Posted at: 04/09/2013 3:31 AM
Updated at: 04/09/2013 6:12 AM
By: Courtesy Messenger Post Newspapers
A plan to rezone property east of Middle Cheshire Road to a Planned Unit Development in order to construct an inn and spa was nixed Monday night by the Canandaigua Town Board.
"The PUD concept is no longer on the table," said Town Supervisor Sam Casella. The vote was unanimous among the Town Board members.
The proposal was to change the zoning on the property - currently a Southern Corridor Residential (SCR-1) - to allow the construction of the Everwilde Inn and Spa. The facility would be on 143.5 acres on Middle Cheshire Road - south of Whitecliff Drive and north of Foster Road - and would include 50 hotel rooms with expansion for 50 more, a restaurant and meeting space.
While the property won't be rezoned to a PUD, the inn and spa project is not kaput.
Project spokesperson Howie Jacobson said the Everwilde Advisory Committee will regroup and formulate a new plan to once again come before the Town Board.
The main concern for Town Board members was that the project proposal would not fit in with the culture of that area of the town. Additionally, the proposal did not fit the town's requirements for a PUD, said board member Terry Fennelly.
"That area is residential, it's farming," Fennelly said. "We'd like to see it stay in that state."
Fennelly's comments were met with applause by the crowd of more than 100 people in the audience - some of whom had to listen from the hallway because the meeting room was past capacity. Most of the residents present did not want to see the proposal become a reality.
"None of the (PUD) criteria qualifies for this development," said town resident, and former Town Board member, Oksana Fuller. "It has no merit to be before the board."
The property in question neighbors land at 4060 Middle Cheshire Road that was preserved as farmland as part of a purchase and acquisition of development rights (PDR) program.
In a letter sent to the Town Board prior to Monday's meeting, Attorney Jerry Goldman listed the hotel address as 4060 Middle Cheshire Road - which is owned by Wyffels Farm LLC. During the meeting, Goldman said that was an error. There is no current address for the proposed project - that would be assigned by the town at a later date, said an Everwilde spokesperson.
Wyffels Farm LLC is not involved with the proposal. The owners of the property where the proposed inn and spa would be located are Todd and Laura Cook, Jacobson said.
Despite the town's decision, Jacobson said he was encouraged and remains optimistic about the project. He noted that before the meeting, 27 residents - mostly located on Ruskin Road - sent a letter to Town Board member Pam Helming that supported the addition of the inn and spa.