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Potsdam Village Planning Board tables Pine St. site plan, requests SEQR be completed

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POTSDAM - A Norwood man’s attempt to add what he calls high end apartments into the village of Potsdam has been slowed by the village’s Planning Board.

“There were two applications submitted. One was a special use permit and one was for the site plan,” Potsdam Planning and Development Director Fred J. Hanss said.

“What he proposed to do was to gut rehab an existing substandard dwelling at 23 Pine St. – to change it from a two-family home to a four-family home. In addition, he requested to construct two four-unit apartment buildings in the rear of that existing building.”

Mr. Daniels’ special use permit was approved but the site plan was tabled.

“The extension of a special use permit application is something that the planning board could deal with since the building is an existent structure. With regards to an additional structure, he did not provide a detailed enough site plan or a SEQR (State Environmental Quality Review)” Mr. Hanss said. “We need to have those engineer plans and a SEQR before we can make that approval.”

Mr. Daniels said Friday that he is in the process of pulling together another site plan and getting a professional architect involved with his project. He is also planning on having a SEQR conducted.

Planning board Chairman Ted Prahl said that he did not see how the site plan could have been approved Thursday night.

“We don’t want to give the ability to build a completely new building without getting more details first,” he said. “He turned in a rather incomplete site plan and there has to be more substance before we can pass it.

“If the site plan for the one building does not extend beyond what it is now then it is fine. If they are adding another building then a SEQR has to be done.”

Mr. Daniels said he is trying to address a need in the village.

“Potsdam is in great need of quality units available for rent. At this time there is a very small selection of rentals. We are trying to take a rundown building and revitalize it to high end apartments,” he said. “We’re trying to take something that’s broken down and our goal is to raise all the property values in that area.”

The planning board chairman acknowledged he is skeptical the project will come to fruition, but he said he will wait to see what happens.

“Quite honestly, I’ve been on the board for 27 years and some of this stuff ends up not happening. I’m not saying that they’re not going to come through, but it could be another 10 years or so,” Mr. Prahl said.

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