Bridle Path Lane Homeowners Seek Permission To Build Accessory Dwelling

The owners of a 3.18-acre parcel on Bridle Path Lane are seeking permission to build a new 1,800-square-foot residential structure near the main house. Designed for in-laws, the wood-framed, two-bedroom structure planned for 114 Bridle Path Lane will include two full bathrooms and a kitchen-and-living space, according to a Special Permit application filed with the town by New Canaan-based Amanda Martocchio Architecture. “The scale of the new structure is in keeping with the scale of the neighborhood and adjacent homes,” Martocchio said in a statement that forms part of the application. The Planning & Zoning Commission is expected to take the application up at its regular meeting Tuesday. Under the New Canaan Zoning Regulations, a detached guest house or accessory dwelling unit is allowed with a Special Permit from P&Z so long as the property is located in a one-acre-plus zone, on a lot with at least two acres of buildable land and the proposed structure complies with setback requirements, among other conditions (see page 54 here).

P&Z Vote on New Canaan Library Project Expected Tuesday Night

The Planning & Zoning Commission is expected to vote during a special meeting Tuesday on New Canaan Library’s closely followed applications to rebuild its facility. The 6 p.m. meeting, to be held via videoconference (login info below), will be the eighth hearing that P&Z has held on the library project since the organization filed its plans Feb. 26. 

Those plans call for a new 42,641-square-foot library with a 355-seat auditorium, outdoor terrace and ‘library green’ that encompasses the parcel where the 1913 building now stands. During their last meeting, P&Z members agreed to flesh out for a future vote two options regarding the fate of the original library building and a 1936 addition. One would approve the library’s plan for a new building while calling for the organization to return to the Commission within a set timeframe with plans to “appropriately commemorate” the older buildings.

Divided P&Z Nears Decision on Library

During their seventh hearing on New Canaan Library’s application to rebuild its facility, members of the Planning & Zoning Commission last week set up a vote between two options regarding the fate of what remains of an original library building. One of them, tagged “Option A” and developed mainly by P&Z Chair John Goodwin, would allow for the library project to commence and, one year in, the organization would present options to P&Z to “appropriately commemorate” the 1913 building and 1936 addition. “It is the assumption that significant aspects of the 1913 and/or 1936 building will be preserved in some meaningful way on the site,” according to the language of the draft approval, obtained by through a public records request. The other, “Option B,” developed mainly by Commissioner Dan Radman, calls for construction to be put off until the library has submitted a plan to “incorporate and integrate” the east and north facades and roof of the old buildings so that they’re “maintained on the site in a location satisfactory to the Commission.” If there’s “no feasible way” to do that, the project can start without a plan for preservation, under draft Option B.

As drafted for the start of the meeting, neither scenario meets the standard set by a preservation group that has said the 1913 building must be restored—that is, its southern and western walls re-closed—and remain in place. Library officials last month said they’d be willing to preserve and move the Main Street-facing portico and facade of the 1913 building to the western property line. 

The language in both options is expected to undergo revision based on the commissioners’ discussion at the 4.5-hour meeting, held June 29 via videoconference.

Dunkin Donuts To Move Across Elm Street

The Planning & Zoning Commission on Tuesday approved plans that will allow Dunkin Donuts to move across Elm Street, to a commercial space next to The Playhouse. Currently located at 88 Elm St., Dunkins is to move to the far side of the midblock crosswalk to number 105, according to a site plan application filed with the town. The “new” Dunkin Donuts will have an updated look and more room for customers, according to James Cain, representing the applicant. “It’s basically just a nicer, upscale design,” he told members of P&Z at their regular meeting, held via videoconference. Under the New Canaan Zoning Regulations, permitted uses for properties in the Retail A Zone with site plan approval include “[r]estaurants, excluding any designed or intended in whole or in part for food service to, or consumption by, patrons in motor vehicles on the premises” (see page 73 here).