Kutzky Park alley vacation

Some neighbors are unhappy that the city has approved the potential vacation of an alley in Kutzky Park.  I understand their frustration, but think that it was the right decision.  It passed unanimously 6-0.  Here are some facts that I base this on.  I am also disappointed with having a purity test applied to me whereby all the work that I do for the neighborhood is disregarded if I don’t vote the way that they would like on one issue.  I would ask which elected official in the city of Rochester has worked harder for core neighborhoods over the past 5 years?  Even if friends and neighbors are angry with me I will be there for them whenever they need me.

  • The alley in question is located behind the Alpine Inn.  This alley no longer functions as a through alley because the Eastern end of the alley was vacated more than a decade ago.  If this alley was currently a complete alley I would not have voted in favor of a vacation.
  • The city verified that all existing properties would have fully functioning access in the case of a vacation.
  • The agreement requires that a final development plan that complies with the 2nd street corridor plan must be approved within 5 years or else the alley must be given back to the city.
  • Rather than just give away the public property, the agreement requires the dedication of a new alleyway in a different location.  We did not give anything away we exchanged land.
  • The current properties to be razed were an issue for surround businesses and the clinic.
  • The current properties to be razed would have been an impediment to the street project tentatively scheduled for 2017.
  • Current zoning does allow for surface parking.  The vacation action taken does not change this.  Any zone change or parking lot design is a different battle for a different time.  Surface parking lots specifically do not comply with the 2nd street corridor plan, and as such the life will be limited to about 5 years or less.
  • Based on neighborhood input the city council initiated a staff exercise to specifically identify what does equate to a public benefit of a vacation and what does not.  This is the legal threshold for a vacation.
  • I do not support vacating land for parking lots.  I do support vacating land for outstanding developments.  I believe that we will have a great development under construction by 2017.  Time will tell if I was wrong.
  • Part of the development may include a subway under 2nd street SW.  This would represent a huge public benefit.
  • The planned development will be the first full service hotel in the St. Marys area and must comply with the 2nd street corridor plan.

 

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