PROSPECT — The Planning and Zoning Commission’s approval of special permits for a new industrial building and the removal of earth materials from the site is being challenged in court.
Earlier this month, the commission approved special permits, with certain conditions, associated with a plan to build a 40,000-square-foot industrial building at 99 Union City Road as well as removing 112,000 cubic yards of earth material from the site in order to properly grade the lot.
The 29.69-acre property is owned by John Gallagher, who owns Industrial Storage, LLC. The plan is to use the site and building for storage, including for large equipment and vehicles.
Attorney Leonard Caine filed complaints and appeals in Waterbury Superior Court on Sept. 10 on behalf of G&G Trust seeking to have the commission’s decisions declared “null and void.” The commission and Industrial Storage were summoned to appear in court on Oct. 2 to answer the complaints, according to the court documents.
G&G Trust owns the neighboring building at 103 Union City Road. Gregory Ploski, one of the owners of the building at 103 Union City Road, is an alternate on the Planning and Zoning Commission. He recused himself during discussions of the special permits.
The complaints claim the commission “acted arbitrarily, illegally, unlawfully and in abuse of the discretion vested in it as an administrative agency” when approving the special permits for multiple reasons including failing to require an “adequate” traffic study be performed; failure to demand compliance with zoning regulations in approving a special permit for a project that doesn’t comply with sightline requirements mandated by the state Department of Transportation; and failure to enforce zoning regulations which limit the amount of material that can be removed from a site that size to 2,000 cubic yards.
The sightlines from the proposed driveway for the industrial building have been a concern with the project since Gallagher submitted a similar application, which he withdrew, last year. Gallagher resubmitted his application with some changes to the site plan in June.
According to the site plan, the sightline looking east from the proposed driveway meets the DOT requirements for passenger cars, single-unit trucks and tractor-trailers for a 45 mph speed limit. The sightline looking west meets the requirements for passenger cars and single-unit trucks but falls short of the required distance for tractor-trailers, according to information on the plan.
The DOT has approved an encroachment permit for the driveway.