Web based journal created to document environmental and architectural conditions in Scarsdale. Read articles Scarsdale10583.com or the local newspaper The Scarsdale Inquirer will not publish! Come to Scarsdale New York, see what a beautiful town this is. Now, we need your help. Funds or time, whatever you can, whenever you can will be appreciated. See the PayPal icon below or email me at Lika@Save-Scarsdale.org. Thank you.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

The F.A.R rules and Scarsdale10583

Dear Readers,

I received this on Monday, from Joanne W. from Scarsdale10583 site:

On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 8:14 AM, Joanne Wallenstein <scarsdalecomments@gmail.com>wrote:

Hi Lika: we are writing an article on Scarsdale10583 about the FAR requirements. We were hoping you would give us a quote about the current FAR code --
Do you think it should be revised, and if so, how? Do you believe that home sizes are exceeding lot capacity?

Thank you,
Joanne and Jonathan Greenberg

Joanne Wallenstein

and I sent this, which is replicated  in part and with some corrections:


I am sure you know my feelings about this. I feel I have been repeating my self ad infinitum to be soon accused of having an advanced case of Alzheimer's.

Nonetheless thank you for asking.

Just drive to One Rectory Lane ( corner of Church and Rectory, 6,800 sq.ft according to the worker there with six bedrooms, seven bathrooms, )  and see what is going on there and take some pictures. I have pictures on my web page  ( http://www.save-scarsdale.org/2013/05/todays-pictures-oak-way-all-way-at-end.html ) as it was earlier and even then it looked huge. 

As we just spoke on the phone there is also North Chase Road going up now (http://www.save-scarsdale.org/2013/05/todays-pictures-stonehouse-road-better.html ) , plus the two homes on the latest BAR agenda on Rock Creek Lane. Per Farley Baker these are 6,000 sq.ft. homes on .2 acres each. Farley Baker asked them to go back and come back with reduced sizes after neighbor after neighbor complained at last week's meeting.

Huge, bulky homes and very little space left for a garden, all pervious surfaces taken up by impervious ones. That includes pathways, garages, pools, tennis courts, - any structure that suffocates the soil and all that live underneath...We are loosing our character as a Village-in-a-Park and becoming a Village-of-Monstrosities...

When 11 School Lane went up in 2001, it was so huge in such a small lot that, it gave rise to the F.A.R study....But, the FAR was a joke from the start. I knew it when 10 Autenrieth went up in 2007, but they did not want to look at it. There was too much demand for bigger and bigger homes and the Village was hungry for more tax revenue. 

Mr. Gatta himself unfortunately is no advocate for conservation, and at the latest BAR meeting with the VB , he said " Thank God (homes) Colonial Acres is gone "... and now replaced with celluloid replicas of his taste, I suppose bringing in more tax revenue... We now have ugly homes and roads with endless pot holes. What happened to the additional tax revenue ?... 

Big, uncharacteristic, thoughtless, model homes developed hastily on spec., creating a feeling of emptiness where there used to be neighborhood character, history, value, taste. Sorry, I do not agree with Mr. Gatta here. 

The FAR needs to be revised so that it does not allow for big structures any more. The impervious surfaces it requires has to be increased three, four times. The bulk it allows has to be reduced three, four times. The height, width it allows similarly....

There was never a calculation for bulk, volume of air displaced by the house. This has to be accounted for. The volume displaced cannot be more than the original structure there, ideally even less. 

We have to stop building ( impacting negatively our environment )  and try to mitigate the damage we have caused on our own natural environment. We have to add to the inventory of empty space, we have to start to demolish and give back to nature, give back to the wildlife their habitat we have so hastily and unjustly confiscated. If not extinct, nature has the ability to heal itself and will come back. But, we have to allow for this to happen, before it is too late.

Gone are the days of build and build. We have become the psychotic writing his or her death sentence. This much building is self-destructive. 

Anyone can tell you this is not healthy behavior and has to be stopped as soon as possible, preferably via a moratorium until satisfactory laws are put in place. I have been issuing warning signals ( e-mails ) since 2007 !

That is why I started my petition for UNESCO World Heritage site that would solve the architectural integrity and environmental conservation issues with one blow, since it would freeze our Village in time and preserve all. It would become a historic landmark, a place where old homes are maintained, cherished, valued forever. Who can replicate a 100 year old home, the way it really was, the way it became, it survived ? 

There is character that cannot be quantified or replicated here that is cherished all over the world and preserved.

Us, as a young country  we have to go to great lengths to preserve and conserve our heritage, the little we have. No, so far we have been doing the exact opposite... Is this right, is this smart ? Or should we change direction, as in quickly, beofre it is all gone, irrevocably, irreparably...

Joanne, I think it would be great to interview our Village Manager, Village Planner and Mayor and make this a full-blown saga and article. You are the professional and I am clearly the amateur, but there is room for all to help here.

On the subject of other issues to be covered: what ever happened to the Committee for Historic Preservation and their law suit, the sale of the house, etc. etc....

Please let me know if any of this is unclear or needs further elaboration.

Thank you so much for addressing this and informing the public !


Lika L. Levi

Founder, Save Scarsdale (a non-profit in formation)
21 Lockwood Road
Scarsdale, NY 10583-5301

Office: (914) 722-0004

No comments:

Post a Comment