A committee responsible for making recommendations that would update the Brewster Comprehensive Plan received a draft report from the village’s consultant on April 17.
The draft was presented to the Comprehensive Plan Update Committee by Tiffany Zezula, deputy director of land use at the Land Use Law Center at Pace University.
Zezula told the committee her draft report was based on several meetings with residents and surveys distributed to the public about what they felt the future direction of Brewster should be.
There were several common themes from residents expressed on the surveys and at meetings, Zezula said. Many residents highly value the village’s Metro-North station, she said. Many have chosen to live in Brewster “because of that station,” she said.
Many residents felt it was important to create additional parks and preserve open space, Zezula said. “That came up a lot,” she noted.
Residents expressed the desire to make downtown “a focal point” of Brewster, Zezula said. Residents also want a variety of businesses downtown and want new sidewalks and additional parking in the area, she said.
Many residents want the Green Street School to become a “mixed use development,” Zezula said. Residents want to “create some tax revenue from the building,” she said.
Zezula suggested that after reviewing her draft document the committee should work on strategies that could put the public’s ideas into place for an updated Comprehensive Plan. The committee agreed to her suggestion to inform residents about her report via e-mail, which would include a link to the report. The committee also agreed to continue to accept residents’ comments about the Comprehensive Plan update and hold an additional public hearing on the document in the fall.
Committee member Harold Lepler said the village needed to hire a firm to do a marketing study that would inform the community on what needed to be done and what the costs would be to implement their ideas for the future of the village.
The committee will hold their next meeting sometime in May and the discussion could include a review of the marketing study.
Brewster Mayor James Schoenig said much had been accomplished by the committee in period of a few months and was he was impressed by residents’ interest in the future of the village and the need to revise the Comprehensive Plan. “I am pleasantly surprised by the turnout we received at these meetings,” he said.
The Comprehensive Plan was last updated by the village board of trustees in 2004. A draft of the revised Comprehensive Plan is slated to be completed for the village’s board’s review in August or September.