Zon­ing Board plays vi­tal role in shap­ing city

Stamford Advocate (Sunday) - - Opinion - Randy Din­ter Stam­ford

To the ed­i­tor,

Your ar­ti­cle re­gard­ing the Zon­ing Board (Dec. 26 news story, “Zon­ing Board seat still un­filled”) was cer­tainly news­wor­thy to those of us who have been fol­low­ing zon­ing is­sues and de­vel­op­ment.

It was good to hear that Barry Michel­son is still in­ter­ested in be­ing on the Zon­ing Board. He proved his met­tle when the State of Con­necti­cut planned to build a new rail­road sta­tion as part of a very large mixed-use de­vel­op­ment while mov­ing the park­ing garage a quar­ter mile from the sta­tion plat­form.

Af­ter re­search­ing the is­sue, Mr. Michel­son cre­ated a zon­ing or­di­nance which was passed, al­low­ing the city to view any plans to de­velop within its bound­aries. While the city has no over­sight on state prop­erty, it opens a door for dis­cus­sion. This kind of com­mu­nity ser­vice, ex­pe­ri­ence and ex­per­tise is needed as the city grows.

Many peo­ple in this city are con­cerned about how reg­u­la­tions and agree­ments were ig­nored in the case of the for­mer boat­yard, along with rec­om­men­da­tions made by the Plan­ning Board and the Stam­ford Har­bor Man­age­ment Com­mis­sion.

These two pan­els are made up of some very ded­i­cated, hard-work­ing peo­ple who also serve our city. Per­haps Michael Pol­lard’s (the mayor’s chief of staff) view about get­ting “new views, new ideas” is what has added a po­lit­i­cal el­e­ment to how the ad­min­is­tra­tion sees its re­spon­si­bil­ity to reg­u­la­tions un­der pres­sure by de­vel­op­ers. This can be a slip­pery slope as pub­lic aware­ness grows.

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