On November 21st, I attended a meeting entitled “Consultants Present Findings on 303 & 304 Corridors.”
Mr. Christopher Titze of Cambridge Systematics said that land owners and businesses had already been surveyed and that this meeting was to present to and hear from residents. When asked why only about thirty people were in attendance if this meeting was to hear from at least a reasonable number of residents, and why the meeting had not been publicized, the answers by Mr. Titze and by Mr. Joe Simoes, the Town Planner, were vague. I know that if the residents of Bardonia had known about the meeting the place would have been packed with people who are vehemently opposed to the idea of a QuickChek on the corner of Route 304 and Bardonia Rd.
The slide entitled “Overall Corridor Concept for Route 304” which appears in the Nov. 22 New City Patch mentions concepts such as limited small scale retail for neighborhood use, consistent with neighborhood character, encourages walkability, and lower intensity gateway. In addition, the Town of Clarkstown Comprehensive Plan mentions quality of life, neighborhood character, neighborhood preservation and stability of established neighborhoods. As I said at the meeting, I find it impossible to reconcile the objectives described above with the idea of a QuickChek in our quiet neighborhood.
Mr. Titze commented that there were no gas stations along Route 304. Perhaps, but there are plenty of stations in New City just up the road, or on Route 59 just down the road, or at less expensive venues in nearby New Jersey. There is no need for a QuickChek in Bardonia.
When comments were made about the effect a QuickChek would have on traffic, particularly impacting the Bardonia Elementary School, the answer was that this study was about land use and zoning. If so, why was a firm hired whose representative has on his card “Transportation leadership you can trust”. What consideration is being given to people like myself and others at the meeting who indicated how difficult it is to deal with the traffic we already have? Why is the town hiring outside consultants we can ill afford when we are already paying Mr. Simoes and his Planning Department?
The other three corners of the intersection have commercial enterprises which do not effect the traffic or the neighborhood. There are sufficient services for food, pharmacy, cleaning and other requirements, run by local merchants, to satisfy resident needs without imposing a QuickChek which will seriously impact the character of the neighborhood as well as draw people to the neighborhood at all hours whom the residents would rather not have here.
If the QuickChek is being seriously considered by Mr. Gromack and the Town Planners, we hope they will start listening to the residents of Bardonia who are adamantly opposed to having this put upon us.
Harvey M. Abrams