Stewart’s Shops seeks 3 variances in Altamont proposal

— From Stewart’s Shops 

In its latest proposal for a new Altamont store, Stewart’s Shops has included a new porch with picnic tables on the Helderberg Avenue side of the building. On Feb. 11, the Altamont Zoning Board of Appeals will hold a public hearing on three variance requests made by Stewart’s.

ALTAMONT — Residents on Feb. 11 will have another chance to voice their opinions about Stewart’s Shops latest attempt to build a new 3,340-foot store at its Altamont Boulevard location. This time, the village’s zoning board of appeals will be listening to locals’ points of view on variance requests made by the company. 

The Altamont Village Board in a November 4-to-1 vote, rezoned, for the second time in less than a year, from residential to commercial the Stewart’s-owned property at 107-109 Helderberg Ave.

At its December meeting, the zoning board declined to set a public hearing for this month, saying the holidays could have created a problem with properly notifying the public and affected neighbors about the hearing. 

Also at that Dec. 10 meeting, Stewart’s presented a plan that needed three variances to make it code-compliant:

— An area variance for minimum allowable lot size.

The parcel has an area of about 34,000 acres. Village code states that gasoline service stations are permitted only on lots of 40,000 square feet or more. 

An area variance of about 6,000 would be needed;

— A setback variance from the adjacent property at 111 Helderberg Ave.

With a gasoline-service-station designation, the village code says the only structure on the site that can be closer than 50 feet to the adjacent residential lot is a fence. 

As proposed, the site plan shows the back of the new building approximately 20 feet from the property line of the adjacent 111 Helderberg Ave., which has a Victorian house. The plan calls for a six-foot high fence (built on top of a two-foot berm) placed about 13 feet from the back of the new Stewart’s Shop to separate the two parcels.

A setback variance of about 30 feet would be needed; and

—   A setback variance from Altamont Boulevard for the new building.

 According to village code, the maximum distance from Altamont Boulevard that the new shop could be built is 10 feet. Stewart’s is proposing to place its new store 104 feet from Altamont Boulevard.

The company would need a setback variance of about 94 feet. ​

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