Jul 01, 2014 Russ Tarby Uncategorized
At its June 16 meeting, the Liverpool Village Board of Trustees approved two measures designed to encourage development on the basin block bounded by First and South Willow streets and Lake Drive.
They passed a local law allowing site review applicants — who must demonstrate that enough nearby parking exists to accommodate customers — to count parking spaces located on-street and/or in municipal parking lots within 500 feet of the site. The new law, Local Law C, allows site-plan applicants to count up to 50 percent of their required parking that way.
Then the trustees unanimously approved a related inter-municipal agreement with Onondaga County allowing village businesses to utilize two parking lots owned by County Parks and Recreation at Onondaga Lake Park. Site-plan applicants will be able to count parking spaces available there.
The agreement, which was unanimously OKed by the County Legislature on June 3, made available parking lots at the Griffin Visitor Center and the Salt Museum.
At a brief public hearing conducted by the Liverpool trustees on June 16, Wendy Marsh, an attorney representing Liverpool restaurateur John Gormel who owns the Barking Gull, said that the lack of lighting and sidewalks at the Griffin lot would violate the village’s legal duty to provide “safe and convenient” pedestrian access to and from its municipal parking lots.
Marsh also questioned how long the agreement would remain in place. “What’s going to happen if the agreement is terminated?” she asked. “Applicants should know the agreement could be terminated.”
Village Attorney John Langey anticipates the agreement to be continued “far into the future.” The county, he said, “knows that this will help local businesses and put more sales-tax money in its pocket as a result.”
As to safety, the agreement calls for the village to provide “enhanced police patrol” of the two county lots. Mayor Gary White, a former deputy chief of police in Syracuse, said some lighting may need to be added at the Griffin lot and noted that the Salt Museum lot is already well-lit and has sidewalks.
“There are a lot of projects in the works on the basin block,” White said. He listed a proposed mid-block parking lot to be shared by the White Water Pub and Limp Lizard Barbecue, the recent opening of the Barking Gull, improvements to First Street structures owned by Mike Charles and a major mixed-use development planned by JGB Properties.
At the hearing, Planning Board Chairman Joe Ostuni Jr. thanked the trustees for creating Local Law C and for negotiating the inter-municipal agreement. “This makes it easier for us,” Ostuni said. “It allows us to help our applicants in the future.”
JGB Properties’ proposed mixed-use development on lower First and South Willow streets will benefit from the revamped regulations regarding eligible spaces for required parking. JGB’s development would house 47 residential units and eight commercial spaces. The office and retail spaces would be located along First Street in two buildings also featuring apartments or condominiums, while a third structure on South Willow Street would include 15 residential units.
JGB Properties project director Christine Stevens believes the new parking arrangements will help her to market the retail and office spaces.
Two DWIs in May
Via a memo read by Trustee Jim Rosier, Liverpool Police Chief Don Morris informed village trustees at their June 16 meeting that officers made 137 traffic stops and issued 134 citations for violations of the state’s vehicle and traffic laws during May. In addition, 16 traffic accidents were investigated and two arrests were made for driving while intoxicated.
Officers made 246 residential checks during the month while answering a total of 403 complaints and calls for service.
During May, LPD officers arrested 24 individuals on a total of 33 criminal charges.
Officer Jerry Unger was honored as Liverpool Officer of the Year at a dinner hosted June 13 by the Liverpool Elks Lodge 2348.
The trustees approved the hiring of a new part-time officer. Thomas Bingham, a recent member of the East Syracuse Police Department, will man the midnight shift.