The property on which the resort is proposed is in Rosendale Zone A, which is designated for "Residential and Open Space uses". Several aspects of the HRVR project are either in conflict with that designation or require special consideration (A Special Use Permit, from the Planning Board) in order to be included within such a zone. Other aspects of the project are not permitted at all and would require a zoning Variance from the Zoning Board of Appeals.
Each use, as described by the developer, is represented by a Standard Industrial Classification code, as interpeted by this author. The zoning law refers to these codes when describing the various permitted uses.
|Use (SIC code)||Status in Zone A||Notes|
|Detached Single-family home (0011)||Permitted.|
|Attached Single-family home (0013)||Not permitted. Use Variance required. Area Variance probably required due to building spacing.||The code does not distinguish 'Detached' and 'Attached' single family homes. The later would seem to come under a 'Multifamily dwelling'. Also note that the code requires 1.5 acre for a single-family dwelling, with yard area on all sides.|
|Resort Hotel (7011)||Requires Special Use Permit.|
|Five-story hotel building||Area variance required.|
|Spa (72)||Not permitted. Use Variance required. *|
|Wellness center (72 or 80)||"Personal services" and "Health services" are not permitted. Use Variance required. *||The function of this facility is unclear in the HRVR plan.|
|Fitness center (72 or 80)||"Personal services" and "Health services" are not permitted. Use Variance required. *|
|Outdoor recreation center ("Amusement and recreation services other than...")||Not permitted. *|
|Interpretive center (84)||Requires Special Use Permit. *|
|Organic garden (01)||Permitted|
|Restaurant (5812)||Requires Special Use Permit. *|
|Gift shop (5947)||Requires Special Use Permit. *|
|Waste Treatment plant (49)||Requires Special Use Permit. *|
|Public forest preserve lands (0099)||Permitted.||HRVR has not committed to free public access, except along a relocated 'rail trail'.|
The Williams Lake Hotel was not in compliance with several Zone A requirements, however it began operation prior to the implementation of zoning in the town and was therefore permitted to continue. No Special Use Permits were obtained to allow this operation. The hotel and all of its operations (Beach Club, etc.) have been closed for over a year, so any resumption of these activities would require compliance with the current zoning law.
To obtain a Use Variance, HRVR would have to demonstrate "unnecessary hardship", which would be difficult as the zoning law was in place and known to them when they purchased the property.
* - HRVR asserts that these items are Accessory Uses to the hotel and therefore do not require additional permitting. The zoning code defines an Accessory Use as "A use customarily incidental and subordinate to the principal use or building and located on the same lot with such principal use or building." Buildings erected for accessory use are currently limited to 500 square feet in floor area (§75-18(E)(2)(c)). All of the proposed accessory buildings exceed this size.
Instead of designing a development which adhered to the existing Residence A zoning code, HRVR chose to propose changing the zoning law itself. The developer proposed, and the Town modified and approved on 2 Oct 2013 an amendment targeted specifically at the project site. This amendment effectively permits all of the uses listed above without the need for further zoning approvals.
Last updated 5 Oct 2013.