Irish center needs environmental scrutiny
Dear Editor: We reviewed the changes to the Irish Cultural Center of the Hudson Valley’s proposal and, while we appreciate their effort to address the concerns raised by residents, businesses and visitors of the Rondout neighborhood, the changes presented are not responsive enough to mitigate the adverse impacts pointed out to the Planning Board by various agencies and the public.
Our citizens’ group, Grow the R-T Responsibly, which supports responsible development of the Rondout, has delivered to the city of Kingston Planning Board our latest petition maintaining our group’s position that a positive declaration of likely environmental impact of the project is needed in the review process.
Reasons listed include recommendations from the Kingston Heritage Area Commission and the State Historic Preservation Office, public comments and our previous petition which was delivered to the Planning Board.
The recent petition contains more than 30 comments citing reasons this project, even with its changes, will have at least one potential adverse impact on the area (the criteria for a positive declaration under state environmental quality review rules): scale and design incompatibility with the area; noise, traffic and lighting impacts on neighbors; impact on nearby small businesses; and the lack of parking, among others.
The current petition represents the many of us who could not attend or speak before the Kingston Planning Board on Nov. 2, alongside those who did.
The impacts of this project should be adequately studied so the public’s health, safety and welfare, and the quality of life of the immediate neighborhood will be taken into account during the review process. Owen Harvey on behalf of Grow the R-T Responsibly Kingston