Weekly Feature

2010-08-18 / Editorial

Despite concerns, patio homes are positive

The town’s decision Monday to approve the rezoning of 196 and 214 Casey Road, which will allow a patio home development to be built on the property, is a benefit to the community.

During the July 12 public hearing, attorney Jeff Palumbo said there has been an increased demand for patio homes, especially in the Town of Amherst.

While there may be several negatives associated with the development, we feel there are far more positives.

Palumbo said the homes conform with Amherst’s comprehensive plan and will boost taxes paid to the town and are generally purchased by empty-nest couples.

We feel that if these patio homes keep longtime residents in the town it is a positive scenario. Residents should not be looking to move to another community if they are going to downsize their home.

The empty-nest couples are now able to remain active in the town’s progress because they are adding to the tax base and maintaining their residency in Amherst. Also, the development of patio homes could lead to people from out of town purchasing a residence in the town.

While we feel the residential concerns of drainage issues are certainly warranted, we also feel the developer adding a 100-foot buffer to the property makes a statement. To us, it says that all of the concerns — those by residents and town government — are being considered.

The developer is willing to work with the community, which is commendable. The proposal was not pushed through without consideration for the neighbors.

There may be no way to make everyone in the town happy with the proposal and we agree with Town Councilmember Barbara Nuchereno’s statement during the meeting that accomodating zoning is a difficult balance to find.

“This was a difficult decision I think for all of us because there was a lot of concerns for everyone,” Nuchereno said. “We have to keep in mind that we are addressing the needs not just of neighbors right there, but of the town as a whole.”

The patio home development will benefit the community because it will add to the aesthetics of the community and will be maintained on a regular basis by paid landscaping crews. Property maintenance will not be an issue.

We hope the developer continues to work closely with the town as well as the residents — it has worked extremely well thus far.

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