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The official newspaper of the towns of Bedford and Pound Ridge, New York

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APRIL 4, 2014

‘Pops, Patriots and Fireworks’

Pound Ridge/Scotts Corners

  1. Scotts Corner Market – Trinity Corners Shopping Center;  55 Westchester Avenue

  2. Pound Ridge Sunoco — 66 Westchester Avenue    

  3. Sam Parker Country Market — 257 Westchester Avenue    


Bedford Village

  1. Bedford Rexall Pharmacy — Hunting Ridge Mall; 424 Old Post Road  

  2. Village Green Deli — Village Green; Routes 22 and 172    

  3. Bedford Shell — Routes 22 and 172 (at blinking light); 848 So. Bedford Road

  4. Village Service Center —193 Pound Ridge Road (at Long Ridge Road intersection)    


Bedford Hills

  1. Bedford Hills Deli – 7 Babbitt Road    

  2. Bueti’s Deli – 526 Bedford Road (Route 117)


Katonah

  1. NoKA Joe’s – 25 Katonah Avenue    

  2. Steger’s Paper Mill – 89 Katonah Avenue    

  3. Katonah Pharmacy – Katonah Shopping Center; 294 Katonah Avenue   

  4. Bagel Shoppe – Katonah Shopping Center; 280 Katonah Avenue    

  5. Katonah Sunoco – 105 Bedford Road


Mount Kisco

  1. Teamo/Mt. Kisco News – 239 Main Street    


Cross River

  1. Bagel Boys Café – Cross River Shopping Center; Routes 121 and 35    

  2. Cross River Shell Station – Route 35    

  3. Cameron’s Deli –  890 Route 35    

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Inn urged to address traffic, safety issues


By DON HEPPNER

During the March 27 Pound Ridge planning board meeting, Robert Aiello, an engineer from John Meyer Consulting, and Lucia Chiocchio, attorney with Cuddy and Feder, tried to appease frustrated town officials, who have come close to shutting down The Inn at Pound Ridge by Jean-Georges for illegal parking and for hindering traffic flow on Westchester Avenue.

“I need a response from the restaurant,” Mr. Perry said. “There are public safety issues there that have to be resolved. We are trying not to shut you down.”

Finding enough parking spaces to accommodate the Inn’s patrons has been a challenge for valet parking staff. Despite warnings from the town’s police department about parking in approved spots and maintaining the flow of Westchester Avenue traffic, the valet staff has parked wherever convenient, including Conant Hall and Samuel Parker’s Landmark Deli on Westchester Avenue.

“My inclination is, if we are not contacted by somebody from the restaurant to help resolve these issues, I am going to issue citations and violations and deny you access to these boards,” said building inspector Jim Perry.

Ms. Chiocchio and Mr. Aiello came before the planning board with requests that would increase on-site parking. The representatives of the Inn also said that additional parking could be accommodated at Poundridge Nurseries, Pound Ridge Elementary School and the Community Church’s property.

“I feel confident in saying, that from the town board’s perspective, since four of the five town board members are here, that to the extent that we possibly can, we expedite this,” town supervisor Dick Lyman said at the meeting. “Do the proper review, obviously, but let’s move this as quickly as we can.”

The restaurant seats 240. Pound Ridge Planning Board Chairman Clay Fowler took the blame for not picking up on the need for more spaces during the application process, which took place before his board.

“This board has been asked to expedite things, and I think that everybody here is interested in helping this restaurant succeed,” building inspector Jim Perry said. “It’s a great business for Pound Ridge, and we want it to work.”

He said the town is trying to be accommodating but the restaurant does not communicate with the town when communication is required. “I get no response from anybody about the current public safety issues,” said Mr. Perry. “Parking in front of Samuel Parker’s Market has to go. Emergency service apparatus cannot get onto the property. These are issues that have to be resolved immediately.”

“We know that there is a crying need to fix this,” said Mr. Fowler.

“We are here tonight to talk about more on-site parking,” said Ms. Chiocchio. “The overall master plan will include additional on-site parking and some provision for off-site parking.”

She said that the restaurant has a “handshake deal” with the nursery to provide some parking.

Mr. Aiello said that the proposed parking plan should improve the flow of traffic in and out of the restaurant and provide more on-site parking.

Septic fields take up much of the space at the rear of the property. “They are standard fields and we cannot park above them,” he said, “but when we total the existing and proposed spaces, we have 128 valet parking spaces.”

Employees require 50 to 60 spaces when the restaurant is at its busiest.

Mr. Aiello said the valet service has identified the reason for traffic backing up onto Westchester Avenue. “There is a pinch point in the front,” he said. “If someone comes in and gets confused and parks a little bit askew, it blocks the parking operation and cars are backed up onto Westchester Avenue.”

“I know this plan is to eliminate what is a big issue on certain nights,” Mr. Fowler said, “but if I was the developer, I would be asked to do a full traffic analysis. You have probably done that and I think that we need to see that data.”

He said the avenue is narrow at the point of the restaurant and there are traffic issues across the street at certain times when Conant Hall is in use.

“We want to provide a stripe down the center of the road so that people know to stay on one side or the other,” Mr. Aiello said.

Mr. Fowler said that access for fire-fighting equipment is a necessary consideration in any plan that deals with traffic flow.

Mr. Aiello said the valet service is not parking cars on the corners of the entrance, since those areas were identified as needed space for fire apparatus.

“I love your plan,” Mr. Perry said. “I hate what’s going on now. I don’t want to shut you down, but you are leaving me little choice.”

“We will have a contact person for you,” said Ms. Chiocchio.

“What’s taking so long?” asked planning board member John Bria. “Mr. Perry has been trying to get results for a while, and you haven’t given any to him.”

Mr. Perry made the distinction between the owner of the restaurant and the owner of the property. He said the owner of the property has been cooperative and responsive but that Jean-Georges employees have been unresponsive to pleas to meet.

Ms. Chiocchio said there have been discussions with the Pound Ridge Community Church and the Pound Ridge Elementary School about the use of those properties for parking.

Jason Worflar, the current general manager of the Inn, came to the front of the room. He said he was only recently alerted, on Monday, March 24, to the parking problems. He agreed to meet with Mr. Perry on Friday, March 28.

Mr. Fowler said the connection between the restaurant and the town has been made and it is up to the restaurant to ensure that the connection is continued and the issues are resolved.

Since off-site parking is required, the special use permit need amending and a planned long-term relationship for parking cars off-site given to the planning board in writing.

On Monday, after Friday’s meeting, Mr. Perry reported that the cars were no longer parked where they shouldn’t be and the meeting with Jean-Georges staff went well.


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