Skip Navigation

Town of Cortlandt, NY

Email a link to this web page.
Simply fill out this form and click Send.
*Fields in Red are required.
*You must enter a valid email
*You must enter a valid email.
Town of Cortlandt SealGo to our home page

Latest News

Please select a year.

Public Hearing - CBD

Release Date: November 20, 2006



            PLEASE TAKE  NOTICE that the PLANNING BOARD of the TOWN OF CORTLANDT will conduct a Public Hearing pursuant to a referral from the Cortlandt Town Board requesting a recommendation to amend the text of the Town of Cortlandt Zoning Ordinance (Chapter 307) to delete Section 307-94 ( Planned Village Development) and enact in its place a new Section 307-94 for a Community Betterment District.

Said Public Hearing will be held on Tuesday, December 5, 2006 at 8:00 P.M., or as soon thereafter as possible, in the Vincent F. Nyberg General Meeting Room at Cortlandt Town Hall, 1 Heady Street, Cortlandt Manor, New York, to receive public comments and input, with respect to the proposed amendments to the Town of Cortlandt Zoning Ordinance (Chapter 307) as follows:

Delete Section 307-94 (Planned Village Development) under Article XV (Special Zoning Districts) and enact in its place a new Section 307-94 for a Community Betterment District.

Section 307-94. Community Betterment District (CBD)

A.  Intent and purposes. It is the intent and purpose of this section to create a Community Betterment District (CBD) on one or more designated sites and in proper locations, so as to provide:

(1)   Variety of housing types.  Provide the opportunity for the creation of a wider variety of housing types including affordable housing, in the town,ranging from single-family of those persons working and living in the Town of Cortlandt, including both elderly and young households, families of moderate income and small families.

(2)   Creative use of large tracts.  Encourage the creative use of large tracts located along the following major State Highways:  Route 6, Route 202/35, Route 9A. Establish a more desirable living environment than would be possible through traditional subdivision in accordance with the conventional standards established elsewhere in this article.

(3)   Flexibility of design and development.  Permit flexibility of design and development in such a way as to promote superior land planning design, greater economy, efficiency and convenience in the arrangement of land uses and their supporting infrastructure, preserve open space and protect floodplains, wetlands, steep slopes, biodiversity, trees  and other natural features.

(4)   Service and utilities.  Encourage orderly and well-planned development of a scale and location that will make it feasible to construct a comprehensive package of supporting utilities, services and facilities, active and passive recreation facilities, a stormwater control and retention system, etc., so as to achieve developments which are environmentally, physically, visually and economically superior.

(5)   Traffic circulation.  Encourage orderly development of sites with substantial frontage on state highways to provide safe, efficient access and traffic circulation.

(6)   Master Plan.  Promote a development pattern in harmony with the objectives of the Town's Master Plan.

(7)   Preservation.  Maximize the preservation of slopes over 15%, wetlands,         flood-prone areas, historic structures or areas, unique, natural or geographic formations, rare vegetation or habitats of endangered wildlife, lakes, ponds, significant recreational areas or resources, trails, bikeways, pedestrian routes and significant scenic routes, particularly ridge lines, water bodies and mountains. Conservation easements shall be established to protect and preserve environmentally sensitive land in a manner so as to preserve the natural and scenic qualities of open lands and creating connectivity with adjacent open space, when applicable.

(8)   Adequate Review.  Provide adequate review and supervision of development by requiring both conceptual and specific plan approvals for properties rezoned by legislative action to the CBD zone.

(9)  Add to the Recreational inventory of the Town.  Projects of this nature will be required to either propose new public recreation areas or to pay a recreation fee as required under Section 265-11 of the Subdivision Ordinance.

(10)    Protect NYC DEP Watershed Properties.  CBD's will not be entertained by the Board for any parcel of land that is wholly or partially within any NYC DEP Watershed  regulated area. 

(11)    Assisted Living.  To address a potential need to accommodate less independent individuals, allow CBD's to be created at a higher density for the purposes of "assisted living" within 1000 feet of the Hudson Valley Hospital Center on Route 202 on parcels greater than 10 acres.  Allow a limited amount of medical type space (pharmacy/doctor's office) which would be accessory to the assisted living use. 

B.  Eligibility. This article creates a CBD Zone and sets forth standards under which properties shall be considered eligible for legislative consideration for possible rezoning into the CBD Zone. 

(1)   The lands proposed for rezoning may consist of one or more parcels totaling 25 or more contiguous acres. At least one of the parcels constituting the lands proposed for rezoning must possess at least 100 feet of frontage and access on a state highway.  State Highways are: Route 6, Route 202/35, and Route 9. The lands proposed for rezoning must also meet the other criteria and qualifications set forth in this article.

(2)   A minimum of 10% of the final unit count shall meet the Westchester County definition of affordable housing.  In addition, a minimum of 10% of the units shall be offered at "below market" prices as determined by the Town Board at the time of the approval.  Town of Cortlandt residents shall have preference for the "below market" and "affordable" units.

(3)   While only lands considered eligible under these criteria may be considered for placement within the CBD Zone, there shall be no presumption that lands so considered eligible will ever be formally rezoned into the CBD Zone.  The decision to rezone, or to decline to rezone, any particular properties into the CBD Zone, is a purely legislative determination entirely within the legislative discretion of the Town Board.   The Town Board shall have the right to reject any petition for CBD rezoning at any stage of the proceedings.  The Town Board shall also have the authority to rezone lands into the CBD Zone as a direct action, in the absence of a petition.

C.  Uses within the CBD Zone.

(1)   Residential uses.  Detached, semidetached or attached one family dwelling.

(2)   Nonresidential uses.  Active and passive park and recreational areas, open space and activities, including swimming pools, tennis courts, ball fields, skating rinks, playgrounds, walkways, bikeways, nature trails and similar structures and other non-residential recreational facilities, either public or private.

(3)   The Town Board may consider commercial uses, retail shops, personal service shops, professional offices and small grocery stores to be included within the project area.

      D. Accessory Uses.  Accessory uses permitted in the CBD Zone shall be limited to the following: playground equipment; pools and cabanas; tennis courts; gazebo(s); home occupation with no non-resident employee; clubhouse; garage; storage shed

      E.  Development standards and controls.

(1) Density:  At the time of any rezoning of a parcel into the CBD Zone, The Town Board shall set the density in accordance with this section.

(a)  The base density in a CBD shall be three (3) units or up to a maximum of six (6) bedrooms per acre. 

(b)   However, the Town Board shall have the authority with a super vote where a minimum of four out of the five Town Board members vote in the affirmative, to allow density of up to five (5) units or up to a maximum of ten (10) bedrooms per acre where, in its sole discretion, it finds that a clear public good is being provided which addresses and mitigates both of the impacts identified in the draft generic environmental impact statement e.g. groundwater contamination and traffic congestion.

Examples of such public good that would be considered by the Town Board include an increase in affordable housing, provision or facilitation of availability of municipal or central water and sewer facilities to serve an extended area and provision for material transportation enhancement, such as a bypass road or traffic intersection improvements, which would directly improve traffic congestion. 

            (c) For purposes of density calculation, all acreage, including lands donated or dedicated to municipal purposes, shall be included.  It should be noted that the applicant must adhere to all provisions of Chapter 259 - Steep Slopes and Chapter 179- Wetlands Ordinance, and biodiversity guidelines and all other environmental regulations that may apply.

(2)   Minimum lot dimension.

(a)    Single-family detached units.  In no case shall single-family detached housing units be placed on lots smaller than 1/8 acre or 5,000 square feet.

(b)   Multi-Family, attached & semi-detached units (townhouse, condominium, co-operative, rentals).  In no case shall the total number of units in a multi-family, attached, semi-attached building exceed (6) units. 

(3)   Bulk and Area Requirements not addressed in this CBD Ordinance will be established by the Planning Board for each project as part of Site Development Plan Approval.

(4)   Building height.  The maximum permitted building height within a CBD shall be 35 feet.

(5)   Maximum coverage.  The maximum permitted gross building coverage on any CBD site shall be 20%.

(6)   Screening and Buffering. The minimum buffer area  shall be 100 feet as measured from the property boundary of the CBD to the nearest structure and/or improvement.  In reviewing the development plan, the Planning Board shall consider the setback and proposed screening of parking and active recreation areas and may require buffer areas of up to 150 feet.  Buffer and screening areas shall be landscaped or left in their natural state, where appropriate.  The Planning Board may require additional landscaping to screen utility buildings, refuse collection areas, cooling systems and other similar installations and features. The Planning Board as part of Site Development Plan Approval, may modify the requirements this subsection, when it determines that the specific circumstances of a particular site make adherence to the requirements of this subsection unwarranted or impractical and require alternative buffering means which achieve the purposes of this subsection. The reasons for any such modifications must be expressed and placed into the official record of the Planning Board.

(7)   Open space and recreation areas.  At least  one-third (1/3) of the gross acreage of any CBD site shall consist of land which is used for recreational purposes and/or preserved as permanent open space.     

(8)   Unit design considerations.  For CBD's with attached and semi-detached units, in order that such subdivisions will be properly planned in relation to the community and personal needs of people, the following design elements shall be considered by the Planning Board in addition to the specific provisions of the land subdivision regulations and the normal factors examined in the site plan review:

(a)    Need for personal privacy.  Visual privacy shall be preserved for residents through the proper design of rear yards and/or patio spaces. Proper screening through the use of vegetation, fencing and partially enclosed patios shall be provided. 

(b)   Need for maintaining the scale of building to ensure compatibility with natural and man-made surroundings.  In no case shall the total number of units in a building exceed six (6) to ensure that  semi-detached units will be compatible with the character of surrounding development and to ensure a pleasant environment for the residents of such units through maximizing views and by providing a close relationship to immediately adjacent open space at the sides of units as well as to the front and rear.

(c)    The Planning Board may, where it deems necessary, limit the number of dwelling units per building to less than six.

(d)   With the exception of patio's or decks, the size of the building shall not be allowed to increase for any reason after approvals are given.

(9)   Layout design considerations:  The need for preserving existing neighborhood identity and community character.  The Planning Board shall consider the layout of small neighborhoods or clusters within the development, each having some open space immediately surrounding it, as a goal of proper site planning so that a massive concentration of units, with little or no differentiation, can be avoided.

(10)    Vehicular circulation system and traffic access.  All streets and driveways within a CBD shall be designed to adequately serve their intended traffic function and the anticipated volume of traffic of the development

(11)    Pedestrian circulation system.  In each CBD, a pedestrian circulation system shall be designed and installed in addition to the vehicular circulation system, which is sufficient for the needs of CBD residents. Such a system might be composed of paved and unpaved walkways and bikeways of appropriate width, design and location to serve their intended function.

(12)    Add to the Recreational inventory of the Town.  Projects of this nature will be required to either propose new public recreation areas or to pay a recreation fee as required under Section Section  265-11 of the Subdivision Ordinance.

(13)    Protect NYC DEP Watershed Properties.  CBD's will not be entertained by the Board for any parcel of land that is wholly or partially within any NYC DEP Watershed  regulated area or within 1000 feet of any State or County Park.

(14)    Utilities and services.

(a)    Underground lines.  All televisions, power and communication lines, as well as water, sewer and storm drainage lines, shall be installed underground in the manner prescribed by the regulations of the government agency or utility company having jurisdiction.

(b)   Approval.  All buildings within CBD's shall be served by a public central water and sewage treatment systems as approved by the appropriate government agency or agencies having jurisdiction thereof.

(c)    Future needs.  Where facilities are provided, they shall be planned in such a way as to anticipate future utility needs, and wherever reasonably feasible, shall be sited to reduce the capital costs associated with any future central utility construction.

(d)   Television hookups.  Television hookups shall either be by cable television or alternate wireless systems.

(e)    Refuse collection.  The CBD shall provide an adequate means of collection and storing refuse including the agreement to provide compactors and a centrally located refuse collection site on premises. Any outside storage and garbage shall be in centrally located containers designed to prevent rodent infestations and shall provide sufficient screening as determined by the Planning Board.

(f)      Cooling systems.  Cooling systems shall be designed so as to minimize adverse aesthetic impact and noise.

(g)    Surface water runoff.  Surface water retention facilities shall be developed so that the rate of stormwater runoff after construction is no greater than the rate of runoff prior to development.  Furthermore, all Stormwater II state regulations shall apply.

(h)    Placement of utilities.  Where possible, all utilities shall be placed within the right-of-way, and all possible steps shall be taken to assure ease of future maintenance.

(i)      Energy efficiency.  The plan for development of any site within CBD shall be designed, constructed and arranged in such a way as to promote energy efficiency and encourage the use of alternative energy sources such as geo-thermal and active or passive solar systems to achieve a home energy rating of 85% or higher on a scale created under the home energy rating system established pursuant to the National Home Energy Rating Technical Guidelines issued by the National Association of State Energy Officials, dated September 19, 1999.

All new residential construction, single family detached units, multi-family, attached and semi-detached units (townhouse, condominium, co-operative, rentals) and all permitted commercial construction shall achieve this energy star compliance via:

[1] Utilization of a certified Building Performance Institute(BPI)contractor.

[2] All electrical appliances shall be an Energy Star labeled unit, if available on the market at the time of building permit issuance. 

[3] Any combination of energy alternative sources, design, and construction standards of NYSERDA to achieve the home energy rating of 85% or higher.

Certificate of Occupancy issuance by the Town will require the developer to obtain at their sole cost and expense a Labeled Qualification Form required by NYSERDA which shall be submitted to the Town Department of Technical Services Code Enforcement Division.

(15) Affordable Component.  A minimum of 10% of the proposed units must meet the   definition of the Westchester County Affordable Housing Guidelines.

F.  Pre-Application Procedure.

The applicant may, prior to formal submission of his CBD application, meet in a pre-application conference with the Town Board and/or Town staff to review the requirements and procedures defined herein and to discuss the general planning concepts for the proposed development. 

G.     Contents of Application.

The application for Rezoning and Site Development Approval shall consist of the following:

CBD Development Plan.  The CBD Development Plan shall be drawn at a scale of not less than one inch equals 100 feet and may consist of one or more sheets indicating the following information:

(1)   Ownership.  Property lines and the names of all adjoining streets and property owners.

(2)   Site & Neighboring uses.  A map and photographs showing the uses of land on the site and adjacent to the site.  A location map showing roads, parcels buildings and zoning districts within 500 feet of the proposed site.

(3)   Applicant and owner.  The name and address of the applicant, the property owner, and if the applicant is other than the property owner, evidence of his authority to act, and name and address of the planner, engineer, architect, surveyor and/or other professionals engaged to work on the project.

(4)   Topography.  Topographic information, including contours with a vertical interval of no more than two feet and shall be in 1929 NYSVD

(5)   Features.  Existing natural and man-made features, including, streams, wetlands, significant outcroppings, stone walls, floodplains, slopes over 15%, slopes over 30%, buildings and other improvements.

(6)         Circulation.  The proposed elements of the vehicular and pedestrian circulation system. Land Use Plan.  A land use plan showing the proposed uses of the site, including open spaces and recreation area(s), the location of residential areas, their type, size and composition, any area of nonresidential use, sites reserved for public utilities, etc.

(7)   Land Use Plan.  A land use plan showing the uses proposed on the site including open spaces and recreation area(s). The location of residential areas, their type, size, composition and any area of non-residential use, site reserved for public utilities, etc.

(8)   Shadow plan.  Shadow plan indicating shadows cast by all proposed buildings at the winter solstice (December 21), for the purposes of assuring access to sunlight.

(9)   Utilities and services.  The nature and location of all utility and service systems and facilities, including sewer, water, storm drains, public utilities, refuse collection and antenna hookups.

(10)     Written statement.  The written statement accompanying the CBD Development Plan shall consist of a text description of the proposed plan indicating how it will serve to implement the intent and purpose of such developments as set forth in this section, a preliminary analysis estimating the various quantitative elements of the plan, including the number of residential dwelling units (by type) calculated in accordance with the allowable density formula, the amount of nonresidential floor space, the number of off-street parking facilities, as well as the types of planned recreation facilities, proposals for the construction,  operation and maintenance of all recreation facilities, open space, parking areas, walkways, utilities, roads and other common lands and facilities will be assured.  The statement shall include a table or listing showing how each of the development requirements of this article has been met in the proposed plans.

(11)     Staging Plan.  A proposed plan indicating the approximate staging of building construction and related improvements within the CBD, including the general order of construction and the estimated timing of each stage.  The staging plan shall be designed to assure that future residents of the first sections of the CBD shall have adequate services, including all utilities, streets, recreational facilities and   landscaping, to suit their needs, even if future stages do not materialize.

(12)     Environmental documents.  The application must in all respects comply with the New York State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQR).  A full Environmental Assessment Form shall be submitted to the Planning Board.  If determined necessary, an EIS will be prepared in accordance with the requirements of SEQR, which will describe the anticipated physical impacts of the proposed development, including any negative impacts that may result and actions planned by the applicant to mitigate them.

(13)     3D Model. The Planning Board and/or Town Board may require the applicant to prepare a 3D model of the proposed building(s) for review by the Boards.

(14)     List of approvals required.  A list of approvals required from various governmental agencies prior to proceeding with the first stage and any subsequent stage of development

(15)     Fee.  The application and supporting documentation shall be accompanied by a non-refundable filing fee of $5,000.   If the application is referred to the Planning Board for further consideration, the Planning Board application fee shall be set from time to time by the Town Board.  Currently it is recommended at the time of the adoption of this ordinance of $1,000 per unit.  In addition, if an EIS is required, an escrow deposit will be set in accordance with SEQR.  Site plan review for each phase of development may require additional fees.

(16)     25 copies of all of the above shall be submitted.

H.  Approval Process.

Step 1:  Submission of the CBD application to the Town Clerk.

The applicant shall submit his application and fee of $5,000 for formal legislative rezoning of the CBD Zone and Site Development Plan Approval to the Town Clerk who shall place it on the next available agenda of the Town Board. 

      Step 2:  Preliminary Town Board Action:  The Town Board will make a determination of the completeness of the application after a review with appropriate departments.

      Step 3:  If the Town Board wishes to advance application, the CBD application and is referred to the Planning Board with or without the Town Board's suggestion for offsite betterments.

      At this step, the applicant is required to pay an additional fee of $1,000 per residential unit or $2 per square foot for commercial component, if any.

(1)   Other referral.  To further assist in its rezoning review, the Town Board and/or Planning Board may refer the proposed CBD Development Plan any such agencies or officials of the town, county or state government as the Board may determine appropriate.

     Step 4:  Review of the CBD application and Site Development Plan by the Planning Board.

     The CBD Application and Site Development Plan application is referred to the Planning Board for their full environmental (SEQRA) review and recommendation to the Town Board.  During this step, if the Town Board deems it necessary, it may schedule additional Joint Planning Board/Town Board meetings. 

      Upon completion by the Planning Board of a full SEQRA Review, including the adoption of a Findings Statement, the Planning Board will then recommend to the Town Board that the CBD be approved or denied. Said recommendation shall include:

(1)   Legal assurances.  Each application for detailed site plan approval shall be accompanied by appropriate legal documents as may be necessary to provide for and assure that continued proper future maintenance and ownership responsible for all common areas, facilities and utilities within each stage of development or section thereof.

(2)   Other assurances.  The Planning Board may condition its approval upon the applicant obtaining any other necessary approvals, licenses or permits from the appropriate town, county, state or federal agencies having jurisdiction thereof.

(3)   Compliance with standards.  In arriving at a recommendation to the Town Board to approve or disapprove the CBD Development Plan application, the Planning Board shall have conducted a full SEQRA review to determine whether the proposed uses meet the standards set forth in this section.

      Step 5:  Decision of Town Board.  Upon receipt of the Planning Board's resolution which will rrecommend action to the Town Board and state appropriate conditions including items such as posting of a performance bond, erosion control security, inspection fees, etc., If the Town Board elects to proceed, the Town Board shall schedule a public hearing and following said hearing, may by resolution, act either to approve, approve with modification or disapprove the CBD Development Plan application. 

If approved, the application will be referred back to the Planning Board for final site plan approval.  There will be no additional fees at this step.

     Step 6:  Final Site Development Plan Approval by the Planning Board Upon receipt of the Town Board's approval of the project, the Planning Board shall grant final site plan approval consistent with the Town Board's approval. (No public hearing required).  

Anyone interested in addressing comments on the above to the Planning Board may do so by appearing in person at the above time and place or by submitting their written comments to the Cortlandt Planning Office no later than 3:00 P.M. on December 1, 2006.


November 13, 2006

PB 34-06