Saying a local developer secured a permit by deceptive means, a group of residents is calling for the town to revoke it. The Inland Wetlands Commission at its November 2018 meeting voted 5-2 in favor of an application (over the objections of some neighbors) to install a 16-foot-wide driveway “to provide access to two proposed residences” at 17 and 23 Hill St., building lots that had been subdivided four years prior. The adjoining undeveloped parcels, also known as lots 72 and 812, rise eastward from Hill Street, which runs parallel to Route 123, behind Brushy Ridge Road (map below). According to a petition filed last month on behalf of a group of neighborhood residents by attorney Frank Silverstri Jr. of Westport-based Verrill Dana LLP, the property owner “secured the Permit through deception and inaccurate information.”
Though “the Permittee represented that the Property would be developed for two single-family homes, and the Permittee only orally represented to the [Commission] that the Property would not be developed for a multi-family affordable housing complex,” such a large-scale project was the plan all along, Silverstri said in the petition.
“In fact, for years prior to applying for the Permit and continuing through the present, the Permittee has intended and still intends to construct a 101-unit affordable housing complex on the Property, all the white concealing its true intent from the [Commission],” the petition said. Those signing the petition call themselves “New Canaan Residents Against Destructive Development” and include Mark Durkin, Jeffrey Stein, Dean Magyars, Sean O’Malley, Jason Konidaris, Alison Foxworth and Joseph Braccia.