More press for Terramor Saugerties Catskills

Albany Times Union opinion Terramor Saugerties Catskills

Hudson Valley One logo - Terramor Saugerties Catskills storyThe Terramor project received more press coverage in the November 16th 2022 issue of Hudson Valley 1. The article was entitled: Self-confessed NIMBYs in Woodstock and Saugerties fight development of glamping resort (HV1 link opens in new tab)
In case that link to the article is paywalled, below is the text of the piece (photos removed).



The project was also the subject of an opinion piece in the Albany Times-Union
Commentary: Sometimes, NIMBY can also be for the greater good. (TU link opens in new tab)
In case that link is paywalled, below is the text of that piece (photos removed).



In case the Hudson Valley 1 article is paywalled, here is the text of the piece (photos removed):
— Article starts —

Self-confessed NIMBYs in Woodstock and Saugerties fight development of glamping resort

by Susan Farkas November 16, 2022

Opposition to the Terramor glamping resort, planned on a 77-acre lot where Saugerties and Woodstock meet, is mounting — and going national.

A project of Kampgrounds of America’s high-end brand, Terramor plans to build 75 luxury tents on platforms, each with its own bathroom and firepit, plus a 4,000-square-foot restaurant and event center, an outfitter’s shop, staff housing, a swimming pool and a communal fire pit.

‘Terramor’ means love the land but nearby homeowners are dubious. Red and white “Stop Terramor’’ signs are sprouting on surrounding roads. They suggest “Love Thy Neighbor.”

Neighbors fear the Terramor development, which KOA hopes to open in 2024, and its near-Woodstock address will draw visitors curious about the town’s charms but destructive to the area’s tranquility and respect for nature.
Terramor construction.

Robert Thurman, a retired school administrator and mental health counselor, is a self-confessed NIMBY. A resident of Plochman Lane, which is near Terramor’s western side, he’s adamantly opposed to a glamping site “in his backyard.” Thurman is 75 and asthmatic. He worries about air pollution from the wood-burning fire pits, aquifer depletion that will drain his well and traffic congestion as additional cars travel on already over-taxed roads.

Thurman says he wants nothing more than to sit on his porch with a good book. But he’s on the board of Citizens against Terramor and says he’s in this fight to the finish. “We don’t feel there is any compromise that would allow this to be built — we’re going to stick to our guns.”

Educator Dr. Susan Paynter is president of Citizens Against Terramor. On her list of concerns is the loss of ten acres of precious wetlands that provide natural filtration of pollutants, as well as important habitat for wildlife and birds like the American woodcock, a “species of continental concern.”

One of Terramor’s neighbors has already been affected by its ambitious plans. His story is a cautionary tale for those who fear their property values are threatened.

This summer, painter and Saugerties resident Donald Elder and his neighbor were on the verge of selling a fifteen-acre parcel of land they own jointly. They had a customer — an artist planning to build a home and studio on the property. Her land would border Terramor. A price was agreed in mid-June.

But before the closing date, newspapers (including Hudson Valley One) reported on the Terramor development. When she learned that several tents would be built about 100 feet from her property line, Elder’s buyer feared that light and music would disrupt the peaceful natural surroundings she sought. The deal collapsed.

Elder now despairs of ever selling the parcel — or even his house, which is a short walk from the low stone wall that marks Terramor’s land.

Dozens of neighbors are organizing and raising money — about $29,000 so far — to hire a hydrologist, an environmental engineer, a geologist, a lawyer and Hudsonia, an environmental research institute. Citizens Against Terramor hope the data these experts collect will convince the Saugerties Planning Board to deny the company permission to proceed.

NIMBYs across the country have joined the fight. Citizens Against Terramor has posted a petition on Change.org. They address Ulster County Executive Jen Metzger, stating, “While we appreciate progress, we do not want to be overdeveloped, and strongly believe RESORTS do not belong in residential communities.”
“Stop Terramor” signs on Glasco Turnpike.

So far, they’ve gathered more than 32,000 signatures, many from “Saugerstock” but others from as far afield as Arkansas and Arizona. Dr. Paynter believes a widespread distrust of corporate outsiders is fueling the passionate support of Citizens Against Terramor.

Petitioners cite their love of nature and their hatred of greed. This note from Julie Parisi Kirby is emblematic of their comments: “We need to protect the wild spaces we have left. Destroying them for something so frivolous is criminal. We’re facing numerous crises: climate, housing, pollution of air, water and land. This project would add to the crises and do nothing to help mitigate them.”

We reached out to Terramor for comment but did not receive a call back by press time.


Article ends



Albany Times Union opinion Terramor Saugerties Catskills

Times-Union Commentary: Sometimes, NIMBY can also be for the greater good

Opinion by Nancy Jainchill
Nov. 9, 2022

More than 25 years have passed since I moved to the Hudson Valley, a move that was done in stages, but I always knew this would be home. I settled on a pretty unexceptional house. My husband urged me to look more, look more. But I wasn’t buying the house. I was buying the land, so I didn’t need to “look more.” I found home on 5 1/3 acres, on a dead-end road that wasn’t yet paved. Land, for me, was priority.

Now, these many years later, I’ve watched as this area has been discovered, perhaps at its height as a pandemic refuge. And I’ve watched as the land has been chopped up and more houses built, with reduced acreage permitted.

The Hudson Valley has become a mecca for people who seek their special homes, but it’s also become a destination for financial opportunism. The response of “Not In My Back Yard” (NIMBY) has been confronted on issues from hotels to low-income housing to wedding/event venues — and to Terramor.

Terramor Resorts, the luxury “glamping” division of KOA, has come along hoping to take advantage of this area’s magic, proposing to construct a 75-tent glamping campground on 77 acres of mature forest. Each tent will have its own bathroom, shower and wood-burning firepit. A total of 89 structures, including a 4,000-square-foot restaurant and wedding/event center, a bar, a 28-person dormitory, an Olympic-size swimming pool, a community fire pit, and a wellness center are planned.

The location is in the midst of a largely residential area in the heart of the Saugerties-Woodstock community, just off of two main roads that converge at an intersection with the highest number of vehicular accidents in the region. Terramor conducted a traffic assessment to determine the impact of the glampers in February, on a Thursday, in the middle of the pandemic. Perhaps they thought no one would notice the timing, how unrepresentative the data would be of traffic during their months of operation — May to November.

There are a lot of community members raising an outcry. Red and white signs shouting “STOP TERRAMOR” catch your attention on most of the roads in the area.

Is this an example of NIMBY for the greater good?

In a recently published essay on ethical travel, the writer advises us to seek out places with sustainable resources. The Hudson Valley Resource Mapper identifies the proposed glamping site as an area of climate interest and unique conservation value, including at least ten acres of thousands-of-years-old wetlands that will be impacted if the project proceeds.
Wetlands provide an important habitat for terrestrial animals. They offer flood resilience. They serve as “nature’s kidney” by improving our water quality through the natural filtration of pollutants.

Here’s Terramor’s solution: Relocate or “offset” the wetlands miles away through a program of credits. I’m not sure how that will help our environment.

Of course there are other concerns. Noise and light pollution have serious detrimental effects on wildlife. Sensory pollution wrought by flooding the environment with human-made light and sound, known to confound the senses of countless animals and obscure the cues they depend upon to survive, will be an inevitable byproduct of 150-375 people enjoying nature. Then there’s the smoke from the 75+ fire pits. The particulates can have a strong negative effect on our health. Experts contend the smoke from just one fire pit compares to the second-hand smoke from 800 cigarettes.

It might seem an irony that in March 2022, when I took my first vacation since the pandemic began, I went glamping. But the site was literally in the middle of nowhere and with many fewer tents. So glamping can be done responsibly, and more in line with environmental concerns, as has been shown with sites that have revitalized worn campgrounds. This is in sharp contrast to what Terramor is attempting, which is the takeover of mature, dense forests with wetlands.

For our community, “Saugerstock,” for the totality of the inhabitants — human and otherwise — this seems to me a case of NIMBY for the greater good.

— Article ends —

Terramor Catskills Saugerties project makes Daily Freeman and WAMC

On Wednesday October 19th 2022, the Daily Freeman of Kingston NY published an article by William J. Kemble entitled “Woodstock residents see conflict over Saugerties glamping plan”. The article is embedded below. A short commentary follows. The text is also below.

The following morning, Thursday October 20th 2022, the editor of the Daily Freeman, Ivan Lajara, appeared on WAMC as part of the Morning Headlines series. The article about Terramor was among the items discussed. Click the link to hear the three minute piece.

Here is a .pdf of the article from October 19th
2022-10-19-Daily-Freeman-Woodstock-residents-see-conflict-over-Saugerties-glamping-plan

Commentary
While we understand that dramatic language yields column inches,*  language like “WW III” and “hardball” are hardly applicable here. In fact, the KOA/Terramor developers have been rather more open and collaborative than previous developers of this land. For example, the article was published just a couple of days after Terramor started testing neighbor’s wells during their own draw-down tests. As we pointed out in that post, these neighborhood tests are not required by law.

Further, KOA/Terramor have not yet really had a chance to play hardball. They are going through the expected process required by the Town, County, and State. That is a long process and there will be plenty of more opportunities for them to play hardball. We fully expect them to do so when it comes time to do the full SEQR process, for instance. That is their job. It is we citizens’ job to see that the Town Planning Board does its job overseeing the process and holding developers to account for every dotted “I” and crossed “T”.

Any reader of this site will know that we are no apologists for the developers, but it’s important that we keep a realistic and clear-eyed perspective on this process.


* We understand that reporting is a difficult business and that quotes are occasionally misheard, taken out of context, or mis-represented. We are assuming that the reporting and writing of this Daily Freeman article is accurate.



In case the .pdf does not display, here is the text of the article:

— article starts —

Woodstock residents see conflict over Saugerties glamping plan – Daily Freeman
William J. Kemble – Daily Freeman, Kingston NY – October 19, 2022 at 6:39 p.m.

WOODSTOCK, N.Y. — Residents with the Citizens Against Terramor group are forecasting a conflict against Saugerties if a proposed 75-site high-end camping, or glamping, project is allowed to proceed on 77.15 acres off of state Route 212 along the town line.

Group representative Paul Thurman following a Woodstock Town Board meeting Tuesday said there is a low sense of optimism that either Woodstock or Saugerties town officials will take concerns about the proposed Terramor development seriously.

“We’re afraid we’re headed for World War III because we’ve got a lovely caretaker government and these (developers) are playing hardball,” he said. “They’re going to walk right over use and are going to affect the quality of life in this community forever.”

Thurman, who noted that he spent eight years as a Buddhist monk, said the level of concern among the business community and residents has risen tremendously because of plans that include a 4,000-square-foot restaurant and events center, 28-person staff dormitory, an Olympic-sized swimming pool, a community fire pit, wellness center, maintenance building and a dog park.

“I hate conflict but the people who are coming at us are not nice people,” he said.

During the past year, residents have complained to Saugerties Town Board members about the need to reduce speeds along state Route 212.

However, Woodstock resident Richard Buck noted that the estimated 25,000 vehicles arriving over a seven-month period is a looming nightmare for existing community centers such as the Woodstock Jewish Congregation and the Woodstock Day School. In materials provided to the board, he noted the accident rate at the intersection of Glasco Turnpike and state Route 212 is “already five times” the state average.

“This is going ravage the community,” he said. “I know that Woodstock (town officials are) reluctant to get involved because this is a Saugerties problem,” Buck said. “But this is not a Saugerties problem. This is a Woodstock problem … this just does not belong here.”

However, in minutes from the July 19 Saugerties Planning Board meeting, officials wrote that they considered the traffic impacts to be low. “On average the proposed use would generate 17 (morning) trips and 22 (afternoon/evening) trips,” they wrote. There is a 100 trip threshold for requiring a traffic study. There was too insignificant of a change in traffic impact to require any changes (in the plan).”

In the Saugerties town material, Terramor officials said that the site would primarily be used between May and October, follow national Dark Sky guidelines to minimize light emissions, have a “strict noise” policy for “quiet hours beginning at 10 p.m., and would have about 25% of guests use fire pits that come with the camping sites.

Saugerties Supervisor Fred Costello said that comments from Woodstock residents would have the weight of Saugerties residents’ comments because the impacts would be a shared burden.

“I think the Planning Board will consider the concerns equally,” he said.

“I don’t believe there’s a need for them to be aggressive,” Costello said. “I think if they make the case for whatever concerns they may have, I’m confident our Planning Board will weigh those concerns equally and as considerately as those concerns on the Saugerties side. We certainly don’t want to be a bad neighbor.”

— article ends —

Well testing starts on Terramor property and surrounding neighbors – Plus catch-up on other matters


On Monday October 17th, Terramor started testing the first of three proposed wells on their site. They also started testing 4 or 5 wells on surrounding properties. Tests had originally been scheduled for 24 hours, but after input from a hydrologist (whose letter you can see below), the time span was expanded to 72 hours.

Terramor’s testing of neighbor wells is not required by any regulation of the state, Ulster County, or the Town of Saugerties. Results from these test will be shared with the NYSDOH, the Town, and the neighbors. Tests are done to find out in what ways the pumping of the Terramor wells might affect nearby wells. The technology used is “sonic water level meter” and readings are to be taken every two hours. As the hydrologist’s letter points out, this form of testing is sub-optimal. Thus, several neighbor well will also be monitored using a more precise transducer system, and readings take every five minutes. It is possible that the Planning Board ot the DOH may require further testing later.

Here is the copy of the letter sent by the hydrologist to KOA/Terramor and the Planning Board:
2022-10-04-Hydrologist-Letter-Terramor-Aquifer-Test-Recommendations

If you cannot see the embed above, here is a .pdf of the letter: 2022-10-04-Hydrologist-Letter-Terramor-Aquifer-Test-Recommendations


A note about one particular claim from the developers’ response to NPV comments – With history and links
This letter was sent to the Planning Board on September 29th 2022. It lays out the shortcomings of one particular part of Terramor’s response to the Planning Board’s consultant’s (NPV) comments on the initial submission.

— letter starts —
September 29 2022

For distribution to the Public file and members of the Saugerties Planning Board

Members of the Planning Board,
I write with a note about one specific paragraph in the LA Group/Terramor August 1st response to NPV’s July 11th comments.
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1gttGf_uZuZyJn55QLDcL2RiI8IKfJ3eT/view?usp=sharing (OR: https://bit.ly/Terramor-response-to-NPV)

As part of the developers’ August 1st response to NPV comments they write:

(NPV comment bottom of page 4)

f. (s) Nuisances. The proposed use shall not be more objectionable to nearby property owners or occupants by reason of noise, fumes, vibration or lighting than would be the operations of a permitted use.

[snip]
LA Group/Terramor response top of page 5:

With the provision of central water and sewer like the proposed facility, giving consideration to development constraints posed by the presence of wetlands and steeper slopes on the property, and considering that the original proposal for the South Peak subdivision on the property contained 43 single family homes, the Applicant estimates that the site appears capable of supporting approximately 50-60 single family homes. Each of these homes would have their own associated noise, fumes, vibration and lighting.

This paragraph is both artfully worded and elides historical facts:

1)The South Peak project was originally proposed as 41 lots (August 2004) – https://drive.google.com/file/d/1KLAkTYyd6_A09JoEB95BzSdtLLxd-txY/view?usp=sharing (OR https://bit.ly/South-Peak-original-41-lot-drawing)

2) The Conditional Final grant was for 23 lots (April 2007) https://drive.google.com/file/d/10g0QTKxRClLANjOgrLOZYZFFNOPlNwww/view?usp=sharing (OR https://bit.ly/South-Peak-Conditional-Final)

3) And the final design was for 22 lots (May 2011) https://drive.google.com/file/d/1K0qq-gmrzf4nIUBJ39V4592XzhBQvOJm/view?usp=sharing (OR https://bit.ly/South-Peak-UCDH-22-lots)

During this years-long process the Board repeatedly noted the extreme difficulty of the land, the UCDH granted permits for 18 septics (later increased to 22 by dint of redrawing lot lines), and there were countless other revisions along the way.

To now claim that “the site appears capable of supporting approximately 50-60 single family homes” is preposterous. I can imagine the Board laughing harder at this claim than they did when first Mr. Rothe proposed 41 lots back in 2004. Building techniques may well have improved, but not that much. Indeed, our standards for roads, wells, septics and the like have probably gotten tighter over the years, making the 50 to 60 figure even sillier.

While I am confident that members of the Board with long memories will have picked up on the ridiculousness of this particular LA Group/Terramor claim, I wanted to bring special attention to it. Board members will have to decide for themselves to what extent this puffery speaks to the credibility of other LA Group/Terramor responses to the NPV comments.

Thanks for your efforts and for your time.

Regards

Mark Pisani
— letter ends —
Here is a .pdf of the letter: A note about one particular claim from the developers’ response to NPV comments – With history and links


There were no other submissions in the public file as of October 17th, 2022. Terramor did not come up at the October 18th Planning Board meeting.


Added a simple page to the site with instructions on how to write a letter about the Terramor Catskills Development.

Well-testing proceeds on Terramor property

Well water testing

Immediate neighbors of the Terramor property will notice increased activity on the property over the next couple of weeks.

As announced a while back, contractors for the developer will be testing three wells. Tests should start Friday September 16th and continue for up to three weeks. Neighbors may see heavy equipment moving and will hear generators.

There will be several steps to the testing:

  1. First, each well will undergo “step tests”. These tests may happen simultaneously at each of the three wells.

    A step-drawdown test (or step test) is a single-well pumping test designed to investigate the performance of a pumping well under controlled variable discharge conditions. In a step-drawdown test, the discharge rate in the pumping well is increased from an initially low constant rate through a sequence of pumping intervals (steps) of progressively higher constant rates. Each step is typically of equal duration, lasting from approximately 30 minutes to 2 hours. Each step should be of sufficient duration to allow dissipation of wellbore storage effects. (From http://www.aqtesolv.com/pumping-tests/step-drawdown-tests.htm

    Pressure in the well is also measured all during this process.

  2. Next, each well will be subjected to a “constant flow” test.

    A control well is pumped at a constant rate and water-level response (drawdown) is measured in one or more surrounding observation wells and optionally in the control well itself. The goal of a constant-rate pumping test is to estimate hydraulic properties of an aquifer system such as transmissivity, hydraulic conductivity and storativity (storage coefficient). (From http://www.aqtesolv.com/pumping-tests/constant-rate-pump-tests.htm)

    A constant flow test will last at least 24 hours, but should likely last longer than that to generate more accurate data.

  3. Finally, immediately after each of the constant flow tests at each individual well, samples of the water will be taken for analysis.

Readers may remember that Terramor has expressed a willingness to “test neighbor wells while we test ours”. We have contacted Terramor to find out about this and have been told that they are working on it (2022-09-24). At a minimum, it seems that these neighbor tests should include all wells withing 1000 feet of Terramor property lines, should include water quality sampling (for contaminants) and, most importantly, tests to see if neighbor wells react **during** Terramor’s constant flow tests. These tests would likely involve dropping a transducer down the neighbor’s well bore hole and taking pressure measurements at short, repeating intervals for the duration of the test. The most accurate data would be obtained by minimizing household water use for the duration of the test.

We will update this site as we get more details of how neighbors might participate in testing.

As always. please advise errors or omissions.

New submissions to the Planning Board from Terramor, lawyers, etc. Including revised maps.

Another catch-up post with new documents submitted to the Saugerties Planning Board. This brings us up to date on all documents submitted up until Monday August 22.

Most interesting, and relevant, is the Terramor submission with responses to the Town Consultants (NPV) comments. The NPV comments were dated at 07-11-2022 and the Terramor responses are dated 08-01-2022. This submission contains, among other things, many responses from Terramor to the NPV coments, and:
• Subdivision (lot consolidation) Application Form, surveyor’s Lot Consolidation Plan, and a separate envelope containing the subdivision application fee.
• General Site Plan Application Form – the application form submitted in July has been updated and is signed by the Applicant and by me.
• Alliance Source Testing proposal for conducting a Sound Impact Study
• Revised Water Supply and Treatment Basis of Design (BOD) Memo
• Revised Wastewater Collection and Treatment BOD Memo
• Program Information for Ducks Unlimited In Lieu Fee (ILF) Mitigation Program
• Revised FEAF Part 1
• Preliminary Construction Schedule
Finally, the submission includes revised maps which reflect Terramor’s adjustments following the Consultants’ comments.

We also have:

Here is the cover letter submitted with the Terramor responses. In this cover letter they simply lay out a précis of the submission’s contents:
Terramor Cover Letter for 08-02-2022 submission (pdf)
Terramor Cover Letter 08 02 2022 Page 1 of 2
Terramor Cover Letter 08-02-2022 Page 2 of 2

Here is the full .pdf of the Terramor response to the Town Consultants (“NPV”) comments from July 11 2022. (You can see those original NPV comments here)
Terramor Responses to 7-11-2022 NPV comments submitted 08-01-2022 (pdf)

And here is a gallery of all 65 pages in that submission

Terramor-Responses-to-NPV-comments-submitted-08-02-2022-01

Image 1 of 65


————-

Here is the letter sent on August 12th by Daniel J. Tuczinski, the lawyer hired to oppose Terramor, to the Saugerties Planning Board laying out more reasons to be skeptical of Terramor’s Special Use Permit application. This letter also includes the environmental consultant’s most recent report.
Daniel-J-Tuczinski-Lawyer-Letter-to-Town-of-Saugerties-Planning-Board-08-12-2022 (pdf)
And here is a gallery of all 5 pages of the letter:

Daniel-J-Tuczinski-Lawyer-Letter-to-Town-of-Saugerties-Planning-Board-08-12-2022_page-0001

Image 1 of 6


And here is the text of the letter. We include it here mostly for search purposes:

VIA EMAIL and REGULAR MAIL (chowardpost@gmail.com)
Mr. C. Howard Post, Chairperson Town of Saugerties Planning Board
4 High Street
Saugerties, New York 12477

Re: Terramor Catskills Glamping Project Proposal

Dear Mr. Post,
As a follow up to my letter to the Board dated July 18, 2022, I am writing on behalf of my clients to provide additional information which we ask the Board to seriously consider. It is clear from the attendance at last month’s Board meeting and the concerns expressed by many members of the Saugerties and Woodstock communities, that there is substantial opposition to the Terramor Glamping Proposal (the “Project”).

An objective review of the Terramor application and the Saugerties Town Code, leads to the inevitable conclusion that this project does not fit within the MDR Moderate-Density Residential District (the “District”) in which the Project would be located. In a letter dated June 2, 2022 from the Town of Saugerties Building Inspector to the applicant’s consultant, the LA Group, suggested that the Project can be located within the District as a special permitted use. However, the Building Department has no authority or jurisdiction to make determinations such as this and apparently confused projects, as a close review of the letter suggests that he was referencing another project on another parcel called the Auto Camp which has no application to the Project. Moreover, while conceding the very ambiguous language in the Town Code in what he called transient usage (Hotels, Motels, Lodges, Camps, Short Term rentals- Air B&B’s), he referenced Descriptions # 7033 and # 7032 of OSHA’s Standard Industrial Classification (“SIC”) Manual, cited in the Town Code which classify establishments by their primary type of activity. A review of these descriptions reveal that the definitions contained therein clearly do not apply to the Project and actually prohibit its location in the District.

The concession of the Building Inspector concerning the very ambiguous language in the Code concerning the definition of Lodges, Camps and the like, reinforces the need for this matter to be referred to the Zoning Board for an interpretation as to whether this project is prohibited within the District. While the applicant has chosen to argue that its project is entitled to a Special Use Permit and Site Plan Approval under the Code definition of Lodging Places, the corresponding category of uses are narrowly defined. Case law from the New York Supreme Court, Appellate Division is instructive on the procedure to be followed where there are pertinent ambiguities in a Zoning Code. In the case of Catskill Heritage Alliance, Inc. v. Crossroads Ventures, LLC, the Third Department opined that “to the extent that there were pertinent ambiguities in the zoning code, the Planning Board was obligated to request an interpretation from the Zoning Board of Appeals before rendering it’s determination.” 161 A.D. 3 1413, 1415, 77 N.Y.S. 3d 728,731 (2018).

While the definitions contained in the District regarding a Special Use Permit concerning lodging and camping are narrowly defined, the project proffered by Terramor is anything but. Terramor refers to itself as an “Outdoor Resort”, with multiple uses including 75 fixed station camping units, employee housing; lodging building which is not actually used for lodging; reception center, restaurant/bar, pavilion, and approximately 60,000 square feet of building. In short, under no reasonable interpretation does the foregoing “glamping” project fit within the applicable and narrow special use permit definitions for the District.

Beyond the legal arguments as to why the Project cannot proceed before the Planning Board at this time, there are numerous technical and environmental deficiencies which the Board needs to consider. Submitted herewith is a comment letter and report from Sterling Environmental Engineering, P.C. dated August 11, 2022 setting forth additional concerns. One of the insightful points made in the Sterling letter is that given the complexity of the application and numerous issues, the Planning Board should retain independent experts to conduct independent studies to assist it with the proper evaluation of the Project. It is not uncommon for planning boards to retain expert consultants at applicants’ expense, to assist it in assessing and reviewing the relevant issues associated with a project. While applicant has its own consultants who are presenting information to the Planning Board, they are obviously employed by Terramor whose objective is to secure the necessary approvals for its project. Accordingly, it cannot be argued that Terramor’s consultants are unbiased and independent. This was highlighted at the last Planning Board meeting when the findings and methodology employed by the Terramor traffic consultant were rightfully questioned and challenged by Planning Board members.

At the last Saugerties Planning Board meeting, the Board adopted a resolution sending out a Notice of Intent to act as lead agency in connection with the project. The involved agencies were identified by the applicant in its Environmental Assessment Form under B Government Approvals. The Town Zoning Board of Appeals is an entity listed under Government Approvals and for the reasons discussed herein, obligated to consider whether the definitions contained in the Zoning Code permit this project. However, Terramor omitted the Zoning Board of Appeals as an involved Agency whose approval (s) is required. Accordingly, a new Notice of Intent to act as lead agency should be send to the Zoning Board of Appeals at this time.

Finally, given the community concern and opposition to the Project as presently proposed, we respectfully request that the Planning Board consider the information and issues identified herein and in the Sterling Environmental letter and refer this matter to the Zoning Board of Appeals forthwith.

A copy of this letter is letter is being filed electronically with the Planning Board and being provided to all Planning Board Members for their review and consideration.

Thank you for your time and attention.

Very truly yours,

O’Connell and Aronowitz
By: Daniel J. Tuczinski

And here is the text of the most recent report from the environmental consultant

(TO:) Daniel J. Tuczinski, Esq. O’Connell & Aronowitz
Subject: Terramor Outdoor Resort, Saugerties, NY
STERLING File #2022-49

Dear Mr. Tuczinski,
Sterling Environmental Engineering, P.C. (STERLING) has the following additional comments regarding the proposed Terramor Glamping project in the Town of Saugerties, New York.

1. This is a complex application with multiple uses not expressly allowed under the zoning code. The property is zoned Moderate Density Residential (MDR) which authorizes single family residential with minimum lot size of 20,000 square feet (sf) if served with central sewers and wastewater treatment. The applicant represents that due to wetlands, steep slopes and other development constraints that only 19 acres are developable. Other uses authorized by Special Permit should not be of greater density than the single-family residential development that is of right.

2. The bulk table of the zoning code (see https://ecode360.com/attachment/SA2874/SA2874 245a%20Sch%20of%20Dist%20Use%20Reg.pdf) indicates that lodging places (including camps and RV parks), publicly operated campgrounds, and logging camps, may be authorized by Special Use permit. The Terramor project has not been demonstrated to fit into one of these categories. The project appears to present multiple uses that are not expressly authorized. It is recommended that the Planning Board obtain a Code zoning interpretation from the ZBA that the use(s) are appropriate in the MDR.

3. The complexity of the application warrants review by independent experts. It will be beneficial for the Planning Board to retain independent expertise to review the application materials and to conduct independent studies as appropriate.
Areas that the independent consultants should evaluate include the following:

• Impact to the wetlands, habitats, wildlife corridors, rare, threatened and endangered species. An evaluation should be conducted of reasonable alternatives that would be less impactful to the wetlands;
• Traffic;
• Stormwater management, including full review by an independent stormwater expert of the Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP); and
• Noise.

STERLING is currently reviewing the SWPPP for the project to determine if there will be significant impacts from stormwater resulting from the project.

Additionally, the issues raised in our July 19, 2022 letter remain outstanding, including:
• A private Glamping facility is not an identified use of right. Clarity is needed to properly classify the use, which may require a referral to the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) for an interpretation. Additional information is needed to demonstrate the proposed project meets the required standards. Additionally, an opinion may be required from the ZBA due to the multiple uses proposed.
• “Glamping” is not the same as Lodge, Camp and RV Park. It is not clear that glamping is consistent with lodging places eligible for a Special Use Permit.
• The project documents provided for review do not contain an analysis supporting the proposed density of 75 camping units plus the employee housing, lodge building, reception center, restaurant/bar, pavilion, etc. Development density authorized by Special Use Permit should not be of greater density than a development of single family residences in the MDR after deducting areas of steep slopes, wetlands, floodplain, etc. Not all of the 77 acres is developable.
• The application documents do not include a business plan of the proposed development and its operations. Will the restaurant, bar, pool and other amenities be available to the public? Or will use of the facilities be restricted to the guests taking lodging at the facility? This requires clarification as it will affect the traffic projections and overall density of the development. It will also affect the water and wastewater projections.
• Some development is proposed on steep slopes. Site roadways are proposed at 9-10% grades in some locations. Road profiles indicate that 10 feet of road embankment must be constructed in a jurisdictional wetland to access the site. Alternative road configurations should be evaluated to avoid wetland disturbance.
• The Site Plan Application Form incorrectly states a building footprint of 24,672 square feet. This is not consistent based on the architectural drawings set submitted with the Site Plan which indicates a total of approximately 60,000 square feet of buildings including the 75 glamping units. The total non-pervious surfaces stated on the application form also appear incorrect. Non-pervious surfaces include all paved areas and total building footprint.
• A review of the submitted documents does not confirm that a traffic and circulation plan is provided. Further, the fire department should be consulted regarding access for emergency vehicles, parking restrictions, onsite water sources, etc.
• Regarding the plans for treatment of wastewater, a SPDES permit is needed from the NYSDEC to discharge treated effluent to the perennial stream located onsite. An analysis of the assimilative capacity of the stream to handle the wastewater discharge is necessary.
• Additional analysis is also needed on the plans for water supply, including well yield testing and water quality testing to determine final treatment requirements. PFAS and PFOA have previously been detected in these wells. The design for the source, treatment and distribution systems needs to be submitted to the UCDOH for review and approval.
• The nearest residence is approximately 200 feet from the proposed development. In consideration of the multiple uses and associated traffic, a noise study is warranted.
• Additional analysis is needed to determine potential traffic impacts, especially with regard to events if additional staff is required. Traffic study made assumptions based on typical campgrounds that did not include staff. The traffic study should be performed during typical summer months.
• The Hudson Valley Resource Mapper indicates that the development area is a known important area for rare terrestrial animals, and contains wetlands and core forest that is important for sensitive wildlife. The site requires further investigations with respect to habitat for rare, threatened and endangered species.

Please contact me if you have any questions or comments.

Very truly yours,
STERLING ENVIRONMENTAL ENGINEERING, P.C.

Mark P. Millspaugh, P.E.
President Mark.Millsmaugh@sterlingenvironmental.com

————-

Here is the letter from Terramor’s new lawyers asking for their appearance at the August Saugerties Planning Board meeting to be adjourned:
WHITEMAN-OSTERMAN-letter-to-planning-board-08-12-2022
WHITEMAN OSTERMAN Letter to Planning Board 08-12-2022
————-

Here is the letter from Terramor to the Saugerties Planning Board outlining all the community outreach they have done to date:
Terramor-Letter-to-Chairman-Post-8-1-22 (pdf)
Terramor Letter to Chairman Post 8-1-22_page-01
Terramor Letter to Chairman Post 8-1-22_page-02
————-

Finally, we have the revised sheets from the project. These versions of these specific sheets now supersede the sheets originally part of the initial July 1st Special Use Permit application (which you can see here). Note that these items are called “sheets” because they include architectural drawings in addition to maps. This particular set of revised sheets includes new drawings of the two types of tents proposed.
Terramor-Revised-Plan-Sheets-08-01-2022 (very large 14.4 mb pdf with 14 pages)
Here is a picture of the newly revised site plan dated August 1 2022 (click through for larger version)
Terramor Revised Overall Site Plan 08-01-2022
And here is a gallery of all the newly submitted sheets. (Note: These are only sheets which have changed in the August 1 submission)

Terramor-Revised-Plan-Sheets-08-01-2022_page-0001-scaled

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Catching up with the Terramor Public file

Over the last few weeks we have visited Saugerties Town Hall and filed FOIL requests for copies of documents from the Terramor Public file. Today we have three new documents from various times during the process. We are now up to date with the Public file, at least until July 26th.

From June 30 and received by the Saugerties Planning Board on July 11th, we have a short memo from C.T. Male Associates to Terramor. This technical memorandum provides the preliminary basis of design for the water system at the proposed Terramor Outdoor Resort in Saugerties, Ulster County, New York.
Water Supply Biological Oxygen Demand Report 7-1-22 (136K .pdf)

From July 8 we have Terramor’s application to the Army Corps of Engineers for a Approved JD. Here they are asking the ACOE to approve their wetlands delineation. They enumerate the number and nature of wetlands on site, which are tributaries to the waters of the US, and which are not. This is a highly technical 70 page report featuring maps and particular descriptions of various wetlands on the site.
Terramor Wetlands Delineation Report and AJD Application to Army Corps (25 MB .pdf)

Finally, from July 19th we have the Saugerties Planning Board SEQRA Notice of Intent to become Lead Agency. As discussed at the July 19th meeting, the Board distributed this notice of intent the list of agencies enumerated on the third page.
NOI Saugerties Planning Board – Final 7-19-22 (64 kb .pdf)


From June 6 2022 – Determination Memo to Terramor from Saugerties Building Inspector / Zoning Administrator

Town of Saugerties Department of Safety and Buildings and Zoning



Town of Saugerties Department of Safety and Buildings and Zoning
Where does Terramor’s proposed facility fit within the definition in 235-11-1? Is it a Lodge? Camp? Recreational Park?

Early in the planning process for Terramor, and pursuant to a question about the ways in which Saugerties zoning might affect the Terramor development, Alvah Weeks, the Saugerties Building Inspector and Zoning Administrator, wrote to the developers’ designers and clarified the situation as he saw it then.

This memo is dated June 6 2022 and includes a brief discussion of the AutoCamp project and the ways in which it was affected by the “pre-existing business” aspects of the zoning laws. It also discusses the particular terms about “camps” and determines that the project as proposed fitted in to the category of “Camps and Recreational Vehicle Parks”. The memo then cites parts of the zoning determined to apply here.

Here is a .pdf of the Determination Memo to Terramor from Saugerties Building Inspector / Zoning Administrator : Alvah Weeks Terramor Zoning Determination 6-2-22

Here is a gallery of the Determination Memo to Terramor from Saugerties Building Inspector / Zoning Administrator:

Determination Memo to Terramor from Saugerties Building Inspector Zoning Administrator 6-2-22-page-001

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Determination Memo to Terramor from Saugerties Building Inspector Zoning Administrator 6-2-22-page-001


Here are pictures of the Determination Memo to Terramor from Saugerties Building Inspector / Zoning Administrator:
Determination Memo to Terramor from Saugerties Building Inspector Zoning Administrator 6-2-22-page-001
Determination Memo to Terramor from Saugerties Building Inspector Zoning Administrator 6-2-22-page-001

Determination Memo to Terramor from Saugerties Building Inspector Zoning Administrator 6-2-22-page-002
Determination Memo to Terramor from Saugerties Building Inspector Zoning Administrator 6-2-22-page-002

Determination Memo to Terramor from Saugerties Building Inspector Zoning Administrator 6-2-22-page-003
Determination Memo to Terramor from Saugerties Building Inspector Zoning Administrator 6-2-22-page-003

Here is the text of the Determination Memo to Terramor from Saugerties Building Inspector / Zoning Administrator Alvah Weeks.  The formatting may be off and we include the text here mainly for search reasons.
— starts —
 
June2, 2022
The LA GROUP Landscape Architecture and Engineering, P.C.
40 Long Alley, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

Re:  Where does Terramor’s proposed facility fit within the definition in 235-11-1? Is it a Lodge? Camp? Recreational Park?

Mr. Franke,
The Auto Camp project was purchased as a Pre-existing business established by the original owners the Moretti Family during the beginning of Town Zoning. The Town Zoning Law was adopted in 1989 and amended said law in 2008 which includes Sub Section 245-43 “pre-existing Business”. The project was able to expand its existing usage of open space as provided in Sub Sec 245-43 Pre-existing Businesses [C] (1) (B) provided.

Although our Zoning Law is very ambiguous when it comes to transient usage (Hotels, Motels, Lodges, Camps, Short Term Rentals – Air B&B’S) and our Zoning Law Definitions and Schedule of District Use Regulations ($ 245-10) is being scrutinized and revised at this time, the Building Department has determined that the Terramor’s project is clearly defined in the Osha’s Standard Industrial Classification Manual referenced in our Zoning Law in Description # 7033 & 7032, “Camps and Recreational Vehicle Parks”. If I can be of further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact my desk directly at (845) 246-2800 Ext. 332.

Respectfully submitted,

Alvah L. Weeks, Jr. Building Inspector / Zoning Administrator

$ 245-43. Preexisting businesses.

A. This chapter is not intended to restrict the rights of businesses which were in existence at the time of completion of the list of pre-existing businesses developed after the enactment of the Zoning Law of 1989 to continue indefinitely and to expand in accord with the standards or procedures set forth below.

B. Expansion of pre-existing business. Any expansion of an existing building, erection of a new building, or increase of the lot area used by a pre existing business, as permitted within this section, shall be subject to the bulk and area standards of the most restrictive district in which the business is permitted by right in the use schedule. 2) In the event a use is only permitted subject to a special use permit, the standards of the most restrictive district in which such a permit applies shall be used. The new or expanded areas shall also comply with the parking and loading standards established for the use.

(1)

C. Procedures for expansion. Expansion of a pre-existing business in accord with the standards of this chapter is governed by the following procedures: (1) Expansion by right. A pre-existing business may expand as a matter of right to the extent set forth in this chapter. Approval of a site plan shall only be required if the expansion exceeds any of the limits set forth in this chapter. (a) The floor area used or occupied by a preexisting business at the time of enactment of this chapter may be increased by 100% or 2,000 square feet, whichever is more; (b) The open lot area used or occupied by a preexisting business at the time of enactment of this chapter may be increased by 100%; and (c) If no building existed at the time of enactment of the Zoning Law of 1989, a new building with no more than 2,000 square feet of floor area may be erected. (2) Additional expansion. Expansion in excess of the limits in Subsection C(1) shall be allowed by permission of the Zoning Board of Appeals. In making its determination, the Board shall consider the effect of such expansion on adjacent properties and the surrounding neighborhood in terms of traffic circulation, access for fire, police and emergency vehicles, and the general health, safety and welfare of nearby residences. The Board may only deny such a permit upon a finding that the expansion will have a significant adverse effect on such factors. D. Transfer of rights. All rights established in this section shall automatically be transferred to all future owners of the property on which the business is located.

Standard Industrial Classification (SIC)

Description for 7033: Recreational Vehicle Parks and Campsites

Division 1: Services | Major Group 70: Hotels, Rooming Houses, Camps, And Other Lodging Places | Industry Group 703: Camps And Recreational Vehicle Parks

7033 Recreational Vehicle Parks and Campsites Establishments primarily engaged in providing overnight or short-term sites for recreational vehicles, trailers, campers, or tents. Establishments primarily engaged in operating residential trailer parks are classified in Real Estate, Industry 6515.

Campgrounds Campsites for transients Recreational vehicle parks Trailer parks for transients

Description for 7011: Hotels and Motels

Division f: Services | Major Group 70: Hotels, Rooming Houses, Camps, And Other Lodging Places | Industry Group 701: Hotels And Motels

7011 Hotels and Motels Commercial establishments, known to the public as hotels, motor hotels, motels, or tourist courts, primarily engaged in providing lodging, or lodging and meals, for the general public. Hotels which are operated by membership organizations and open to the general public are included in this industry. Hotels operated by organizations for their members only are classified in Industry 7041. Apartment hotels are classified in Real Estate, Industry 6513; rooming and boarding houses are classified in Industry 7021; and sporting and recreational camps are classified in Industry 7032.

Auto courts Bed and breakfast inns Cabins and cottages Casino hotels Hostels Hotels, except residential Inns, furnishing food and lodging Motels Recreational hotels Resort hotels Seasonal hotels Ski lodges and resorts Tourist cabins Tourist courts

7032 Sporting and Recreational Camps Establishments primarily engaged in operating sporting and recreational camps, such as boysand girls’ camps, and fishing and hunting camps. Establishments primarily engaged in operating sports instructional camps, such as baseball, basketball, football, or karate camps, and those operating day camps are classified in Industry 7999.

Boys’ camps Camps, sporting and recreational

Dude ranches

Fishing camps

Girls’ camps

Hunting camps

 Nudist camps

 Summer camps, except day and sports instructional

— ends —

Saugerties Planning Board Consultants make initial comments about Terramor SUP application

Nelson Pope Voorhis consultants to Saugerties Planning Board logo

Nelson Pope Voorhis consultants to Saugerties Planning Board logo
The Saugerties Planing Board employs outside consultants as a matter of course. The company is called Nelson Pope Voorhis and the consultant primarily concerned with Saugerties is Adriana Beltrani. You can see the consultant’s very earliest comments about Terramor from months ago here

The consultant’s July 11th report is quite technical, with many references to Town code and State laws. There is also discussion of the schedule of Planning Board actions in the process. Some questions raised were answered at the July 20th meeting (tent capacity, opening season), others remain to be answered. The developers will soon write back to the Board about specific issues raised herein.

Here is a .pdf of the consultant’s Memorandum to the Planning Board about the Terramor SUP Site Plann Application:
NPV Consultants Review-Terramor-7-11-22

Here is a gallery:

NPV Review-Terramor-7-11-22-page-001

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Here are pictures:
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NPV Review-Terramor-7-11-22-page-007

NPV Review-Terramor-7-11-22-page-008
NPV Review-Terramor-7-11-22-page-008

Here is the text of the NPV Consultant’s Memo to the Saugerties Planning Board about the Teramor SUP Site Plan Application. Formatting is a little off. We add the text here mostly for search reasons.

MEMORANDUM
TO: Howard Post, Planning Board Chair
Members, Saugerties Planning Board

FROM: Adriana Beltrani, AICP  
Max Stach, AICP

Terramor Catskills; SBL 27.2-8-28/32.110
DATE: July 11, 2022
CC: Kevin Franke Applicant Representative
Ahmed Helmi, Applicant Representative
Becky Bertorelli, Planning Board Clerk
Alvah Weeks, Building Inspector
Dennis Larios, P.E., Town Engineer

We are in receipt of the following items:

Determination from Alvah Weeks, Building Inspector, dated June 6, 2022;

Cover Letter prepared by Kevin Franke, dated July 1, 2022;

Site Plan Application not signed, dated July 1, 2022;

Responses to NPV Sketch Plan Comments, prepared by Kevin J. Franke, dated July 1, 2022; Site Plan Set, 86 sheets dated July 1, 2022 including:  

o Boundary Survey prepared by Ausfelt & Waldruff Land Surveyors, LLP  

o Landscape Plans including Existing and Proposed Conditions, Grading and Drainage, Road  Profiles, Lighting, Materials and Planting Plan, prepared by the LA Group  

o Architectural Drawings prepared by Design Group Collaborative

o Sewer and Water Engineering Plans Prepared by C.T. Male Associates

Lighting Cut Sheets, 37 sheets dated July 1, 2021

Full EAF Part 1 prepared by Kimberly White, dated July 1, 2022

Ground Water Sampling Results prepared by ALPHA Geoscience dated December 21, 2021 Traffic Impact Study prepared by GPI, dated June 2022

Stormwater Pol

Wastewater Basis of Design Report

Water Supply Basis of Design Report

We previously reviewed additional documents, enumerated in our March 11, 2022 memorandum.

The applicant seeks site plan and special use permit approval for a 75 unit “glamping” campground including a  wellness center, activity lawns, swimming pool, lodge and facility operations including a maintenance facility,  golf cart storage and on-site employee housing. The project is proposed on two (2) parcels totaling 77.51 acres  in the Moderate Density Residential (MDR) zoning district. The applicant proposes to gain primary access from  Route 212 with emergency access via Cotton Tail Lane.

We have been as thorough as possible in our review but given the size of this submission and time allotted to  review, it is likely that we may have additional comments as the planning and review process proceeds. Our  comments are as follows:

Terramor Catskill July 11, 2022

Process 

1. The Lead Agency Notice of Intent for this Type I action should be circulated along with the Full EAF Part  1 form and a copy of the application. Due to the voluminous size of the application, the Board may  wish to send flash drives or provide a link to the document posted online in lieu of paper copies. If so,  the Lead Agency NOI should indicate how involved and interested agencies may request paper copies.  

a. The Board must wait 30 days to assume Lead Agency status and proceed with SEQR review, as  detailed below.  

2. Ulster County Planning Board review is required. The plans and required forms should be submitted at  this time.  

3. The project site borders the Town Boundary with the Town of Woodstock. Pursuant to GML §239-nn,  the clerk of the Town will need to receive written notice of the public hearing for this application. We  suggest including the Town of Woodstock as an interested agency for SEQR review.  

4. Comment or correspondence should be solicited from the following organization or agencies in  addition to any others identified by the Planning Board:

a. Centerville Fire Department

b. NYS DEC regarding disturbance to wetlands and waterbodies, wastewater (SPDES), biodiversity  and bulk petroleum storage

c. US ACOE for jurisdictional determination of wetlands, possible disturbance permits d. NYS DOT for curb cut permit and sight distance review

e. UC DOH/NYS DOH for public water supply and wastewater permitting, campground permitting,  public swimming pool permitting

f. Town Engineer for SWPPP, water/wastewater and site plan review.  

5. The Board should consider engaging with a traffic engineer to review the Traffic Impact Study.

6. The Board may wish to forward the plans, particularly the architectural drawings, to the Building  Department for Building Inspector review to ensure that applicable codes are met which might relate  to the site plan and layout (see comments below).

7. A public hearing will be required for special use permit review.  

Application 

1. The applicant proposes to merge the two parcels as part of the application, a subdivision application  will be required and should be coordinated through the Planning Board secretary.

2. The application forms must be signed by the preparer.

Planning & Zoning 

3. In issuing a Special Use Permit, the Planning Board must consider the supplemental requirements set  forth in the zoning code and can request additional studies or analyses to support its review. Based on  our review, specific consideration of the following provisions is warranted:  

§245-34.D states:

a. (g) Smoke. No emission shall be permitted of a shade equal to or darker than Ringelmann  Smoke Chart No. 2.

b. (h) Odors. No emission of odorous gases or other matter shall be permitted in a quantity or of a  type that permits it to be detectable, other than by instrument, at the property line. c. (i) Other forms of pollution. No emission of fly ash, dust, smoke, vapors, gases or other forms of  air pollution shall be permitted which can jeopardize human health, animal or vegetable life or  which otherwise contributes to the deterioration of or detracts from adjacent properties. d. (o)Character and appearance. The character and appearance of the proposed use, buildings,  structures, outdoor signs, and lighting shall be in general harmony with the character and  appearance of the surrounding neighborhood and of the Town of Saugerties and shall not  adversely affect the general welfare of the inhabitants of the Town.

e. (q) Sewage treatment and water supply. The adequacy of available sewage disposal and water  supply services supporting the proposed activity or use shall be sufficient to meet the needs of  the proposed activity or use. This consideration shall include, but not be limited to, the  suitability of water supply and sanitary sewage facilities to accommodate the intended use and  adequate means to protect surface and groundwater from pollution.

f. (s) Nuisances. The proposed use shall not be more objectionable to nearby property owners or  occupants by reason of noise, fumes, vibration or lighting than would be the operations of a  permitted use.

g. (v) The design of structures and the operation of the use (including hours of operation) shall  ensure compatibility with surrounding uses and with the scenic and visual characteristics of the  Town.

§245-11.I includes the following paraphrased considerations: 

h. The Planning Board shall consider the following: Overcrowding of units; and the extent to  which noise or light interferes with the use and enjoyment of surrounding properties.  

4. Campsites are now proposed along the western boundary of the site which are located near to existing  residences and residential lot lines. A field investigation conducted on June 7, 2022 showed these sites  are clearly visible from these existing residences. While forest cover is shown on the plans as a buffer,  the forest cover actually lacks significant understory, consistent with mature eastern hemlock forests.  At least 7 or 8 tent sites depict fire pits situated between the tent site and the property boundary. With  the proposed design, a fire is likely to be visible from the existing residences and woodsmoke (both  smell and visible smoke) could carry over to adjoining residential parcels. (See below image which  depicts a residential structure from a camp site proposed at the time.)  

i. The applicant should suggest methods to ensure that these sites meet the above referenced  special permit standards with relation to screening and buffering campsites and campfires from  adjacent residences.

< image missing>

5. An inventory of buildings on the site should be provided on the Project Master Plan Sheet L-2.0  indicating the name of the building, gross building square footage and/or seats, beds or maximum  occupancy for staff and guests. In addition, the ‘Woody 35’ and ‘Woody 45’ sized tents should be more  clearly indicated on the plans. Currently the only enumeration of the number and breakdown of  campsite types is within the Water Supply BOD report. If these tents are intended to be  interchangeable, the Planning Board may wish to establish limitations on the total number of the larger  tent to reflect the water use/wastewater generation and traffic studies.  

6. The comment response letter states that the maximum capacity of a Woody 35 tent is 6 people and for  a Woody 45 tent is 8 people. This equates to a capacity of 510 guests at the facility. The Water and  Wastewater Basis of Design Reports indicate that the maximum capacity of the campsites is 240, which  vastly underrepresents the possible worst-case scenario.  

j. It seems that these lower numbers are based on average occupancy rates from the Bar Harbor site. We question whether this Bar Harbor site is representative of the proposed site in terms  of market economics and demographics.  

k. We defer to the Town Engineer on what standard to design a water or wastewater system, but  to meet the hard-look requirement under SEQR, a “reasonable worst-case standard” should be  utilized, which would be related to full occupancy, or if full occupancy is not reasonably likely to  occur, then some percentage of full occupancy that is reasonably likely to occur. The Planning  Board may wish to impose an occupancy restriction based on the capacity outlined by the  applicant to establish environmental determinations and/or findings, and for the wastewater  and potable water facilities.

7. We question whether traffic impacts from this resort campground should be assessed as a traditional  campground/RV park or as a resort hotel. We suggest that the Planning Board engage with a Traffic  Engineer to review this and other traffic related questions.  

8. Sheets A213, A214. The arrangement of beds for guest tents should be shown on the architectural  plans, and it should be indicated whether these beds are single or bunk beds. We note that “Tent 2”  (we assume this is the Woody 45 model) has two bedrooms while “Tent 1” has one bedroom. It  appears that an indoor and an outdoor shower is proposed for each unit-this should be confirmed.  

9. The capacity of employee housing does not match between the architectural drawings, the water and  wastewater BOD reports, the comment response letter or the EAF project description. The BOD report  states that 6 dorm units are proposed for 30 workers. This would require five beds per dorm building.  Dorm buildings depicted on sheet A210 show 3 beds. If these represent bunk beds, then 36 employees  can be accommodated with 6 to a dorm building.  

l. Further, the comment response letter states that 4 structures are proposed to house 5  employees each, and 2 structures are proposed with a capacity for 4 employees each.  Sheet A212 depicts the studio units with two rooms each containing a full-sized bed. We  assume that these are the 2 structures proposed to house 4 employees each. Is this housing for  couples only?

m. The number of Dorm and Studio units must be called out on the Master Plan Sheet L-2.0.  

10. The BOD report indicates that the General Manager’s House contains bedrooms, but three bedrooms  are shown on the Architectural Drawings. Are these bedrooms intended to house employees or family  members? The Planning Board may wish to limit occupancy to only the manager and/or their family,  especially if water and sewer usage for this building is based on a single family detached residence.  

11. The number of residential and non-residential employees and/or non-employee residents should be  established. The comment response letter states that 42 employees are anticipated, split into two  shifts. The letter totals 28 on-site employees, while the architectural drawings and BOD report indicate  up to 48 individuals could be accommodated within the dorm and studio units. This calculation does  not include the General Manager’s House, as the capacity of this building is not clear (comment #8).

12. The single kitchen provided does not appear to be large enough to support between 24-42 residential  employees, especially if meals are prepared individually by residents at mealtimes. Please verify that  the single kitchen devoted to these employees is enough.  

13. The Building Inspectors should review the site, building and floor plans to ensure compliance with the  Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and other applicable building codes that could impact site design.  We believe this may be a concern with regard to employee housing as depicted in the architectural  plans.  

14. We have counted 168 parking spaces. A parking calculation reflecting the maximum capacity of the  resort should be included on the site plans which differentiates guest parking from employee parking.  The Planning Board shall determine the appropriate number of parking spaces (245-29(a)).  

15. From where will firewood be sourced? Please verify that all firewood will comply with NYS DEC  requirements of 6 NYCRR 192.5.

16. Seasonality. The timing of activities and occupancy of the site must be clarified. Is the General Manager  on site year-round? Are events proposed to take place during a full 12-month period or only from May October?  

17. Dumpsters should be called out on the plans.  

18. We note that 2-3 box truck deliveries could occur per day. Is this anticipated year-round? Where and  when are these deliveries received? It appears that loading space is accommodated only at the  maintenance buildings and the Lodge.

19. Is the restaurant at the lodge open to the public or to guests only?  

20. While the notes sheet lists a diversity of plantings, the landscape plans indicate only the type of  planting proposed (evergreen tree, deciduous tree etc). More detail should be submitted regarding  landscaping given the ecological importance of the site.  

21. Three (3) propane storage tanks are proposed totaling 30,000 gallons – is each tank 10,000 gallons?  These should be clearly marked on the site plans. Liquid propane stored on site must demonstrate  compliance with 6CRR-NY 613-4.1. The applicant should submit drawings, construction details and a  narrative or correspondence with NYS DEC that demonstrates propane tanks are protective of sensitive  receptors referenced in the law. (Law section linked here)  

22. We defer review of the erosion and sediment control plans, grading plans, road profiles, construction  details, water and wastewater concept plans and the SWPPP to the Town Engineer.  

SEQR/Environmental Review 

23. This is a Type I action under SEQR as more than 10 acres is proposed to be physically altered. The Board  should classify the action and notice its intent to assume Lead Agency (a draft NOI is attached). The  Board must allow involved agencies 30 days to contest Lead Agency before taking any further SEQR  action.  

24. In general, all correspondence with agencies and studies conducted should be provided to the Planning  Board. This includes letters or correspondence with the NYS DEC and NYS Department of Health. The  wetland delineation report should be provided along with the request for jurisdictional determination. It is typical for State agencies to provide formal letters upon receipt of the SEQR NOI.  

25. The Ducks Unlimited wetland mitigation program is a new program in the State of New York. It is  unclear if this program has even been authorized at this time. We request documentation from NYS  DEC to confirm that this is a feasible and appropriate mitigation. The applicant should also provide the  Board with additional information about the Ducks Unlimited program, and its applicability in the State  of New York.  

26. We have reviewed the long EAF Part 1 and have the following comments:

a. C.2.c- The project site is part of an “Important Natural Area”, within the Catskill Mountain  physiographic area, Map 2, of the Open Space Plan. Further, the Open Space Vision Map calls  out this physiographic area, including the project site. The response to this question should be  “yes.”

b. D.2.b- We note that 19.13 acres are proposed to be disturbed. We defer to the Town Engineer  and NYS DEC in the review of the SWPPP. This should be reconciled with the land cover  changes indicated in Table I.1.a which indicate the reduction of only 5.0 acres of wetland and  forest. Since almost the entirety of the existing site is forest and wetland it is difficult to  reconcile without further explanation.  

c. D.1.e- We note that the proposed project will be conducted over the course of a 14-month  period. Construction phasing or sequencing should be discussed.

d. D.2.f- Regarding employee housing, clarification is needed and water/wastewater calculations  must match the actual proposed accommodations on site.

e. D.2.g- Please ensure that architectural drawings match EAF. The lodge appears to be 111 feet  long on plans.

f. D.2.b- See above discussion of Ducks Unlimited mitigation. In addition, part ii is left blank  where the applicant proposes stream disturbances. The extent and nature of the stream  disturbances should be explained, even if temporary. NYS DEC permits may be required for  disturbances to the bed or banks of Class B streams, ie “protected streams.”

g. D.2.c, d- We note that the water and wastewater calculations may not be based on the  maximum capacity of the facility per above comments.  

i. In addition, a SPDES permit will be required from NYSDEC to discharge effluent from  the proposed wastewater treatment plant into a protected, Class B stream.

ii. We note that 5 acres of impervious surface is proposed as a result of this project and  defer a review of stormwater management practices to the Town Engineer.

h. D2j- The number of parking spaces does not match the number we counted on the plans, this  should be confirmed (166 or 168?). Please see our comments regarding the TIS and parking  above.

i. D2j- EV charging stations are proposed, these must be shown on the site plans. j. D2k- Please confirm the estimated annual electricity demand. The response is missing a zero or the comma is incorrect. A willingness to serve letter from the local utility should be provided. i. Does this calculation include the proposed EV charging stations?

k. D2o- We note that wood campfires are to be permitted at all hours. This may produce odors  for more than one hour per day.

l. D2p- See above comment referencing bulk storage of liquid propane.

m. D2q- Treatments are proposed for mosquito and tick control 2-3 times per year. Information  regarding the chemicals proposed, application methodologies, safety, hazards and any required  permits must be provided.  

n. E1h- We defer to the Town Engineer regarding water quality assessment.

o. E2h- The project site is within five miles of Big Indian Wilderness and Overlook Mountain. This  response should be “yes.”

27. Based on a review of the Part 1 EAF, we have provided the Board with a draft Part 2 EAF to review. The  Part 2 cannot be adopted until the Board declares Lead Agency, 30 days from circulation of the  attached NOI. The Part 2 identifies the following potential impacts, to be reviewed and confirmed by  the Board at the next meeting:

p. Impacts on Land
q. Impacts on Surface Water
r. Impacts on groundwater
s. Impact on Plants and Animals
t. Impact on Agricultural Resources
u. Impact on Open Space and Recreation
v. Impact on Transportation
w. Impact on Noise, Odor and Light
x. Impact on Human Health

Further Review is needed by the Planning Board to determine whether the proposed action may  impact the following:  

y. Consistency with Community Plans (see comment 28)
z. Consistency with Community Character (See comment 29)

28. When considering the proposed action’s consistency with Community Plans, the Board should consider  whether this project is consistent with the Town of Saugerties 2020 Comprehensive Plan. In particular,  NYS DEC guidance states: “How do the vision and goals described in these plans compare with various  elements of the proposed project? Do any elements of the proposed project conflict with the vision,  goals, and strategies outlined in any of these adopted plans?”

aa. We have attached pages from the Comprehensive Plan that enumerate recommendations  related to Land Use and Development (#6), Economics (Diversify Economic Base, Goal #9) and  Tourism (#13). The following are the goal statements:

i. #6: “The Town and Village support, and encourage, planning policies that promote  environmentally sound development (see Glossary) in all zoning districts and are  responsive to the socioeconomic needs of the communities. These two factors must be  balanced. The open spaces and rural aspects of the area are not replaceable, and any  development should be well thought-out and planned with the future in mind. The  Comprehensive Plan also seeks to strike a balance between open space conservation  and economic development as stated in the Open Space Plan.”

ii. #9: “The Town and the Village should attempt to diversify its economic base by  encouraging a variety of business and employment opportunities.”

iii. #13: “Promotion of tourism will be well-planned to maximize its economic benefit to  the community. Tourism is important to many town businesses. In promoting tourism  and it benefits, the community must consider the potential impacts of tourism  

development, such as additional parking demands, increased traffic, and pollution.”

29. When considering the proposed action’s consistency with Community Character, the Board should  consider the following NYS DEC guidance:

bb. “Community character is defined by all the man-made and natural features of the area. It  includes the visual character of a town, village, or city, and its visual landscape; but also  includes the buildings and structures and their uses, the natural environment, activities, town  services, and local policies that are in place…Changes to the type and intensity of land use,  housing, public services, aesthetic quality, and to the balance between residential and  commercial uses can all change community character.”

— ends —

Initial legal and engineering letters to Saugerties Planing Board about Terramor Overdevelopment

Lawyer with briefaces Terramor Overdevelopment

Lawyer with briefcase Terramor Overdevelopment
Just before the Saugerties Planning board meeting of July 19th, at which Terramor made their first presentation of their SUP application, two letters were delivered to the Board. One was from a lawyer retained by a number of local residents and neighbors to the Terramor project. The second letter was from a consultant engineer hired by the lawyer.

These letters lay out specific issues with the Terramor application as filed July 1st. The first question is whether the planned development is even permitted in this locale, SUP or not.

The lawyer’s letter asks several questions which Terramor has already given answers for. Obviously, there are plenty more. This is the start of a long process.

Here is a .pdf of the Lawyer’s Letter to Chairperson of Town of Saugerties Planning Board 7.19.22
And here are pictures:

Lawyer's Letter to Chairperson of Town of Saugerties Planning Board 7.19.22-page-001
Lawyer’s Letter to Chairperson of Town of Saugerties Planning Board 7.19.22-page-001
Lawyer's Letter to Chairperson of Town of Saugerties Planning Board 7.19.22-page-002
Lawyer’s Letter to Chairperson of Town of Saugerties Planning Board 7.19.22-page-002
Lawyer's Letter to Chairperson of Town of Saugerties Planning Board 7.19.22-page-003
Lawyer’s Letter to Chairperson of Town of Saugerties Planning Board 7.19.22-page-003

The letter from the engineer to the lawyer lays out several issues that come up in an initial review of the Terramor SUP application as filed July 1st. Many areas of concern are identified. This work will continue.

Here is a .pdf of the Engineer’s 2022-07-19 Terramor Initial Project Review_ltr-redacted
And here are pictures:

Engineer-2022-07-19 Terramor Initial Project Review_ltr-redacted-page-001
Engineer-2022-07-19 Terramor Initial Project Review_ltr-redacted-page-001
Engineer-2022-07-19 Terramor Initial Project Review_ltr-redacted-page-002
Engineer-2022-07-19 Terramor Initial Project Review_ltr-redacted-page-002

Engineer-2022-07-19 Terramor Initial Project Review_ltr-redacted-page-003
Engineer-2022-07-19 Terramor Initial Project Review_ltr-redacted-page-003
Engineer-2022-07-19 Terramor Initial Project Review_ltr-redacted-page-004
Engineer-2022-07-19 Terramor Initial Project Review_ltr-redacted-page-004

Here is the text of the lawyer’s letter to the Saugerties Planning Board about the Terramor SUP application:


July 18, 2022

VIA EMAIL (chowardpost@gmail.com)

Mr. C. Howard Post, Chairperson
Town of Saugerties Planning Board
4 High Street
Saugerties, New York 12477

Re: Terramor Catskills Glamping Project Proposal

Dear Mr. Post,

This office represents several residents who have serious concerns about and objections to the pending Terramor Glamping Proposal (the “Terramor Proposal”) currently pending before your Board. It is our understanding that the proposal has substantial opposition, which is not surprising as the project is inconsistent with the Town of Saugerties Zoning Code and the requirements of the MDR Moderate-Density Residential District (the “District”).

As the Board is aware, the District is intended to preserve the area’s rural environment and all the benefits that go along with that, while living relatively close to compatible and interdependent land uses where County and State highways are easily accessible. The definition of the District provides that small-scale convenience businesses designed to serve the adjacent residential population and certain cultural, educational, and recreational uses compatible with a rural environment may also be permitted, subject to conditions designed to protect the residential character of the District.

As you may be aware, the Town and Village of Saugerties Comprehensive Plan 2021 Update identified housing concerns in the MDR and LDR districts. Based upon The Town of Saugerties Open Space Plan limited build out analysis, the density permitted in the MDR and LDR districts is likely to compromise the integrity of important natural and agricultural resources, could have significant impacts on the
town’s natural resources, agricultural resources, scenic views, biodiversity, and rural and historic character. It could also result in economic impacts due to increased costs of services to town taxpayers. See Town and Village of Saugerties Comprehensive Plan 2021 Update
Page 11.

The Terramor Proposal is clearly a threat to the density permitted within the MDR district. According to the Terramor Full Environmental Assessment Form, the Terramor Proposal seeks a permit for a 75-tent glamping campground. These are not ordinary tents that are temporary in nature and can easily be taken down, but rather tents constructed of hard and soft canvas materials situated on a wooden foundation or platform that are permanent in nature. These tents are luxury dwelling analogous to mobile homes, not to be confused with recreational vehicles. The tents will have running water, septic and electricity and are designed to be permanent structures. The Terramor Proposal also proposes multiple additional permanent structures consisting of a proposed lodge that will provide food and beverage services for resort guests, not housing; a swimming pool area; an event lawn pavilion; a wellness tent; a manager’s residence; multiple-family homes for employee housing; and several parking lots. All in all, there will be approximately 90 permanent structures constructed on the premises, which will service up to 480 people on site at a time. In addition to camping activities, the Terramor Proposal’s proponents have proposed to use the site as a venue for weddings and special events.

The sheer size, scope and multiple uses of the Terramor Proposal are inconsistent with the nature of the MDR Moderate-Density Residential District and the concerns expressed in the Comprehensive Plan 2021 Update. As the Board is aware, the projects outlined in the Terramor Proposal are not permitted uses within the MDR Moderate-Density District. As a result, Terramor has applied for a Special Use Permit and Site Plan Approval pursuant to the Town of Saugerties Schedule of District Use Regulations, under Lodging Places. Therein, Lodging Places is defined as having a lodge (50 maximum units), camps and recreational parks. Neither lodge or camps are defined, nor does the Special Permit definition associated with lodging places permit the multitude of structures, improvements and uses of the premises proposed by Terramor. In addition, nowhere in the Code, is there specific support for 75 permanent tents in the MDR Moderate-Density Zone. The number appears to be arbitrary and given the limits of 50 on the number of units for a Lodge, appears to be unwarranted and unauthorized. Indeed, given the definition of lodge under the Zoning Code, it is doubtful that the nonresidential structure called a lodge by Terramor satisfies
the definition of lodge under the Zoning Code.

While Terramor may argue that the additional structures and uses are accessory uses as defined in the Code, that argument is similarly without merit. The definitions of accessory uses are as follows: “Accessory use customarily incident to any uses listed herein, and on the same lot” and “Accessory use customarily incident to any of the uses listed herein, and NOT on the same lot.” Multiple residential buildings, a wellness tent, a swimming pool and wedding and special event venues, along with the multiple uses of the premises as proposed by Terramor, do not satisfy the definition of accessory use under the Saugerties Zoning Code.

In applying the Town Zoning Law to the Terramor Proposal, its application for a site plan approval and special use permit must be denied. At a minimum, given the serious questions as to whether Terramor’s application satisfies the requirements for a Special Use Permit (including whether the multiple structures and uses satisfy the definition of Accessory use) the application must be referred to the Zoning Board of Appeals for a determination before the application can proceed with Planning Board review.

In addition to the legal infirmities and questions as set forth above, there are numerous engineering and development shortcomings and issues which require a hard look at Terramor’s Proposal. Submitted along with this letter is correspondence from Sterling Environmental
Engineering, P.C. and principal Mark Millspaugh, detailing those concerns. As explained in Mr. Millspaugh’s analysis, a substantial amount of information is missing from the Terramor proposal and needs to be provided. Multiple approvals from multiple agencies are required, and thorough and detailed information must be provided by Terramor. Mr. Millspaugh has itemized missing information and items which need to be provided by Terramor, along with areas of concern for the Board’s consideration.

Given the lack of satisfactory information, we reserve the right to submit further comments and analysis once the missing information is received.

A copy of this letter is being submitted electronically to all Planning Board Members for their review and consideration as well.

Very truly yours,
O’Connell and Aronowitz
By : _________________
Daniel J. Tuczinski



And here is the letter from the engineer


July 19, 2022
Daniel J. Tuczinski, Esq. O’Connell & Aronowitz 54 State Street, 9th Floor Albany, New York 12207

Subject: Terramor Outdoor Resort, Saugerties, NY STERLING File #2022-49

Dear Mr. Tuczinski,

Sterling Environmental Engineering, P.C. (STERLING) has initiated a preliminary review of the Site Plan Application documents provided in support of the proposed Terramor Glamping project in the Town of Saugerties, New York. We offer the following preliminary comments.

General:
The proposed development is on two contiguous parcels totaling approximately 77 acres. The parcels will be combined into a single parcel in the MDR zone. The Zoning Code establishes permissible uses in the zone as set forth in the Schedule of Permittable Uses. A private Glamping facility is not an identified use of right. Lodging Places including “camps” are allowed subject to a Special Use Permit. This project as proposed appears to have multiple uses (i.e., a lodge with a restaurant, 75 camp sites, a house, employee dormitories). Clarity is needed to properly classify the use. Such may require a referral to the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) for an interpretation. In addition to the general standards for Special Use Permits in §245-34, special standards for this use, described in §245-11, shall also be considered by the Planning Board in determining whether or not to grant the Special Use Permit. Additional information is needed to demonstrate the proposed project meets the required standards.

The term “camp” is not defined in the Code nor are minimum standards provided for this type of multiple use facility. Design standards need to be considered for density of development, layout, occupancy, etc.

The project documents provided for review do not contain an analysis supporting the proposed density of 75 camping units plus the employee housing, lodge building, reception center, restaurant/bar, pavilion, etc. Accordingly, we were not able to confirm the proposed development density is consistent within the MDR zone and the Town Comprehensive Plan.

The application does not contain an analysis of development constraints to support the proposed density of development. Development density authorized by Special Use Permit should not be of greater density than a development of single family residences in the MDR after deducting areas of steep slopes, wetlands, floodplain, etc. Not all of the 77 acres is developable.

The application documents do not include a business plan of the proposed development and its operations. Will the restaurant, bar, pool and other amenities be available to the public? Or will use of the facilities be restricted to the guests taking lodging at the facility? This requires clarification as it will affect the traffic projections and overall density of the development. It will also affect the water and wastewater projections.

Similarly, more information is needed on the nature of events to be held. Will events be limited only to the glamping guests? Or will day passes be issued to non campers to attend events?

Some development is proposed on steep slopes. Site roadways are proposed at 9-10% grades in some locations. Road profiles indicate that 10 feet of road embankment must be constructed in a jurisdictional wetland to access the site.Alternative road configurations should be evaluated to avoid wetland disturbance.

Site Plan Application Form:
The Site Plan Application Form incorrectly states a building footprint of 24,672 square feet. This is not consistent based on the architectural drawings set submitted with the Site Plan which indicates a total of approximately 60,000 square feet of buildings including the 75 glamping units. The total non-pervious surfaces stated on the application form also appear incorrect. Non-pervious surfaces include all paved areas and total building footprint.

Required Permits and Approvals:
Additional permitting and approvals are needed as follows: o Special Use Permit

  • Water and Wastewater permits needed from NYSDEC and UCDOH
  • NYSDEC and ACOE permits for stream disturbance and wetland Jurisdictional Determination
  • NYSDOT curb cut permit and sight distance review o SPDES discharge permit
  • SPDES construction general permit (Note: Coverage is not gained until all other permits and approvals are issued).

Additionally, an opinion may be required from the ZBA due to the multiple uses proposed. “Glamping” is not the same as Lodge, Camp and RV Park. It is not clear that glamping is consistent with lodging places eligible for a Special Use Permit.

Site Plan review pursuant to §245-33.C requires:

  • Grading and drainage plan including areas of disturbance; o Building plans, elevations and materials;
  • Location,type and screening details ofwaste disposalcontainers and outdoorstorage areas; o Traffic and circulation pattern, including pedestrian, golf cart, delivery and emergency vehicle circulation;
  • Landscaping plans;
  • Stormwater management plan; o Sign plan; and
  • Lighting plans.

A review of the submitted documents does not confirm that a traffic and circulation plan is provided. Further, the fire department should be consulted regarding access for emergency vehicles, parking restrictions, onsite water sources, etc.

Wastewater:
Regarding the plans for treatment of wastewater, a SPDES permit is needed from the NYSDEC to discharge treated effluent to the perennial stream located onsite. An analysis of the assimilative capacity of the stream to handle the wastewater discharge is necessary.

Additional analysis is also needed on the plans for water supply, including well yield testing and water quality testing to determine final treatment requirements. PFAS and PFOA have previously been detected in these wells. The design for the source, treatment and distribution systems needs to be submitted to the UCDOH for review and approval.

In addition to the above issues, the following additional items will need to be evaluated in accordance with SEQRA to determine potential significant environmental impacts.

Noise:
The following items will contribute to noise impacts, as the nearest residence is approximately 200 feet from the proposed development:

  • Dog park
  • Special events
  • Construction phase
  • Golf carts
  • Tree removal
  • Restaurant use on site
  • In consideration of the multiple uses and associated traffic, a noise study is warranted.

    Traffic:
    Recommendations to improve sight distance to the south include tree trimming and clearing south of the proposed site, shifting the 45-mph speed zone transition located near the site to a point 1,500 feet south of the site, and the installation of a radar speed feedback sign northbound in advance of the site. Additional analysis is needed to determine potential traffic impacts, especially with regard to events if additional staff is required. Traffic study made assumptions based on typical campgrounds that did not include staff.

    Alternative designs should be considered to reduce impacts to the jurisdictional wetland.

    Habitat:
    The Hudson Valley Resource Mapper indicates that the development area is a known important area for rare terrestrial animals, and contains wetlands and core forest that is important for sensitive wildlife.

    The site requires further investigations with respect to habitat for rare, threatened and endangered species.

    Air Quality, Odors:
    Wood campfires at the site will potentially negatively impact air quality at residences proximal to the site.

    Solid Waste:
    Impacts regarding solid waste will need evaluation. Measures should be considered to bear-proof onsite waste containers.

    Fire, Police, Emergency Medical Services:

    Impacts to these services need to be evaluated. Local officials must confirm that access is appropriate for emergency response.

    Stormwater Water Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP):
    The document provided to STERLING is incomplete. We will provide comments on the SWPPP separately.

    Please contact me if you have any questions or comments.

    Very truly yours,
    STERLING ENVIRONMENTAL ENGINEERING, P.C.
    Mark P. Millspaugh, P.E. President

Route 212 and Glasco Turnpike – A junction with more accidents than others

Terramor Catskils Traffic study crash history chart

Here are a couple of excerpts from the Terramor Catskills Traffic Impact Study submitted with all the other documents (available here):

  • At the intersection of NY Route 212 and Glasco Turnpike, there were 11 crashes that occurred over the studied period. Of these crashes, 5 resulted in injuries and 6 in property damage only. Right-Angle crashes occurred at a much higher rate than would be anticipated, accounting for 6 of the 11 crashes, and the crash rate was found to be 5.51 times higher than the state-wide average for comparable intersections.[…]
  • Along NY Route 212, from Old Route 212 to Glasco Turnpike, there were 10 crashes that occurred over the studied period. Of these crashes, 2 resulted in injuries and 8 in property damage only. Crashes involving animals or alcohol accounted for half of the crashes. The crash rate for the segment was found to be 2.23 times higher than the state-wide average for comparable roadway segments.[…]

And now we can add one more crash to the list. On Saturday July 16th there was a three-car accident at the junction of Route 212 and Glasco Turnpike in Shultis Cornes, West Saugerties. One of our own neighbors was involved in the accident. Here is her own post about it:


Posted to NextDoor Woodstock Saturday July 16th 2022 – From a screenshot captured 7:02pm

– starts–

Bonnie Monchik

Hi Everyone,

I was just involved in a pretty serious accident on Glasco and Rt 212, some of you may have heard about it. Three cars were involved, me being the luckiest as my car received the least impact.

There were no fatalities. One woman may have been hurt and understandably shaken up and was on a stretcher and taken by ambulance.

I am shaken up witnessing what could have been a fatal accident save for some higher grace. I am extremely grateful for myself, my dog and for the others including a little baby surviving this intact. A miracle.

Since this occurred several hours ago I have shared this with some friends. Three have already affirmed that they have had near accidents on this particular corner which leads me to my next plea.

I shudder to think what would happen should Terramor Glamping Resort be able to go through with their plan as proposed and unload tons of cars daily on to this already busy road and seriously dangerous nearby intersection.

The scope of their plan is unconscionable in this quiet residential neighborhood.
–ends–

We agree. The Terramor Catskills Traffic Impact Study even acknowledges the dangers of Route 212 in this area, suggesting a lowering of the speed limit and other traffic calming efforts. And that’s before we even get to the subject of sight-lines and cutting back neighbors foliage to get the required sightlines. Let’s not forget that this is a State Road. That means that there are several extra layers of administration, planning ad design to get through as compared to a Town Road. It’s much easier for the Saugerties Planning Board and the Town Highway Supervisor to dictate speed limits and traffic calming on Town Roads than on State Roads.

Here is a screenshot of the original post:

Traffic accident Route 212 and Glasco Turnpike Saugerties
Traffic accident Route 212 and Glasco Turnpike Saugerties

See the original page from the Terramor Traffic Impact Study here:
Image of Terramor Traffic study Crash history page 9
Image of Terramor Traffic study Crash history page 9

And here’s the .pdf of the relevant page:
Terramor Catskills – Traffic Study Crash history page 9

See the full Traffic Impact Study here: Terramor-July-5th-Application-07-Terramor-Catskills-TIS_ 6-23-22


Terramor Catskills SWPPP Submission Documents


As part of their submission to the Saugerties Planning Board, most of which can be seen here, Terramor was required to submit an SWPPP (Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan). This is a very large document laying out all sorts of details of how the Terramor Catskills glamping project proposes to deal with water runoff from their development. This is an initial submission of the plan and will be examined by the Town engineer.

The SWPPP also contains extensive details of how construction will go, best practices for ponds, sediment control, etc. etc. etc. There is also a negative declaration from the State, saying that the site does not contain historical artifacts or areas of architectural importance. There is also a map showing that the terrain is not home to endangered species or an area of biological importance (although there is no letter indicating that).

For an idea of how complex this document is, here a few of the several pages showing tables of contents of a few sections:

Here are component parts of the first several sections of the report:

Pages 1 to 22 Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan Including the following sections:
Table of Contents
1.0 PERMIT OVERVIEW AND REQUIREMENTS
1.1 PERMIT OVERVIEW
2.0 SWPPP REVIEW, UPDATE
2.1 SWPPP REVIEW
2.2 SWPPP UPDATE
3.0 SITE ASSESSMENT, EVALUATION AND PLANNING
3.1 PROJECT LOCATION
3.2 PRE-DEVELOPMENT CONDITIONS
3.3 PROJECT TYPE
3.4 PROJECT SCOPE
3.5 HISTORIC PRESERVATION DETERMINATION
3.6 RECEIVING WATERS
3.7 SOILS
4.0 EROSION AND SEDIMENT CONTROL
4.1 EROSION AND SEDIMENT CONTROL PRACTICES
4.2 EROSION AND SEDIMENT CONTROL DRAWINGS
4.3 CONSTRUCTION PHASING PLAN AND SEQUENCE OF OPERATIONS
4.4 EROSION AND SEDIMENT CONTROL PRACTICE MAINTENANCE
4.5 EROSION AND SEDIMENT CONTROL INSPECTION
4.6 CONTRACTOR SEQUENCE FORM
5.0 POST CONSTRUCTION STORMWATER MANAGEMENT PRACTICES
5.1 STORMWATER MANAGEMENT CONTROLS
5.2 GREEN INFRASTRUCTURE PRACTICES/RUNOFF REDUCTION TECHNIQUES
5.3 POST CONSTRUCTION STORMWATER MANAGEMENT D RAWINGS
5.4 HYDRAULIC AND HYDROLOGIC ANALYSIS
5.5 COMPARISON OF PRE AND POST CONSTRUCTION STORMWATER RUNOFF
6.0 POST CONSTRUCTION STORMWATER MAINTENANCE
6.1 MAINTENANCE TO BE PERFORMED
7.0 CONSTRUCTION WASTE
8.0 OFFSITE VEHICLE TRACKING
9.0 TEMPORARY STABILIZATION FOR FROZEN CONDITIONS
10.0 SPILL PREVENTION PRACTICES

——-
Pages 33 to 46 – Notice of Intent
——-
Pages 49 to 63 Stormwater Management Report Including the following sections:

1.0 INTRODUCTION
2.0 PROJECT DESCRIPTION
2.1 SITE LOCATION
2.2 PROJECT DESCRIPTION
2.3 SOIL CONDITIONS/SOIL TESTING
2.4 CURVE NUMBERS AND RAINFALL DATA
3.0 EXISTING CONDITIONS
4.0 PROPOSED CONDITIONS
5.0 NYSDEC DESIGN CRITERIA
5.1 SITE P LANNING TO PRESERVE NATURAL F EATURES
5.2 WATER QUALITY VOLUME (WQV)
5.3 RUNOFF REDUCTION VOLUME (RRV)
5.4 CHANNEL PROTECTION VOLUME (CPV)
5.5 OVERBANK FLOOD (QP) AND EXTREME FLOOD (QF) ATTENUATION
6.0 PROPOSED STORMWATER FACILITIES
6.1 PRETREATMENT
6.2 TREATMENT
7.0 POST-CONSTRUCTION MAINTENANCE REQUIREMENTS
7.0 REFERENCES

——-
Pages 65 to 99 Soil Report
——-
For more parts of the report Here is a very large Google Drive share of a pdf (92MB) of all the pictures I took. There are pages and pages of hydrological flow calculations and much more.
——-
The SWPPP also includes maps:
W1 Pre Development Watershed Map
W2 Pre Development Watershed Map
SK1 Soil Inventory
…and even an inventory of possible tree plantings:

Plant Schedule Terramor
Plant Schedule Terramor



NOTE: I am not an engineer. Naming conventions, technical details and much else may be correct, incorrect, or wildly off-topic.

About Terramor overdevelopment and the July 19th Saugerties Planning Board Meeting

Terramor Catskills Saugerties planning board meeting

NOTE: We’ve had some questions about the venue for the July 19th Saugerties Planning Board Meeting. The meeting will be in person at the Senior Center on Market Street near Cantine Field. (Map here).
As of July 18th at 12:43pm, the Town website had not been updated and still had outdated information on it. The Planning Board has tried to get the Town website updated, but it hadn’t happened yet.

Terramor Catskills is a large “glamping” project planned for a 77 acre parcel of land stretching from the northeast side of Route 212 near South Peak Vets, around to Cottontail Lane off Glasco Turnpike.

This subsidiary of KOA proposes 75 individual glamping tents. Each tent will be able to sleep between 2 and 5 people and will have its own bathroom and fire pit. The Terramor development will also feature a lodge with restaurant, a pool, grilling stations, an events pavilion, employee housing and various other facilities. The application contains a looped road crossing several wetlands, several wells, a septic treatment plant releasing treated water into a wetland, several parking lots, many stormwater ponds, and many hiking trails.

All of this will be described by the developers in their appearance at the Saugerties Planning Board on Tuesday July 19th, at the Senior Center on Market Street near Cantine Field (map here). The meeting starts at 7:30pm, but the Terramor project is part of “Old Business” and thus is unlikely to happen before 8:30pm. Realistically, it might be later.

NOTE: This is not the Public Hearing part of the process. That will happen at a different, later, meeting of the Saugerties Planning Board. The earliest that a Public Hearing could happen is August 16th.

This is a very large project in a quiet part of Saugerties. It requires careful examination and a lot of scrutiny. It is vital that concerned citizens show up in numbers at this first meeting. This shows the Board and the Terramor developers that community concerns must be taken seriously.

July 19th 2022 Saugerties Planning Board agenda retrieved July 11, 2022 - includes Terramor
July 19th 2022 Saugerties Planning Board agenda retrieved July 8 July 11, 2022 – includes Terramor (.pdf archived locally July 11th)

Again, while the public is encouraged to attend the meeting, this is NOT the time when members of the public will be able to stand up in front of the Board and air their own views. Members of the public *can* (and should) write to the Board to express their concerns about Terramor over development. If you write to the Board, send an electronic copy to Becky Bertorelli (BBertorelli@saugertiesny.gov), Recording Secretary, asking her to distribute to Board members. To make sure your letter is part of the public record, please say so expressly and particularly.

Terramor Catskills Resort makes official submission to Saugerties Planning Board – Documents within

Overall site Plan for Terramor Catskills Glamping Resort as submitted July 5th 2022

Here are the documents submitted to the Saugerties Planning Board by Terramor Catskills Resort. These were submitted by the July 5th deadline for the July 19th Planning Board meeting.

The submission consists of 10 documents, 8 of which are contained here. We hope to add the final two documents later. one of the missing documents (#1) is a cover letter, and thus not so important. The other missing document (#8) is a large SWPPP (Stormwater Management) document which we hope to access soon.

Documents are available in a variety of ways:
We have archived them locally on this site (see links below)
We have a Google Drive here: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1I7U4bM1e7wFXYMvHc6sqgeXZ48cL8Z1j?usp=sharing
We have a zip file containing all 8 files here (97.1 MB)

1) Cover letter

2) General Site Plan Application: Terramor-July-5th-Application-02-Terramor-Rev-Town-Site-Plan-App-7-1-22 (202KB)

3) Terramor Responses to NPV Sketch Plan Comment Terramor-July-5th-Application-03-Terramor-Responses-to NPV-3-14-22-Comments_7-1-22 (215KB) (NPV are the Town consultants. This document is a response to their initial comments, which you can see on this page)

4) This is the main application, with drawings, maps and the like. We have extracted the new site plan drawing/map just below.
Here is the full Terramor Plan as set July 1st and filed for the July 19th meeting:
http://southpeaknabe.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/07/Terramor-July-5th-Application-04-Terramor-Plan-Set_7-1-22.pdf
WARNING! VERY LARGE PDF FILE (83MB)

We have broken it up into smaller chunks below:

5) These are lighting details, with brochure: Terramor-July-5th-Application-05-Terramor-Lighting-Cut-Sheets-7-1-22 (4104KB)

6) Here is the Full Environmental Assessment Form Part 1: Terramor-July-5th-Application-06-Terramor-FEAF-Part 1_7-1-22 (3791KB)

7) Traffic Impact Study: Terramor-July-5th-Application-07-Terramor-Catskills-TIS_ 6-23-22 (7246KB)

8) SWPPP not yet available to us(Update: SWPPP details here)

9) Wastewater Report, including plans for wastewater treatment: Terramor-July-5th-Application-09-Wastewater-BOD-Report-7-1-22 (374KB) (BOD stands for “Biochemical Oxygen Demand” or “Biological Oxygen Demand” (USGS))

10)
A very basic memo about well water and distribution thereof: Terramor-July-5th-Application-10-Water-Supply-BOD-Report-7-1-22 (136KB)

These documents form the first basis for the Saugerties Planning Board to examine the development. The Board will also have input from their own Town Planner, consultants, and various other agencies. This is the beginning of a very long process.

Interested parties can use these documents to send letters to the Planning Board addressing technical (and philosophical) issues raised by the Terramor project, including potential claims of the trouble with Terramor over development.


Terramor Glamping Resort Catskill issues July 18th invite to concerned community and neighbors

Terramor invite July 18th 2022

Terramor invite July 18th 2022

Edited July 15th 2022
NOTE: If you can spare only one evening out of your week, please come to the Saugerties Planning Board Meeting on Tuesday the 19th. It is very important that we have many bodies in the room on Tuesday evening.
Click here to see more details about the Terramor appearance at the Saugerties Planning Board meeting on Tuesday July 19th
If you do decide to come on Monday, please eat the free food, listen carefully, and be skeptical.

Today, Monday July 11th, Terramor emailed an invite to many members of the community and concerned neighbours. The invite is for July 18th (the day before their formal presentation to the Saugerties Planning board.

This is an open invite. Even if you did not get an invite in your email (check spam and “Promotions” boxes), they say you are welcome to attend. Make sure to RSVP. One supposes that if a large number of folks respond, Terramor may have to move the event.

This will be a preview of the dog and pony show for the following night. But it should also include some new faces from their side. Possibly the manager of the Maine site also.

Given that we will not have the opportunity to ask questions of the engineers and developers at the Planning Board meeting the following night, this could be a good moment to acquire more knowledge and thus more points to use in our own approaches to the Planning Board.

Here is the text of the invite:

Dear Neighbors & Community Members,

Please join us on Monday, July 18, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. to learn more about our plan submittal to the Saugerties Planning Board.

While we had originally planned to host an informative meeting with you on July 26th, after the Town of Saugerties Planning Board had a chance to provide us feedback, we recognize there are some new concerns and unanswered questions from many of or our neighbors. In order to continue our transparent and open conversations, we want to review the plan submittal, discuss findings from our studies, and answer any questions or concerns you may have prior to the planning board meeting.

What to expect:

Review submitted plan
Major findings from studies: traffic, water, sewage, etc.
Operational forecast with tent density
Special events forecast & policies
Hear first hand from Terramor’s General Manager at our Bar Harbor location

Who is attending:

Ahmed Helmi – Real Estate Director
Jenny McCullough – Director, Brand & Operations
Henry Sirois – General Manager, Terramor Bar Harbor

Once again, the event will take place at Cucina. We will provide light appetizers, coffee and tea. Please RSVP to communityrelations@terramoroutdoorresort.com to ensure enough seating.

Hope to see you there,

Jenny McCullough
Director, Brand & Operations
Terramor Outdoor Resort



We are working on a post which includes documents from the formal Terramor submission to the Saugerties Planning Board. That post should be up later this evening, Monday July 11th.

Terramor glamping project formally added to Saugerties Planning board agenda for July 19th 2022

agenda

agenda
As expected, the Saugerties Planning Board has added Terramor to the agenda (opens in new tab) for the July 19th meeting. Agendas can, and do, change all the time. Go to the link above to see updated agenda.
July 19th 2022 Saugerties Planning Board agenda retrieved July 11, 2022 - includes Terramor
July 19th 2022 Saugerties Planning Board agenda retrieved July 8 July 11, 2022 – includes Terramor (.pdf archived locally July 11th)
The meeting will take place Tuesday July 19th at 7:30pm in the Frank D. Greco Memorial Senior Citizen Recreation Center, Cantine Memorial Field, 207 Market St, Saugerties, NY 12477

Please note that the Terramor glamping project is last in the “Old Business” section of the agenda. It is *possible* that the Board may move Terramor to the front of the Old Business section if they feel that there are so many members of the public there to hear the presentation. This move is not guaranteed, but it does happen.

The Saugerties Planning Board will hear a presentation from the Terramor engineers and developers. By the time of the meeting, the Board and its consultants should have started their examination of the submissions and all of the content in the public file. They should have their own questions about Terramor overdevelopment and the usual concerns about drainage, traffic, noise, septic, etc., etc.

While the public is encouraged to attend the meeting, this is NOT the time when members of the public will be able to stand up in front of the Board and air their own views. Members of the public *can* (and should) write to the Board to express their concerns about Terramor over development. If you write to the Board, send an electronic copy to Becky Bertorelli (BBertorelli@saugertiesny.gov), Recording Secretary, asking her to distribute to Board members. To make sure your letter is part of the public record, please say so expressly and particularly.

You can also write to individual Board members. We suggest an email to each person (or use BCC)

Fred Costello (Town Supervisor) fcostello@saugertiesny.gov
C. Howard Post (chowardpost@gmail.com) Chairperson
Carole Furman (octagon@hvc.rr.com) Vice Chair
Kevin Brady (kbrady@cerestechnologies.com)
Ken Goldberg (K2535@aol.com)
Michael Tiano (mmt92080@gmail.com)
Len Bouren (labouren@hotmail.com)
Robert Hlavaty (robertahlavaty@gmail.com)
William Creen (willcreen@yahoo.com)
Becky Bertorelli (BBertorelli@saugertiesny.gov) Recording Secretary

Here are the emails formatted for your BCC field using commas as separator:
fcostello@saugertiesny.gov, chowardpost@gmail.com, octagon@hvc.rr.com, kbrady@cerestechnologies.com, K2535@aol.com, mmt92080@gmail.com, labouren@hotmail.com, robertahlavaty@gmail.com, willcreen@yahoo.com, BBertorelli@saugertiesny.gov

Here are the emails formatted for your BCC field using semi-colons as separator:
fcostello@saugertiesny.gov; chowardpost@gmail.com; octagon@hvc.rr.com; kbrady@cerestechnologies.com; K2535@aol.com; mmt92080@gmail.com; labouren@hotmail.com; robertahlavaty@gmail.com; willcreen@yahoo.com; BBertorelli@saugertiesny.gov

We hope to have most of Terramor’s newly submitted documents up on this site soon. Probably by July 12th/13th

An email from Terramor and a few other notes – June 15th 2022

Here is the text of an email recently received by a number of Terramor neighbors. It was sent in the afternoon of Wednesday June 15th. Read on after the email text for a few more updates.


Dear Mark

First and foremost, thank you to everyone who joined us for our meeting and walk through of the property last week. We really appreciate your input and participation in these discussions. We are committed to continuing an open and honest dialogue with the neighborhood.

We understand there are concerns about the project as related to density, proximity to the neighbors, noise, traffic, wildlife, pesticides, water and sewage, and more. We are taking all of your feedback into consideration.

Density:
To clarify, we learned about the opportunity from the town to add additional sites just days prior to our last community meeting. Our decision to propose 75 units took many factors in to consideration; land management, adhering to our light-on-the land techniques, water usage, guest experience and infrastructure costs.

Rather than wait to submit the new conceptual layout with added sites to the Saugerties Town planning board, we made a conscious decision as a team to discuss this layout with you, our neighbors first. We understood that it would be a surprise to many of you, but wanted to be forthcoming so there were not any feelings of being misled when you saw the final design submitted to the town planning board. Because of this, we understand the surprise and frustration many of you felt during last week’s meeting. Our intent was, and still is, to be as open and honest with each of you during our planning process.

Proximity to Neighbors:
As a direct result of our walking the property, we are now looking at relocating a number of tents near neighbors on Raybrook to other areas of the resort.

Noise, Traffic, Wildlife, Pesticides, Water & Sewage:
We want to remind everyone that we have a very strict noise ordinance at Terramor. This will be followed at this property and is a condition of the special use permit. We are also currently working with traffic engineers to ensure the safest entry point and will complete additional studies per their direction.

While we have yet to identify pesticide or insect management for this particular property, we will work to find eco-friendly, safe solutions as an alternative to chemical management. Finally, we in the final stages of evaluating various systems with regards to water and sewer. We will have more information for everyone at our next meeting regarding water and sewer as the various systems are currently being evaluated.

Guests & Special Events:
Our resort caters to families and adults seeking to enjoy the outdoors, comfortably. A typical guest at Terramor will explore the area during the day and come back in the evening for a meal at the Lodge and to relax and unwind either by campfire, poolside or in the privacy of their tent. On average, a Terramor guest will spend $137/person a day in the local community during their visit. Terramor guests are individuals who simply want to get-away, enjoy nature and, in many cases introduce their families to the wonder of the outdoors.

We do plan to host limited weddings and retreats at this location. With that, special events will adhere to our noise ordinance and be required to stay on property to participate in the events. Eliminating the need for Terramor to have additional parking areas and lessening the traffic implications.

What’s Next:
We will be submitting a preliminary conceptual site plan and project details to the Town of Saugerties planning board for their July 19th meeting. The board will then provide technical feedback to us which may require additional work or studies on our end. All the information we submit will be public knowledge. Once the town planning board is satisfied, they will schedule a public hearing. At that time, they will make the decision regarding the special use permit.

We will be holding a third neighborhood meeting on Tuesday, July 26th to review our submitted site plan and project application. At this time, we will share any comments received from the planning board, answer any additional questions and hear your feedback.

Please check your emails soon for more information on this meeting.

Until then, please direct any questions or inquiries to Jenny McCullough at communityrelations@terramoroutdoorresort.com

Best,

Jenny McCullough
Director, Brand & Operations
Terramor Outdoor Resort


A few more points:
1) Before this email went out Jenny called me and we had a chat about the content. She said she would also be calling other neighbors. She asked for my assessment of the walkthrough. I directed her to the post before this one and gave her a quick précis. I emphasized the proximity to Raybrook and traffic issues. We spoke about Teramor seeking out a relationship with DOT to make the traffic issue top of mind there. Especially with regard to sight distances, speed limits and the Glasco/ 212 junction. She mentioned that they are conducting another traffic study and that this would be part of their submissions to the Board.

2) Today (Wednesday 15th) I stopped by the Town Hall and looked again at the Terramor public file. There was nothing new in it since last I visited and posted the documents seen here. I ran in to Kevin Brown, Assistant Building Inspector, and asked about the number of units. He confirmed that it was the his office which clarified the 50/75 units issue to Terramor. Our previous assumption that it was the County was incorrect and I apologize for the error. He was careful to point out that they merely told that developers that code could allow up to 75 tents/sites, but that the Planning Board would have final say over that number. He was also careful to state that the code was derived from rules about camping and RV establishments with transient occupancy. There was a very particular reason for this and I can share privately what that was. He also said that the dormitory for workers was allowed, and a lodge without residential units.

3) With regard to the timing of submissions from Terramor to the Planning Board: If they want to be before the Board July 19th, they have to submit all required paperwork by July 5th. We will do what we can to get those documents on to the site as quickly as possible. We’ll shoot for July 6th. The July 19th meeting will be public and, while we may not yet be able to comment in person, we encourage everyone to show up and listen carefully to the submission. This will be useful for the informal July 26th meeting with neighbors mentioned above in the email from Terramor.

Some takeaways from the June 7th Terramor presentation and site walk

Note: Observations below are my own and likely do not conform to everybody’s experience of the presentation and walk-through. Conversations were happening between neighbours and Terramor, the engineer, and the Board planning consultant. Different folks will have had different encounters and takeaways will vary

June 9, 2022

On June 7th several neighbors of Terramor and other interested parties gathered in the South Peak Vets parking lot, under gloomy and damp skies. A presentation was made by one member of the Terramor staff and one member of the land planners working on the project.

  • The first, and most disconcerting, point offered was that the project’s proposed scope has expanded from 50 tents to 75 tents. This was a result, we were told, of the “code enforcement office clarifying the number of units permitted on this land”. According to Terramor, the discrepancy was as a result of the earlier talks with code enforcement not precisely spelling out that the proposed “lodge” was not residential. Apparently, were the proposal for a residential lodge, code would have allowed 50 units, but given that the proposal is for tents separate from the lodge, code for this site will allow up to 75 tents. It was not apparent to me which code enforcement office this was, but I assume it was the County. (EDIT: It was the Town)
  • Reaction to this announcement was, predictably, one of surprise and anger. Many of the assembled company were alarmed that the deal had changed, and with no notice at all. The Terramor representative stressed that she had only found out about it a few days before and there was regret that such a substantial change had not be communicated earlier. As the questions came thick and fast, she tried to explain that the economics of the proposal were marginal at 50 tents and that 75 tents was more reasonable, given that code allowed it. Reaction to this assertion was skeptical, at best. A rambling discussion followed, touching on many of the familiar and salient areas of neighbourly concern, water, septic, pesticides, traffic, wildlife, etc. Tempers were somewhat frayed at times, with neighbours wondering if Terramor were, indeed, listening to local concerns.
  • The presentation continued with reference to the new sketch plan. Several other changes were noted. Primarily, the relocation of the worker’s dormitory. This was moved away from the previous location near the Cottontail emergency exit and further up the hill. It was suggested that more tents meant more staff and this was acknowledged, vaguely. A description was given of how the extra 25 tents were added to the site. The land planner stressed that the fifty foot distance between tents was still achieved and that the average was slightly higher than that.
  • There were many questions about the distance between the tents nearest the property line up by Raybrook. Discussion ensued about code for the buffer and the planned approach to the issue. It was resolved that the walk would affirmatively include a visit to that area so that we could see for ourselves. The claim was made that the nearest tent to the property line was 85 feet away.
  • The location of the entrance to the site appears to be nearer to the Woodstock side of the site than the last approved project, a decade ago. We were told that this location had been suggested by the Terramor traffic consultants, but that the land planner present was not expert in this area. The reason given for being as close to the Woodstock side as possible is that the project wishes to minimize ground and wetland disturbance. Please see a separate post here for more about the traffic issue: http://southpeaknabe.com/terramor-and-traffic/
  • Terramor acknowledged that they had not met the filing deadline for the June Planning Board meeting and said that they were hoping to file for the July meeting instead. Submission deadline is July 5th for the July 19th meeting
  • Some folks decided to leave and the walk commenced. While the choice may have been made for expediency’s sake (footwear etc.), it was instructive that they did not take us up from the proposed curb cut and over the (extensive) wetlands at the foot of the property. We walked up the significantly drier adjoining property (between the Vet and Terramor) and thence across to the proposed access road.
  • Terrain varied from swampy to firm-ish. “Map-checks” were made along the way, with the land planner indicating the route of the road and other proposed parts of the project. The “Welcome Center” was pointed out and it was again stressed that guests will park in one of several car parks but walk to their tents from there. Tents are generally not accessed directly from the paved through road. Paths to tents will be made of permeable material, including fabric, gravel and other engineered aggregates. Mention was made of the desire site tents so as to cut down a minimum of trees. Tents will be built on wooden platforms. “No, we do not propose concrete footings”.
  • Along the way, different conversations were held and comments made. I did not hear all of them. It was repeatedly stressed that this was all very much a work in progress and that engineering and planning details would change constantly as this difficult land presented new challenges.
  • Septic: Will be dealt with by pumping it from individual tents, likely to a central above-ground facility. This would probably be pumped at the end of the season. “We are still working on this”
  • Well-water: Thinking is that there will be three or four wells. Possibly feeding an above ground tank and distributed to tents via underground piping. Wells appear to be 200 to 300+ feet deep. So far, they propose to use the test wells currently on site. System might be blown out during the winter so that there is no water in it to freeze. Especially since trenches might be shallow enough to be frozen. “We are still working on this”
  • Water run-off: Road will be tilted, with swales at the sides. run-off will likle be fed in to the existing wetlands. There are currently no plans for added ponds. (This means that mosquito suppression via aeration of standing water is not possible. They are not adding standing water to the site and they cannot add aeration to existing wetlands)
  • Electric: to individual tents via trenches.
  • When we arrived at the top end of the site, furthest from Rt. 212 and nearest Raybrook, I volunteered to stand on the exact spot of the tent nearest the property line. The groups was then able to see the geography more plainly. From my vantage point I could see two houses, though not clearly. It was clear that they were there, but features were indistinct at best. I could see marker flags indicating garden beds and, possibly, the property line. Foliage was somewhat dense, given the time of year, but a proper screening hedge will certainly be necessary. A discussion ensued as to how to keep guests from wandering out of the property and into neighbour’s yards. It was apparent that Terramor will have to instruct guests very firmly, carefully, and repeatedly about not going where they should not. It was agreed that at least one tent had to be moved away from the property line.
  • There was some confusion about the Planning Board protocols. The representative of the Town consultants gave a concise explanation of the differences between the Planning Board meetings and the Public Hearing. Basically, the first formal Planning Board meeting allows the project to be presented and starts an ongoing process of information gathering, technical and otherwise, by the Board. This ongoing process also allows for input from the public and any other outside interested parties. Later in the process, the Board may schedule a Public Hearing, at which all are welcome to comment.

    Here are two further short explanations:

    From the consultant who walked around with us:

    Experts are directly hired by the Planning Board to review a project if the Board feels it is necessary. For example, the Board will hire its own traffic engineer to review and comment on the applicant’s traffic report and so forth. The Board relies on these hired experts, and comments from involved agencies such as NYS DEC and DOT, to identify glaring issues, permit requirements, or items that would need to be addressed for an approvable project. The Town Code and NYS Environmental Quality Review Act provides a framework for this investigation.

    The public can also provide comments from their own expert, and present those comments during public hearings.

    Formal meetings are the only time that the Planning Board can discuss the project as a quorum without violating NYS Open Meetings Law, so allowing the technical review to proceed month by month at these meetings is important to the Board’s decision making process.

    From the Planning board Secretary:

    The Planning Board’s procedure is to allow anyone to speak from the public with concerns/comments only at the meeting in which a public hearing is open. If the Planning Board has an expert that they have hired for review/advice then they may invite that person/persons to speak at a given meeting. Anyone is welcome to send in a letter addressing their concerns at any time during the process for the Planning Board to review and take into consideration. The first meeting is generally to familiarize the Planning Board with the project and let the Town Planner and Planning Board members address initial concerns or suggestions. A public hearing will only be scheduled when the site plan is complete enough, which is determined by the Planning Board with the Town Planner’s guidance. A public hearing can be kept open, with the Planning Board’s approval, if concerns are raised by the public that need to be addressed with an updated site plan or additional information.

  • As the walk wound down and we arrived back at the Vet’s, the Terramor representative suggested that there be more informal meetings. Probably in the time after their formal submission to the Board and before their formal appearance. At the moment, they hope to meet the July 5th submission deadline for the July 19th meeting.

Comments are open and tightly moderated.

Note: I have certainly forgotten some parts of the afternoon and some specifics. Your input is appreciated. You can comment publicly, or contact me with corrections and additions

Terramor and traffic


June 09 2022

An email arrived this morning:

[snip]Will an updated traffic study be performed by any of the government agencies on the proposed Terramor project?
Is it advisable for residents [snip] to obtain an updated traffic study, such as the one proposed by [redacted]?

Mark’s response to the above question (lightly edited for context):
Here is a question I posed to the Town planning consultant who was with us on Tuesday (I also asked the same question of the Planning Board Secretary) :

When a new large development (in this case Terramor) has its first appearance in front of the Planning Board, does any other entity have the opportunity to address the Board at that first formal meeting? Not individual members of the public, but, say, an interested expert addressing particular parts of the formal technical submissions made to the Board

The consultant’s response to Mark’s question:

Experts are directly hired by the Planning Board to review a project if the Board feels it is necessary. For example, the Board will hire its own traffic engineer to review and comment on the applicant’s traffic report and so forth. The Board relies on these hired experts, and comments from involved agencies such as NYS DEC and DOT, to identify glaring issues, permit requirements, or items that would need to be addressed for an approvable project. The Town Code and NYS Environmental Quality Review Act provides a framework for this investigation.

The public can also provide comments from their own expert, and present those comments during public hearings.

Formal meetings are the only time that the Planning Board can discuss the project as a quorum without violating NYS Open Meetings Law, so allowing the technical review to proceed month by month at these meetings is important to the Board’s decision making process.

The Planning Board Secretary’s response to Mark’s question:

The Planning Board’s procedure is to allow anyone to speak from the public with concerns/comments only at the meeting in which a public hearing is open. If the Planning Board has an expert that they have hired for review/advice then they may invite that person/persons to speak at a given meeting. Anyone is welcome to send in a letter addressing their concerns at any time during the process for the Planning Board to review and take into consideration. The first meeting is generally to familiarize the Planning Board with the project and let the Town Planner and Planning Board members address initial concerns or suggestions. A public hearing will only be scheduled when the site plan is complete enough, which is determined by the Planning Board with the Town Planner’s guidance. A public hearing can be kept open, with the Planning Board’s approval, if concerns are raised by the public that need to be addressed with an updated site plan or additional information.

My conclusion, therefore, is that both things can be true. Private consultants *can* be hired, but the Board can also do this.

It is highly likely that if citizens tell the Board, early and often, that traffic is a concern, the Board will add that to the list of issues they want their own consultants to address.

[When it comes to traffic,] I think that there are two areas of concern here. One appears to have taken up more oxygen and the other has already been identified by the Town consultants.

First, the Rt. 212/Glasco intersection: While we all know that the Glasco/212 intersection poses concerns, efforts to take up more time and oxygen with this here are likely wasted. I do not think that we can easily link it directly to the Terramor project. It is simply too far away.

Second: the issue of the speed limit on Rt. 212 outside the proposed project entrance and the sight distances thereof. It is this issue which has already been identified by the Town consultants as an area of concern with the preliminary sketch plan. The distance from their proposed curb cut to the turn on the Woodstock side is **just** to code for a 55 mph speed zone. This will continue to be a concern and mitigation for this will be tricky. The Board will be well aware of this. This is definitely something we can and should link to the project.

It’s important to note, of course, that Rt. 212 is a state road and that the Town (and the Planning Board) has limited authority over the infrastructure and protocols on that road. Indeed, when the drainage improvements were made to Osnas, the Town Highway Dept. and their engineers were at pains to point out that the new point of failure will be the culvert under Rt. 212. There was absolutely no appetite on the part of anyone involved for discussions with the State DOT about them improving their own culvert.

I believe the most we can hope for with regard to the intersection issue is that the Planning Board will communicate our concerns about it to the State and make it part of the litany of complaints and issues contained in any proposal the Town makes to the State about Rt 212.

As to the issue of the sight distance, the Board might make them move their curb cut closer to Saugerties. They could also make the curb cut set back further and drastically cut back the foliage on either side to improve sight lines. The consultants have already suggested the latter. They have also suggested that the Town ask the State to make the speed limit 45 (likely from the Transfer Station all the way to Glasco). Of course, this runs into the issue mentioned above about the appetite for any discussions with the State.

— ends —

Comments are open and tightly moderated

KOA/Terramor schedules next neighbor meeting and site walk for June 7 2022

Terramor-Catskills-Neighbor-Invite-June-07-2022-page-001

Terramor-Catskills-Neighbor-Invite-June-07-2022-page-001
Terramor-Catskills-Neighbor-Invite-June-07-2022-page-001

Terramor-Catskills-Neighbor-Invite-June-07-2022-page-002
Terramor-Catskills-Neighbor-Invite-June-07-2022-page-002

From the invite email:

Based off of continued studies and our meeting in March, we are excited to, once again, invite you to see our updated site plan. You should be receiving the attached postcard in the mail in the next few days, but I also wanted to reach out via email to ensure you have more time to save the date.

This next meeting will take place on property, and after we showcase our site design, we will welcome anyone who is interested to stay and walk the property with our team. Please be sure to wear hiking shoes and dress appropriately or in layers.
WHEN: June 7, 5:30pm
WHERE: Meet in front of South Peak Veterinary Clinic

After we asked for some clarifying details we were told “We will have a large site map printed out for the meeting that will call to attention changes. Not a ton of major changes, other than we moved the employee housing and maintenance area further back, away from Cottontail and adjusted the location of the Lodge and pool slightly.”

They also said that they are still shooting for the June 21st Saugerties Planning Board meeting. With regard to that meeting, it would be a good idea for all interested parties to tell the Town that we want the meeting to be in person. The recent meetings, including the May Planning Board meeting have been held over WebEx. This will prove very difficult with the amount of interest which will be generated by the Terramor project. In fact, we asked twice to be given the WebEx details for the May and details were not forthcoming because we did not have business in before the Board. Below are the emails of people who may be able to change the meeting from virtual to hybrid virtual/in person. We suggest an email to each person (or use BCC)

Fred Costello (Town Supervisor) fcostello@saugertiesny.gov
C. Howard Post (chowardpost@gmail.com) Chairperson
Carole Furman (octagon@hvc.rr.com) Vice Chair
Kevin Brady (kbrady@cerestechnologies.com)
Ken Goldberg (K2535@aol.com)
Michael Tiano (mmt92080@gmail.com)
Len Bouren (labouren@hotmail.com)
Robert Hlavaty (robertahlavaty@gmail.com)
William Creen (willcreen@yahoo.com)
Becky Bertorelli (BBertorelli@saugertiesny.gov) Recording Secretary

Here are the emails formatted for your BCC field using commas as separator:
fcostello@saugertiesny.gov, chowardpost@gmail.com, octagon@hvc.rr.com, kbrady@cerestechnologies.com, K2535@aol.com, mmt92080@gmail.com, labouren@hotmail.com, robertahlavaty@gmail.com, willcreen@yahoo.com, BBertorelli@saugertiesny.gov

Here are the emails formatted for your BCC field using semi-colons as separator:
fcostello@saugertiesny.gov; chowardpost@gmail.com; octagon@hvc.rr.com; kbrady@cerestechnologies.com; K2535@aol.com; mmt92080@gmail.com; labouren@hotmail.com; robertahlavaty@gmail.com; willcreen@yahoo.com; BBertorelli@saugertiesny.gov

Daily Freeman reports on Terramor (and more)

Daily Freeman  April 4

On April 2, 2022 the Daily Freeman newspaper of Kingston, NY published a piece titled “Two high end camping resorts in works in Saugerties”. The article was written by Brian Hubert. Here is a link to the page:

https://www.dailyfreeman.com/2022/04/02/saugerties-could-see-two-new-high-end-camping-resorts-by-2024/

In case the article goes behind a paywall or is otherwise inaccessible, here is the text of the article as presented at 11:36am Eastern on Monday April 4, 2022. You can find a screenshot below the article. [EDIT We have inserted an edit to reflect the new number of tents applied for]

By Brian Hubert | bhubert@freemanonline.com | Daily Freeman
PUBLISHED: April 2, 2022 at 3:06 p.m. | UPDATED: April 2, 2022 at 3:52 p.m.

SAUGERTIES, N.Y. — State Route 212 is turning into a corridor of sorts for high-end camping, or “glamping,” with one resort set to open this year in Centerville and another proposed to open closer to Woodstock in 2024.

Autocamp Catskills plans to open later this year on the site of a former KOA Kampgrounds of America location on state Route 212 in Centerville. Autocamp Catskills offers a range of accommodations ranging from “luxury tents” and Airstream trailers and cabins to its “X-suites” with amenities more akin to a regular hotel suite. The suites will feature a private bathroom, a bedroom featuring a queen bed, a kitchen and living area with a flat-screen television and sofa with a fold-out bed.

“This is your basecamp for your next adventure,” the resort’s website said.

“Catskills marks our second East Coast property and we felt this vibrant, explorable region would be a perfect location for AutoCamp,” Neil Dipaola, CEO and founder of AutoCamp, said in a September 2021 press release announcing the resort. “We’re just a short drive up the Hudson from New York City and at the portal of hundreds of miles of hiking trails.

“We’re looking forward to sharing the AutoCamp experience with the outdoor community here,” the release added.

Like AutoCamp’s other properties in Cape Cod and in California, the Saugerties location will have a clubhouse, the release said. Inspired by Hudson Valley farms with a modern structure featuring traditional post-and-beam construction, it will feature a reception area, indoor fire pit, a lounge, and a general store as well as morning breakfast and coffee service, Autocamp said.

AutoCamp Catskills said it will offer guests regularly scheduled yoga and guided meditation classes, movie nights, fireside chats, and live acoustic music, adding it will also have a pool and hot tub.

Terramor Resorts is proposing a glamping resort off of Route 212 near the intersection of Glasco Turnpike that could open as soon as 2024. A subdivision featuring nearly two dozen homes was once approved there back in the 2000s. That project collapsed amid the 2008 Financial Crisis.

Jenny McCullough, Terramor’s director of brand and operations, confirmed the glamping resort operator is applying for a special-use permit with the town of Saugerties that would allow for 50 luxury canvas tents [EDIT from SouthPeakNabe: This application was later expanded to 75 tents] sleeping two to five people that sit on a platform off the ground. Terramore, a division of KOA Kampgrounds of America, currently operates one other location in Bar Harbor, Maine.

The tents, which will rent from $300 to $500 a night, feature in-suite bathrooms, walk-in showers, and king beds, she said. A heater and fan and insulated walls help keep air flowing, she added. Absent are the rustic cabins, RV campsites and even train cabooses found at KOA locations.

Pour-over coffee from local coffee roasters, blankets and other standard amenities will make for a comfortable stay for guests, she said.

The largest permanent structure, still in design phases, will house a front desk, check-in, and a small gift shop stocked with locally made souvenirs, she said. A small guests-only restaurant and bar will be open only in the evenings.

Outfitters, a gear lending station, will lend out gear like hiking poles for guests to hit the many nearby trails or even take out a canoe, according to McCullough.

The site will also have employee housing for its mostly seasonal workforce of about 50 people. “We’re looking to house anywhere between 60 percent to 80 percent of our employees,” she said. Only a property manager and food manager will be on staff year-round, McCullough added.

Terramor anticipates operating anywhere from seven to nine months a year, perhaps from mid-April or the start of May to the end of October, she said.

McCullough said Terramor is not a replacement for a now-shuttered KOA location at the site of the present-day Autocamp resort. This was a franchised location that closed before the Terramor concept was conceived, she said.

Terramor opened at a former KOA in Bar Harbor, Maine, in 2020 with both the 2020 and 2021 seasons proving to be successful, she said. Terramor plans to open more locations in the future.

She said the ratio of guests at Bar Harbor so far has been about 60 percent families and 40 percent couples with the opposite ratio during the shoulder seasons. About 20 percent of these guests bring dogs, she said.

Most of the guests came from across New England, Boston and as far as New York City and New Jersey, key markets Terramor hopes to tap with the Saugerties location, she said. Many guests are not necessarily campers and are seeking soft adventures like days outside exploring the area and participating in cultural events before returning by 4 p.m. to 5 p.m., she said.

McCullough said they looked at several other areas around the Mid-Hudson Valley before settling on this site. “The location is close to attractions and the land itself has unique landscape features like beautiful old rock walls we plan to keep on the property,” she said.

The proposal has drawn the attention of, if not outright opposition of neighbors like Mark Pisani, who runs the South Peak Nabe WhatsApp group and whose property adjoins the proposed Terramor site. He said whileTerramor would be less-intensive than the never-built subdivision, neighbors he’s talked to still have concerns about the wells Terramor would need to sink, septic issues, and water runoff from newly paved roads within the site in an area with a high water table.

“The drainage is a big issue,” he said.

McCullough said Terramor is in communication with neighbors, including at a recent meeting where the business introduced itself and displayed a preliminary site plan.

“It was a very pretty presentation,” Pisani said. “We still have a long way to go in the planning process.”

More sessions are planned, McCullough said, adding that Terramor is working with wastewater engineers to finalize a septic plan.

Terramor is committed to being a good neighbor and not disrupting their ways of life, she said.

“We want to promote providing experiences in nature, not building tents in backyards,” McCullough said.

— ends —

Daily Freeman Screenshot 2022-04-04 at 11:34 Two high end camping resorts in works in Saugerties
Daily Freeman Screenshot 2022-04-04 at 11:34 “Two high end camping resorts in works in Saugerties”

WhatsApp Group added


In an effort to expand ways to stay informed, we have added a WhatsApp Group. You can join it here. There is also a link in the sidebar of the site.

This should be a low volume, tightly moderated group, mainly focused on distributing news about the development, including formal submissions to the Town, public meetings, FOIA results and the like. There will also be links to the posts on this site. While we welcome discussions about the nature and fact of the Terramor development, off-topic discussions, ramblings, etc. are particularly discouraged.

Please get in touch if you need help signing up to the Whatsapp Group.

KOA/Terramor have made their first formal application to Saugerties Planning Board – Public file documents within

Edit: the title of this post should probably read “KOA/Terramor have made their first formal APPROACH to Saugerties Planning Board – Public file documents within”. Application may be too formal of a word in this particular context.

On March 15th 2022 KOA/Terramor made their first formal appearance in front of the Saugerties Planning Board. As of this writing (Friday March 25th 2022), draft minutes of the meeting were not yet available. Prior to the meeting, Terramor submitted initial documents about the proposed glamping operation in West Saugerties / Shultis Corners to the Board. These documents included:

    General Site Plan Application
    Cover letter
    Short EAF which includes:
          Preliminary Traffic Assessment
          Ground Water Sampling Results
          Letter from SHPO
    Existing Conditions and Sketch Plan
    Boundary Survey prepared
    Project Narrative
    Character photos, Bar Harbor, Maine Facility

In addition to the above items from the developer, the public file also includes a 5 page memo from the Planning Board consultants and the Boards own declaration of lead agency.

The most interest part of the whole public file is the memo from the consultants (pictured below). It includes many notes about issues raised by the project and the application. It also takes care to draw attention to a few shortcomings of the initial submission and mentions missing or yet to be submitted articles.

Below you will find photos of many (but not all) items in the Public file as of noon Friday March 25th 2022. Click each thumbnail to see a larger version of the item. You can also download a zip file of all pictures at this link.

Pictures of the Consultants Memo to the Planning Board. Click each picture for larger version.

Terramor Memo from Consultants to planning board Page 1 of 5
Terramor Memo from Consultants to planning board Page 1 of 5

Terramor Memo from consultants to planning board Page 2 of 5
Terramor Memo from consultants to planning board Page 2 of 5

Terramor Memo from consultants to planning board Page 3 of 5
Terramor Memo from consultants to planning board Page 3 of 5

Terramor Memo from consultants to planning board Page 4 of 5
Terramor Memo from consultants to planning board Page 4 of 5

Terramor Memo from consultants to planning board Page 5 of 5
Terramor Memo from consultants to planning board Page 5 of 5

Pictures of the application cover letter from developers. Click each picture for larger version.

Terramor application cover letter page 1 of 2
Terramor application cover letter page 1 of 2

Terramor application cover letter page 2 of 2
Terramor application cover letter page 2 of 2

Pictures of the general site plan application from developers. Click each picture for larger version.

Terramor general site plan application page 1 of 2
Terramor general site plan application page 1 of 2

Terramor general site plan application page 2 of 2
Terramor general site plan application page 2 of 2

Pictures of the project description from developers. Click each picture for larger version.

Terramor Project description page 1 of 2
Terramor Project description page 1 of 2

Terramor Project description page 2 of 2
Terramor Project description page 2 of 2

Picture of the project site plan. Click picture for larger version.

Terramor Project full site plan map
Terramor Project full site plan map

Pictures of the traffic study from developers’ traffic consultants. Click each picture for larger version.

Terramor traffic analysis page 1 of 5
Terramor traffic analysis page 1 of 5

Terramor traffic analysis page 2 of 5
Terramor traffic analysis page 2 of 5

Terramor traffic analysis page 3 of 5
Terramor traffic analysis page 3 of 5

Terramor traffic analysis page 4 of 5
Terramor traffic analysis page 4 of 5

Terramor traffic analysis page 5 of 5
Terramor traffic analysis page 5 of 5

Pictures of notes from earlier workshop meetings. Click each picture for larger version.

Terramor first workshop notes 03 24 2021
Terramor first workshop notes 03 24 2021

Terramor second workshop notes 06 23 2021
Terramor second workshop notes 06 23 2021

Terramor third workshop notes 09 29 2021
Terramor third workshop notes 09 29 2021

Any interested party can view all of these documents and more at the Town of Saugerties Planning Board office. Please email Becky Bertorelli, Planning Board Secretary (bbertorelli@saugertiesny.gov) and ask for an appointment. Ask for the “Terramor Catskill file”


March 18 2022 – KOA/Terramor set date for informal “get-to-know-us” gathering 6pm March 29th in Woodstock

Terramor March 29 event invite
Terramor March 29 event invite

Immediate neighbours of the proposed development have received an invite from KOA/Terramore.
They have asked that we publicize it widely.
Here are the contents of the invitation:

Meet Terramor
Tuesday, March 29 at 6:00pm
Cucina. 109 Mill Hill Road, Woodstock

Join us to learn more about Terramor Outdoor Resort. Chat with our team, view a preliminary site design, enjoy delicious refreshments, and get to know your new neighbor.

Please RSVP and send preliminary questions to communityrelations@terramoroutdoorresort.com

Not available to attend in person? Please email us for a live digital link

Please let your friends and neighbours know about this date and plan to come along if you can.

It’s important to note that this an informal “get-to-know-you” at which the developer will doing their best to put their best foot forward. This will be very different from the formal Public Meeting of the Saugerties Planning Board, which will come later.


Once again, we stress that this website, SouthPeakNabe.com, has no association with either KOA or Terramor or the Saugerties Planning Board. It is merely an informational website attempting to keep neighbours and other interested parties up to date on developments in and around the South Peak area of West Saugerties / Shultis Corners.

January 7 2022 – KOA has officially acquired the land

According to records at the Ulster County Clerk, KOA has now completed transfer of the deed to the land in question. The price was $950,000.
Here are some very rough screen grabs of the deed transfer document. Click on each for a slightly larger version. You can find better resolutions by making your own search on the Ulster County Clerk’s Land Records IQS page (https://www.searchiqs.com/NYULS/SearchAdvancedMP.aspx) and using the search term “Saugerties Developers LLC”

Terramor deed transfer
Terramor deed transfer
Terramor deed transfer




Terramor deed transfer

November 23, 2021 – Introductory Letter from KOA/Terramor

Immediate neighbours (we assume those who have property contiguous with the South Peak properties) have received a letter, dated November 15th, from Jenny McCullough, Director of Marketing & Brand Experience, Terramor Outdoor Resort. The letter was drafted November 8th and was adjusted after some written and spoken input from at least one neighbour.

Below is the text of the letter. You can also download the .pdf here: http://southpeaknabe.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/11/Teramor-Saugerties-Introductory-Letter-final-as-sent-11-15-2021.pdf

This site solicits your comments and reactions. Please also send suggestions for follow-up questions for KOA/Terramor. If you send a question to KOA yourself, please tell us about it and tell us about any response you get. Information sharing and transparency will help everyone in the long run. Site admin for SouthPeakNabe.com can be reached at: mark@southpeaknabe.com
OR
845 418 6947 (wait for screening message)

Once again, we stress that this website, SouthPeakNabe.com, has no association with either KOA or Terramor or the Saugerties Planning Board. It is merely an informational website attempting to keep neighbours and other interested parties up to date on developments in and around the South Peak area of West Saugerties.

——————–

Full text of letter sent to neighbours:


November 15, 2021
Sent On Behalf of Terramor Outdoor Resort
An entity of Kampgrounds of America, Inc.
Jenny McCullough

Dear Neighbor,
We want to take this opportunity to introduce ourselves to you and help answer any questions or concerns you may have while we are in the process of purchasing the 75.12 acre of land located within your neighborhood on Route 212.

We are Kampgrounds of America, Inc., known mainly as KOA. Historically, KOA is the largest camping brand in the world, with over 500 campgrounds across North America. While our KOA campgrounds service RVers, tent campers, motorhomes and more, the intent for this property is to expand our new venture focused on introducing individuals to the great outdoors in an elevated and comfortable way.

In 2020, KOA launched a new brand called Terramor Outdoor Resorts in Bar Harbor, Maine. Terramor, which means “love of land,” is a new concept with custom made canvas and hard-sided tent accommodations. Our Terramor properties include:
* Central Lodge with a small kitchen, concierge desk and check-in
* Heated outdoor pool and hot tub
* Communal pavilion for onsite activities
* Nature trails throughout the property
* Designated parking areas, encouraging our guests to walk to their accommodations and around our campus
* Canvas and hard-sided tents, located a minimum of 50-feet form one another
* Privacy and noise-scaping to help prevent noise both on and offsite

We take our ‘love of land’ name seriously. Our properties are designed to have limited impacts on the land; utilizing one or two central septic systems, creating unpaved roadways, participating in recycling programs and more. All of our tents are built on elevated platforms to minimize destruction to the land and are pushed back into the forests to provide privacy. In our flagship location, we replanted over 1,000 trees to the property and worked with the Acadia National Park’s landscape architect to use local flora and fauna and rebuild the natural ecosystem for our guests to enjoy.

The property in reference is zoned for a campground with up to 50 sites. While we do not close on the property until late December, we anticipate this site to have 50 tent accommodations. Our design plan is to build the luxury campground off of Route 212, tucked into the acreage so it would not be visible from the road. While we will have an access road on Cottontail, this road would not be a main entrance and serve more for emergency vehicles. Terramor Catskills would operate on a seasonal basis for 7-9 months a year.

We are committed to being a high integrity, respectful and quiet neighbor. We institute a strict quiet hours policy at our property to ensure our guests get to experience the sounds of nature. Terramor’s brand exemplifies both the love of land and love of locale, which means we work hard to be a strong community partner. We work to source much of our food and beverage locally, sell locally made products and gifts in our store, promote local businesses, guides and tour operators and help educate guests on the importance of outdoor conservation.

We are currently working with the city and county to ensure required and recommended studies, procedures and licensing is taking place. In the meantime, please take a moment to get to know us a bit more by visiting our website, www.terramoroutdoorresort.com.
If you have any further questions, you are welcome to send me an email at communityrelations@terramoroutdoorresort.com. We look forward to becoming a member of your community!

Sincerely,

Jenny McCullough
Director of Marketing & Brand Experience
Terramor Outdoor Resort
406.670.7511
— ends —

——————–

November 04, 2021 – Very short update

A busy couple of days. A few updates:

  • Neighbors from the Raybrook development have been in touch. They also raise concerns and will be part of the process.
  • KOA/Terramor confirm that they have not formally acquired the land.
  • Because of that, they cancelled/postponed the preliminary and informational Zoom call they had scheduled. I wrote them and expressed disappointment. There may be informal follow-up there.
  • Saugerties Planning Board confirms once again that there is no formal application or any other paperwork in front of the Board.
  • Still working on questions to be raised with developers and Board. Please advise your own.

South Peak – A Different Tack – First Activity in Years – November 2021

KOA Terramor South Peak Saugerties Proposal

KOA Terramor South Peak Saugerties Proposal

November 01, 2021

Neighbors of the South Peak Saugerties property may have noticed activity on the hill over the  last few weeks. This is the result of a early-stage proposal for new development on the property.

While there has been no formal application to the Town, and it is very early in the process, we do know a few details:

  1. The “Terramor” division of KOA is exploring siting a glamping operation on the site.
  2. Surveyors have spent at least three days on the site. They were re-surveying the site to see if anything had changed since the last survey undertaken in 2003/2005. This is often a due-diligence requirement before properties formally change hands.
  3. The well drilling folks  were on the property to clear paths to the old test wells on the property. We do not know if any testing has yet taken place.
  4. As far as we can tell, the Ulster County Clerk has not yet recorded a formal sale of the two lots. They appear to still be in the hands of the most recent owners of record.
  5. While there has been no formal proposal to the Town, the KOA people have attended at least one informal Planning Board workshop. This is usually an informal opportunity for developers to understand the Town’s planning process and to ask the Board preliminary questions about the proposal/approval workflow.
  6. An initial outreach to the KOA folks yielded a relatively positive response, including an invitation to join the Director of Acquisitions and the Marketing Director at KOA/Terramore for a Zoom call with members of the Planning Board.

We are formulating a series of questions for the new developers and the Planning Board. Not surprisingly, these revolve around the same concerns expressed years ago when the proposed sub-division was under discussion and achieved conditional final approval.

It’s important to note that this is a very different proposal (“special use” vs. “subdivision”) and so some efforts required of the developers will be different. Additionally, some very particular facts about the immediate neighbourhood have changed and these changes affect certain parts of the Planning Board’s considerations.

Site admin for SouthPeakNabe.com can be reached at:
mark@southpeaknabe.com
OR
845 418 6947 (wait for screening message)

We welcome any constructive input and, especially, questions and concerns which can be raised with the developers and Planning Board.

It should go without saying that this website, SouthPeakNabe.com, has no association with either KOA or Terramor  or the Saugerties Planning Board. It is merely an informational website attempting to keep neighbours and other interested parties up to date on developments in and around  the South Peak area of West Saugerties.