Zoning Board of Appeals

Recent Articles

ZBA Green-Lights New Two-Family Home on East Avenue

The Zoning Board of Appeals on Monday approved two variances allowing for the construction of a two-family home at 72 East Ave.—however, the project still needs approval from the Planning & Zoning Commission in order to move forward. William Panella plans to raze an existing 1,400-square-foot home on the property, where his late mother Mary had lived, and remove a non-compliant detached garage in the rear in order to build a new, residential style, two-family dwelling measuring about 4,000 square feet. However, in order to get a special permit for the project he needed relief from a requirement that the property have a minimum of 100 feet of frontage (it has only 93 feet) and that the site allow for a conceptual 100-foot diameter “circle” of open area where there is no building footprint (the “circle” is just short at 97 feet) —both of which were granted at the ZBA meeting. The application was continued from the board’s October meeting after some board members expressed concerns over the driveway shown in a preliminary site plan. The initial plan showed the driveway running from East Avenue all the way to the rear of the property, where it was to connect with the parking lot for a new residential and commercial development currently underway at 23 Vitti St. Continue Reading →

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ZBA Grants Height Relief for Addition on Lincoln Drive Home

The Zoning Board of Appeals at its most recent meeting granted two variances allowing for the construction of an addition at 37 Lincoln Drive. Homeowners Robert and Catherine Pangrossi are planning to construct a 2.5-story addition, as well as a second floor addition over an existing garage and a rear wood deck, at their 1966-built Colonial. But they needed a variance for the height of the dormers, which will be about 33 feet in the rear of the house, due to a slope on the property, as opposed to the maximum allowable height of 30 feet. They also requested a setback variance of the ZBA because the addition, as planned, will encroach very slightly into a side yard setback. Robert Pangrossi, who came before the board Oct. Continue Reading →

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ZBA Green Lights Small Addition in Harrison Avenue Development

The Zoning Board of Appeals at its most recent meeting granted a variance allowing Don Corbo of Darien to build a small addition at 138 Harrison Ave.—one of six units in the development, consisting of three two-family homes near Main Street. Corbo, managing partner of Harrison Avenue Development, told members of the ZBA at their Oct. 2 meeting that he is converting the homes—purchased this summer for $4.2 million— from rentals to condominiums, and thus is seeking to renovate and update them. “This particular unit is the smallest and least attractive of the units,” he said during the meeting, held at Town Hall. “Right now it has only one room on the first floor which serves as a living room, dining room and kitchen.”

The plan, he said, is to build a small addition that will allow for a separate kitchen area on the ground floor and a master bedroom on the second floor. Continue Reading →

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Plan to Build Two-Family Home on East Avenue Stalls at ZBA

An application for a variance that would allow a two-family residence on East Avenue to replace a 1900-built single family home there was continued Monday night after town officials expressed concerns over the proposed driveway and pedestrian access way included in the project. On its face, property owner William Panella’s request for a variance for 72 East Ave. is straightforward: The applicant is requesting relief from the residential Zone B requirement for a minimum 100 feet of street frontage, as the property only allows for about 93 feet of frontage, and to allow the driveway from East Avenue to connect with another driveway and parking lot for an adjacent commercial property on Vitti Street. Panella plans to tear down the existing 1,400-square-foot home, where his late mother Mary had lived, as well as the detached garage in the rear and construct a new, residential style, two-family dwelling measuring about 4,000 square feet. Before the Zoning Board of Appeals on Monday, attorney David Rucci of Lampert Williams & Toohey LLC explained that he is, in fact, representing two clients on the project, William Panella, son of the late Mary Panella, whose property is the subject of the application, and Panella’s development partner, Art Collins, who is developing an adjacent property on Vitti Street, directly behind the property on East Avenue and in the town’s Business B zone (see map below). Continue Reading →

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‘This Is Completely Inappropriate’: Sober House Operators, Neighbor Fail To Reach Accord

Though they had appeared close to reaching an agreement, the operators of a sober house on West Road home and a neighbor appealing the town’s decision to allow it have failed to reach an accord, representatives said during a public hearing last week. Now, the question of whether the sober house may continue to operate—or, more likely, under exactly what conditions it will continue—is entirely in the hands of town officials who heard attorneys from both sides make their cases at a June 5 meeting of the Zoning Board of Appeals. During an unusual ZBA hearing that featured spirited interruptions and apologies, appellant Thom Harrow told board members that the owners of The Lighthouse proposed a series of conditions under which they agreed to run a sober house living facility for men at 909 West Road. According to Harrow, just one point of disagreement remained at the time the ZBA hearing opened—a question of whether six or eight clients would be allowed in the 8,000-square-foot home at one time. Harrow, Lighthouse officials and various attorneys took a break following an initial part of the hearing—ostensibly to sort out that final matter. Continue Reading →

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