NORTH HAVEN — The Planning and Zoning Commission recently postponed a decision on a zone change that would allow senior apartments on the Pieper’s Farm property on Clintonville Road.
The commission closed the public hearing on the application at its Monday meeting, but decided to postpone a a decision until next month in order to gather more information on how the new housing might impact emergency services.
The zone change application filed by attorney Timothy Lee, who is representing Vigliotti Construction, asks the commission to rezone Pieper’s Farm for senior housing. The 13.3-acre property at 343 Clintonville Road is currently zoned residential.
Lee said the complex would not exceed 120 apartments and would be available to those 55 and older.
Vigliotti Construction also owns Tuscan Villa, 401 Clintonville Road, a senior housing complex adjacent to Pieper’s Farm. Two other senior housing complexes, Regency Meadows and Stevens Woods, are located on Clintonville Road.
According to the CT Data Collaborative 2018 town profile, 51 percent of residents are 45 years and older. Nineteen percent were over 65.
PZC chairman Vern Carlson, who spoke in favor of the zone change, said he will contact town officials, including the fire chief and first selectman, for information on the emergency services issue.
“If the fire marshal said, ‘hey we absolutely cannot support (the development)’ ... it could change my mind, of course. I always keep an open mind on these things, but I don't think he will say that,” Carlson said.
Vice Chairman Ronald Penton expressed similar confusion as to whether the commission should have any role in how the town deals with emergency services, but recommended Carlson speak with town officials. Penton said town’s response to the fire department’s appeal for increased personnel and equipment would be a factor in his final decision.
“Taking that concern off the table, I happen to think the location of this application is a relatively good one,” Penton said.
Other commissioners expressed a desire to consider the impact on emergency services.
“I think we all know that what we do has a great impact on emergency services ... so I think we need to be cognizant of that,” said commission member Theresa Ranciato-Viele. “(If) we keep adding senior housing, it adds to our paramedic calls, it adds to fire calls. I'm worried about that.”
If the zone change is approved in March, Lee said they will probably return in about three to six months with a special permit application and site plan, detailing exact plans for development.
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