Press-Republican

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September 26, 2010

Crown Point seeks hamlet expansion

â Expansion could bring opportunity, town supervisor says

CROWN POINT — Expanding the hamlet of Crown Point might boost development opportunities there, Town Supervisor Bethany Kosmider says.

Kosmider has had preliminary talks with Adirondack Park Agency representatives on a possible hamlet expansion in her town.

Ticonderoga expanded its hamlet in 2008, and Westport is attempting to enlarge its hamlet area in Wadhams by 20 acres.

Under the APA Act, hamlets are subject to far less restrictions and review than non-hamlet areas in the Adirondack Park.

Kosmider said the section of town around Sugar Hill Road, Pearl Street and Bradford Hill to Factoryville Road could qualify for hamlet expansion.

"Those areas all have town water and sewer services. The APA says that water and sewer districts are a qualifier for hamlet designation."

Kosmider said APA officials have been receptive to the discussion.

"They seem like they're willing to work with the town. We hope that the map amendments (to the hamlet) will attract more businesses to Crown Point. We'd like to see growth."

She said that if the town submits a formal application for hamlet expansion, the agency said it could take a year to review and process, but there is no cost to the town. If the APA denies the request, things would just stay the same as they are now, she said.

Park Agency spokesman Keith McKeever said they've met with Kosmider and had productive talks so far.

"We're having good conversations with the Crown Point supervisor. She's reached out to the APA, contacted us about map amendments, what the process is."

The map-amendment process to expand a hamlet must be locally driven, McKeever said.

"We discussed the process. We provided a building-constraints map for the community. We reviewed what existing land-use classifications are" in Crown Point.

The APA looks on low-intensity use areas that have public water and sewer as good for hamlets, McKeever said.

"That's a criteria for reclassifying to hamlet. We left her with the constraint maps. She's going to potentially move forward and form a planning committee and start the process."

The next steps are up to Crown Point officials, he said.

"They have to look at an inventory of growth patterns, where are the potentials for growth, where would it benefit (the town). There will be a lot of public input, and they'll bring a proposal to the APA, and we'll do a review on it."

He said Kosmider should be commended for trying to help her town.

"Kudos to her for reaching out. There are definitely some areas (in Crown Point) that qualify for hamlet."

E-mail Lohr McKinstry at: lmckinstry@pressrepublican.com

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