Northampton studies subdivision

NORTHAMPTON — The town planning board, after listening to comments from the public, began the process of researching how to create residential subdivisions of 10 parcels for the 54-acre Sacandaga Golf Course.

Town Code Enforcement Officer Matt Ginter said Northampton’s Comprehensive Plan, written in 2007, established a protective “Golf Course District” around the golf course, built in 1898, which prohibits single-family residential development of the land. But a recent proposal by John Mulcahy, a businessman who owns a camp on Lincoln Avenue, has prompted the town board to take action to explore how such a subdivision could be done.

Mulcahy has proposed purchasing the golf course from its current owner Richard “Dick” Osborne for approximately $400,000, but only if the town board first rezones the property to allow him to subdivide it for residential development.

“The town board asked the [planning board] to come up with the lot sizes and minimum density calculations, based on his proposal. They want the planning board to create those two items and draw [what the] new district lines [would be], based on his proposal,” Ginter said. “The planning board has been ordered by the town board to come up with these items; that’s in no way an endorsement or an approval. [The planning board] is just doing what it was ordered to do.”

Mulcahy’s plan includes carving out 10 lots from the golf course, nine of which he would sell. The plan includes six subdivisions near the 8th hole of the course, all of which could be connected to municipal water; three subdivisions on the southern end of the property, not connected to municipal water; and one property on the lake, the subdivision he does not plan to sell. None of the subdivisions are connected to municipal sewer service. The holes affected by the plan would Nos. 3, 4 and 8.

Ginter said he and Scott Henze, an employee of the Fulton County Planning Department, have been tasked by the planning board with researching how big the lot sizes would need to be, if the rezoning were to be allowed.

Factors that will influence the size the lot subdivisions would need to be include the amount of land necessary for them to drill wells, the size necessary for septic systems and consideration of Adirondack Park Agency rules and guidelines.

Ginter said he and Henze will complete their research and present it to the town planning board May 9 with the minimum lot sizes and the new boundary lines that the town board requested.

“At that point we should be able to have all of the wording done to then send it back to the town board.

The board is scheduled to meet May 17. At that point, they can determine if they are going to pursue this, or be done with it, Ginter said.

By Chad Fleck

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