News Based on facts, either observed and verified directly by the reporter, or reported and verified from knowledgeable sources.
North Castle officials plan on converting a two-acre parcel formerly owned by Verizon into additional parking in downtown Armonk to ease a shortage of spaces during high-volume hours.
A preliminary layout last week was unveiled by the town’s consulting engineer Joe Cremele of Kellard Sessions that also included landscaping, curbing and a new location for dumpsters to hold recyclables and garbage.
Under the configuration presented by Cremele at last Wednesday’s Town Board meeting, there would be room for about 49 parking spaces in the new lot located off of the Kent Place parking are near the North Castle Public Library.
Cremele said he included a six-foot landscaped buffer on an island between the existing Kent Place lot, which is located behind the stores on the west side of Main Street, and the new parking area. There would also need to be mitigation because there is about 21,000 square feet of wetland buffer that is expected to be disturbed, he said.
Another requirement would be for the town to obtain several easements.
“There are a number of private property towns here and there are a number of agreements that would have to take place,” Cremele said.
Additionally, there would be two compactors housed in the new area, one for garbage the other for paper and cardboard. There would also be a dumpster that would hold bottles and glass for recycling.
Town Board members were encouraged with advancing the plans. Supervisor Michael Schiliro said a parking study conducted by the town during the pandemic showed there are enough spaces in the aggregate in Armonk, they are not all in the right locations. For example, there are typically excess spaces on Old Route 22, but at peak times there is a shortage on or near Main Street, he said.
For years, the town had been pursuing the Verizon property as a logical solution to the parking crunch. The sale finally materialized last year.
“I’m hopeful we can make further improvements on the rest of the lot, but at least we can add additional downtown parking, which is what we need,” Schiliro said.
“I think you did a beautiful job,” Councilman Jose Berra told Cremele after his presentation. “I think this is really good and within the realm of things very easy to follow.
Cremele said he will next start to lay out the easements in the plan to definitively learn which property owners need to grant easements. Then Town Attorney Roland Baroni will look to execute those easements with the affected private property owners.
Town Administrator Kevin Hay mentioned that he expected the construction would begin next summer. It is not clear how long it may take to do the work, what it would cost or how the town is going to pay for it. Once Cremele submits firmer plans, the amount of time it would take and the cost might come into focus, Hay said.
Martin has more than 30 years experience covering local news in Westchester and Putnam counties, including a frequent focus on zoning and planning issues. He has been editor-in-chief of The Examiner since its inception in 2007. Read more from Martin’s editor-author bio here. Read Martin’s archived work here: https://www.theexaminernews.com/author/martin-wilbur2007/