Neighbor Objects To Proposed Barn on Oenoke Ridge Road

Saying they’re worried about property values, smells, insects and wildlife, the owners of an Oenoke Ridge Road home are objecting to a neighbor’s application to build an approximately 2,000-square-foot, single story barn that would house rescued pigs, sheep and goats. The barn at 1770 Oenoke Ridge Road and its “let-out pens”—an apparent reference to an area out front of the barn that would be enclosed by pasture fencing—would be a “substantial detriment to the neighborhood,” according to a letter submitted to the Planning & Zoning Commission by David and Rosie Albright of 1752 Oenoke Ridge Road. “We believe that this proposed variance would have serious negative implications to property values, potentially negatively affect he well water/drinking water systems, and have detrimental impacts on the overall living environment of the immediate neighborhood,” the Albrights wrote. “Regarding the overall living environment, we are specifically concerned about the impacts on air quality due to odors from the animals themselves, manure and manure dumpster, insect control, as well as the let-out pens being constructed in the front yard, in very close proximity to our property. Further, we strongly believe that the aesthetics of let-out pens for such animals positioned in their front yard and visible from Oenoke Ridge will have a negative impact on the surrounding properties.”

Under the New Canaan Zoning Regulations, a homeowner may apply for a special permit to allow accessory buildings that cover more than 1,000 feet.

Did You Hear … ?

TV’s original home improvement show has a webcam on the God’s Acre Greek Revival that made headlines this week when town officials voiced support for a sensitive restoration and rebuilding project. The antique at 4 Main St. is the 2019 “Idea House” for “This Old House” and will track developments there. ***

The peacock seen wandering around Wahackme Road on Monday afternoon is back home, according to police. The exotic bird’s Ponus Ridge owner saw an article about it, and the peacock was located and returned to its pen with three others.

‘We Need To Do Everything We Can’: P&Z Approves First-Floor Office Use for ‘Second Ring’ of Downtown New Canaan

Municipal officials last week unanimously approved changes to the New Canaan Zoning Regulations that are designed to help commercial property owners, downtown retailers and the wider community. 

The Planning & Zoning Commission voted 9-0 in favor of text changes to the regulations that re-establish first floor office use in the “Business A” zone with site plan review. The Business A zone includes nearly all of the two-way stretch of Elm Street in New Canaan, parts of Grove Street, all of Pine Street and commercial lots on both sides of Cherry Street as it curls past Cross Street, almost to Locust Avenue (see map here). As local land use attorney David Rucci of New Canaan-based Lampert, Toohey & Rucci LLC said in applying to the Commission for the text changes (on behalf of the the new owners of the former Beval Saddlery building on Pine Street), though the Business A zone was created in 1985—at a time when the owner of the Lumberyard site was considering building an office park—more than half of it serves first-floor general office use on a legally nonconforming basis. Re-establishing first-floor office use will help the zone become more viable for both the owners of buildings, some of which are vacant, and the town, he said. “The office use itself is actually already occurring,” Rucci said at the Commission’s regular meeting, held Nov.

New Owners of ‘Beval Saddlery’ Building Seek First-Floor Office Use for ‘Second Ring’ of Downtown New Canaan

Saying the change would help commercial property owners, retailers and the wider community, a local land use attorney has applied to the town to allow first-floor offices in a business zone that skirts the center of downtown New Canaan. Representing the new owners of the former Beval Saddlery building on Pine Street, attorney David Rucci of Main Street’s Lampert, Toohey & Rucci LLC is seeking to amend the New Canaan Zoning Regulations to “re-establish first floor office use with site plan review in the Business A zone.”

“The Business A zone was created in 1985,” Rucci wrote in an application filed Monday with Planning & Zoning. “It is the largest of the business zones and represents the second ring of the core. While there is a prohibition on new first floor office use today, over 50 percent of the zone serves first floor general office use. The remaining properties serve retail, bank, medical, second floor office use and single purpose type of business use.”

The application continued: “By re-establishing first floor general office use in the Business A zone, we believe the zone would become more economically viable for both A zone building owners and the Town of New Canaan.