ACTION 1: KEEP THE PRESSURE UP! CONTACT THE CITY!
RIGHT NOW: The most important thing is to keep the pressure with the city!
- Use the text below to send it to the City of Troy (or click here – opens draft email in your email browser)
- Add your name/edit the information as indicated in the text.
- Send the emails to Mayor Patrick Madden, City Council President Carmella Mantello, the entire City Council and the Planning Commission.
Tel: (518) 279 – 7130
Tel: (518) 281 – 6582
Planning Commissioner Steven Strichman
Tel: (518) 279 – 7392
TEMPLATE FOR LETTER:
TO: Patrick.Madden@troyny.gov; Carmella.Mantello@troyny.gov; firstname.lastname@example.org; Steven.Strichman@troyny.gov; James.Rath@troyny.gov;
BCC (optional): FriendsOfTheMahicantuck@gmail.com
SUBJECT: PROTECT AND PRESERVE THE SACRED SITE AT 1011 2nd AVE
Mayor Patrick Madden, City Council President Carmella Mantello, Members of the Troy City Council, Planning Commissioner Steven Strichman, and Members of the Planning Commission
My name is [insert name]. I live in the [insert city/town/village].
I am writing to you to oppose the requested zoning change for 1011 2nd Avenue (Tax Parcel 70.64-1-1).
The “Sacred Forest” at 1011 2nd Avenue is the city’s last untouched forest along the Hudson River as well as a nationally significant (National Register eligible) indigenous heritage site with artifacts dating back to 1500-3000 B.C. The indigenous peoples maintain ties to this land that grew over 5000 years. For them, this is sacred land. It is unique for its history and cultural heritage.
The “Sacred Forest” is also unique for its ecology. There are several county-rare plant species present on this land, some of which are habitat indicators that make the presence of globally rare species likely (the scrub oak as an indicator for the globally rare buck moth, for example).
As the last natural forest of its kind it provides critical ecosystem services to a community located in a DEC designated “Potential Environmental Justice Area” (requiring amongst other a full EAF as part of SEQRA, as established in DEC CP 29 — Section E). Its destruction would be an incredible loss for us all. The loss of critical ecosystem services would disproportionately harm the local community of the Potential Environmental Justice Area.
Changing the zoning to accommodate a known project prior to the State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR) process is segmentation ( Kirk-Astor Drive Neighborhood Ass’n. v. Town Board of Town of Pittsford, 106 A.D.2d 868, 869, 483 N.Y.S.2d 526, 528 (4th Dep’t 1984)).
A zoning change should be included as a consideration in the project’s Environmental Assessment Form (EAF) if it moves forward with its environmental review. Additionally, a change in the zoning to allow a different use than what is stated in the 2018 “Realize Troy” Comprehensive Plan would require an amendment to the Comprehensive Plan, and should be indicated as a “discretionary action” alongside the rezoning in the full EAF.
During three public hearings the public provided more than eight hours of testimony in opposition to the rezoning, alongside numerous written submissions, expert testimonies and reports. The public is united in its opposition to approve the rezoning of this property to make way for a 240 unit housing development.
As public officials it is your responsibility to listen to your constituents. Considering our clear position across party lines alongside the historical, archeological, cultural and ecological significance of this sacred land, and its being located in a New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) “Potential Environmental Justice Area”, the planning commission and the city must make the protection and preservation of this land its highest priority.
Considering the issues of segmentation, inconsistencies with the comprehensive plan and process requirements established in SEQR, the Planning Commission must recommend against rezoning at this time for all of the reasons stated.
[Optional: Personal paragraph of relationship to the land and why you think it is important that this land is protected]