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Group sues Village of Pittsford over future development at canal site

Posted at: 12/20/2012 5:10 PM
Updated at: 12/21/2012 2:16 PM
By: Berkeley Brean

The fight over a future canal site and more than 100 apartment units in Pittsford isn’t over yet.

A few weeks ago at a village board meeting, the board approved, by one vote, a special permit to build the upscale townhouses but now the people who have never liked the idea are suing the village over it.

The people behind the lawsuit have some serious concerns about the size and scope of the project.

“It's the largest project in the history of the village.” Robert Corby is the mayor of Pittsford. He voted against the special permit. “Anyone that looks at my record, I've been consistently working for these same issues for the last 20 years.”

But now he and the village are defendants in the lawsuit against the project filed by the Friends of Pittsford Village. It wants the court to void all approvals, saying the village violated the village code, the Open Meeting law, environmental rules and the general municipal laws.

The special permit was approved by the Village Board last month.

Here's what some of the people against it said then.

Jeff Thompson said, “The scope and the size is just too big for this area.” And Stacey Freed said, “IIt's far too large and no matter what they tell me there's going to be lots and lots of traffic.”

What they mean: The entrance to the project site is just over the canal bridge on Route 31. The mayor says the developer is making some changes. “There will be a new site plan and new architectural elevations. The developer hired a new architect. I haven't seen because they haven't been produced yet.”

News10NBC spoke with the developer, Chris DiMarzo, on Thursday. He said they already have people calling wanting to reserve a unit. He says he's paying for the environmental clean up himself.

They've proposed ways to deal with the traffic -- building a median to slow it down but it's not just speed, it's volume. Trying to make a left hand turn onto Monroe at that spot, is just about impossible.