroza’s pizza & wings.” They would demolish and rebuild. They “require” a drive-thru, with in and out driveways. (They like to emphasize that they’d be reducing curb cuts from the existing 3 to only 2.)
They’re requesting a number of exceptions, including: building setbacks (front and sides), building coverage (12% of lot, versus 50% minimum), windows (22% of facade, versus 50-75%). In front of building, between driveways, they have some kind of sitting space they like to call a “vest pocket park(-like).” [The (mis-) use of buzz words is annoying.] This may or may not be an “amenity,” as it was described. Surely, it’s unusable space turned into an attempted selling point, in lieu of building closer to the sidewalk.
The hearing was left open to be continued on April 2nd.
Folks, if you don’t get to planning commission meetings in support of adherence to the overlay district guidelines, you’re going to get a James Street full of seas of asphalt, auto-centric design, a loss of walkability, a loss of what character remains on James. Building MUST take place up to the sidewalk. Period. The guidelines must be followed or you will end up with the waste land and its accompanying crime that took over South Salina at Ballantyne. Parking lots and drive-thrus are antithetical to the kind of human activity that keeps crime down. Drive through there sometime if you care at all about Eastwood. This is where it’s headed.
And do we really need yet more pizza and wings? It’s getting boring!