ARB Minutes – March 4, 2022

Village of Dering Harbor
Architectural Review Board
Meeting minutes
March 4th, 2022, 10:00 AM (via Zoom) 

  • The meeting was called to order at 10:02am.
  • Attendance: Susannah Rose (chairperson), Mickey Kostow, Bridgford Hunt, George Birman, Stephanie Deutsch, Rob Ferris, Wayne Bruyn (village attorney), Vicki Shields (village clerk), Donna Ritzzmann (Tim Hogue’s stenographer), Mary Walker, Eric Deutsch, Ari Benacerraf, John Colby, Karen Kelsey, Patrick Parcells, Annmarie Seddio, August Huff, Brandon Rose, Julie Farris, Marian Brownlie, Nick Feihal, Ted Nelson
  • A motion to accept the minutes from the February 12th meeting was made bySusannah and seconded by Rob Ferris.
  • Old Business
  • Continuation of Public Hearing – Building Permit Application

Submitted by Yoshimi Kono (property owner)
SCTM# 701 – 1 – 3 – 16.3
Street Address: 3 Dering Woods Lane, Dering Harbor

Building permit application for new construction of dwelling, garage, swimming pool, and tennis court.

A motion to reopen this public hearing was made by Susannah and seconded by Rob Ferris. Stephanie Deutsch officially recused herself for this application and Rob Ferris, as an alternate, sat in for this application.

Kevin Clark (Mr. Kono’s architect) presented the latest version of his client’s plans. The only substantive change was that the roofing material was changed from asphalt to cedar shingle.

Mickey asked about planned landscaping around the pool fence. Mr. Clark said they plan to landscape around the fence so that it visually disappears into the surrounding landscape.

Public comments:

  1. Eric Deutsch commented on the applicant’s choice of siting and recalled the meeting he and neighbors had with the applicant and his attorney to talk about their concerns. He does not think enough information has been provided on this application for the ARB to be able to vote on it. He listed everything he thinks still needs to be provided.
  2. Kimberley Carey shared her continued concerns about the siting, especially of the choice of placement of the tennis court so close to her property..
  3. John Colby shared his background in the village that he used to be a member of the ARB, and commented that he thinks the house is unproportional. He also expressed his concern about the choice of siting. He brought up the concept of a “shadow rule” that the ARB used to apply to applications in the past.
  4. Mary Walker commented that she agrees with everything that has been said and doesn’t think it is asking too much for the applicant to alter the siting.
  5. Ari Benacerraf is concerned about siting and the choice of pool fence.
  6. Karen Kelsey echoed the concerns about the placement and length of the driveway and thinks it can be improved.
  7. Patrick Parcells understands the neighbor’s concerns. He commented that he thinks it’s important to keep context in mind. He thinks the placement of the driveway is a matter of practicality. He also noted that the driveway and tennis court are more than 200’ from neighboring property lines. It’s his opinion that Mr. Kono has property owner rights, just like everyone else, and that he be treated fairly. He understands the difficulty of it and that no matter where a house is sited, it will impact the neighbors.

Public comment period was closed.

Susannah asked Kevin Clark if he wanted to respond to the public comments. He declined and said he would wait to hear from the board.

ARB member comments:

  1. Mickey asked Kevin Clark to pull up the plan to look at the siting again. Mickey asked for a more detailed discussion about dimensions and placement of structures, He was looking for clarification on that. He thinks all the materials presented are acceptable. He is concerned about the choice of fence and knows that any fence like that in the village is landscaped. He knows that is the intent but is concerned what it will actually look like.
  2. Bridgford commented about the choice of the fence and believes that the intent is for it to blend into the landscape and thinks it will do just that. Other than that, he thinks the proposed plan will make a very nice addition to the village.
  3. Rob Ferris suggested that the length of the pool fence be brought down a bit but thinks it is effective and that he has a similar fence on his property. He asked whether there will be a driveway apron installed. Kevin Clark said no, to be in keeping with what the neighbors have. Wayne clarified that it is a code requirement. Rob also echoed Mickey’s comment that he’s not sure what else should be done about siting and thinks that what is proposed will look nice between the two existing homes.
  4. George Birman commended the applicant for switching the roofing material to cedar. He is also concerned about the choice of pool fencing and would like to see it landscaped to ensure that it will truly disappear into the landscape. He reiterated his concerns about siting and that in his opinion, has not been addressed one way or another by the applicant.
  5. Susannah Rose commented that she is also pleased to see that the roof has been changed to cedar. She went on to give some background about how many houses have been built since the inception of the ARB. She applauds the applicant for considering the current temperature of the village regarding choice of roofing. She also would like to see the fence landscaped nicely to be considerate to neighbors. She said she would like to see more details on the choice of materials for the surface of the tennis court, pool lining, flashing, brick on the chimney, etc. She also said that she is conflicted about siting. She suggested to the applicant that they keep this open to give them an opportunity to address the issues that have been raised.
  6. Mickey commented that he doesn’t think that the neighbors have demonstrated how this plan inhibits their enjoyment of their property.

Kevin Clark asked for what specifics the board is looking for. He believes what they have submitted satisfies the requirements and if the board is saying that they have not, then he asked for a specific list from the board on what additionally they need to submit. Susannah listed them: what are the tennis court specifications (material, fencing),what are the pool details (finish), what is the flashing on the house, what are the exterior light fixtures, what is the brick on the chimney, is there a driveway apron and if so, what does it look like.

Susannah made a motion to adjourn for all purposes until the April 9th meeting, seconded by Rob Ferris. Bridgford asked Wayne what would happen if they did not vote in favor. Wayne explained that if they don’t adjourn, they need to take an action: approve, deny, approve with conditions. Bridgford suggested they ask the applicant what they want to do. Kevin Clark and Kimberlea Rea (Mr. Kono’s attorney) asked for a vote with conditional approval. Mickey Kostow said that seemed reasonable to him.  Wayne explained that there is still specific information that the applicant needs to provide the board before they can vote. The decision is final and the conditions have to be finite. Rob Ferris expressed that he is uncomfortable voting on the application at this time and thinks the board should provide Kevin with a list of what they are asking for. Kevin commented that if that is the direction of the board, he will accept it, since it seems that they are close to a decision. Bridgford commented that he is concerned that every time the applicant comes before the board, there is a new item requested. He would like a list to be provided to the applicant that is thorough and final. After a discussion, it was agreed that the applicant can use the recording of the meeting as a means to know what the board is asking for from them

With the motion on the table, there were 3 votes yes (Susannah, Rob, George), and 2 votes no (Bridgford and Mickey). Motion passed.

  • Continuation of Public Hearing – Building Permit Application

Submitted by Annmarie Seddio (property owner)
SCTM# 701 – 1 – 3 – 21.1
Street Address: 2 Dering Woods Road, Dering Harbor

Building permit application for new construction of a 2-story dwelling, garage, and swimming pool.

A motion to reopen this public hearing was made by Susannah and seconded by Rob Ferris. Stephanie Deutsch came back to the meeting and her role on the ARB as a voting member.

August Muff presented the revised plans.

Public comments:

  1. Rob Ferris asked for details about the choice of roofing material. August explained that it is a bituminous asphalt roofing material. GAF Timberline in “Antique Slate”. He also asked about the choice of fencing around the pool, as well as whether they still plan to use the brick veneer for the chimney. August showed pictures of examples.

Public comment period closed.

Comments from the board:

  1. Stephanie asked for clarification on the landscaping around the pool fence. Annmarie said that it would be boxwood inside the fence and privet on the outside. She also asked if there will be a driveway apron. They said yes. That it will be bluestone and belgian block. She went on to explain what she would like applicants to provide in terms of landscaping. She also asked for some clarification on exterior lighting.
  2. Mickey said he appreciates that the applicant listened to the feedback they had received about the size of the garage.
  3. Bridgford echoed Mickey’s sentiment and said he thinks it looks great.
  4. George Birman agreed with Bridgford and Mickey regarding the improvement of the plan. He would prefer the choice of natural material for the roof, but said it is up to the applicant.
  5. Stephanie agrees that this revision is a huge improvement. She said she would like to see additional sconces around the archway and would like to see more details in terms of landscaping around the pool fence. She also commented that she thinks there should be some landscaping around the driveway and parking area. Annmarie said she plans on doing that but did not put much time into it because she did not think it was needed for approval. But she does plan on fully landscaping these areas. She also does not want to look at wire fencing when she is sitting at her pool. She also said she still has an issue with the choice of an asphalt roof and would prefer the applicant choose a natural material, either wood or slate, although she does not love the choice of slate in a seaside community. Annmarie responded with the reasons why she is choosing an asphalt roof.
  6. Susannah asked for a sample of the roofing material. She summarized, once again, the background and the current temperature of the ARB and the community in terms of wood roofs. She is not sure how she feels about the front door. She appreciated the clarification about the fence around the pool

Susannah asked if the applicant would like to adjourn and keep the hearing open. They said yes. The applicant was reminded that since there have been significant changes made to the plan, they need to be reviewed again by the building inspector.

Susannah made a motion to keep the hearing open and adjourn until the April 9th meeting, seconded by George. All Board members voted in favor..

  • Pre-Submission Conference

Applicant- Ted and Debbie Nelson, Property Owners
Street Address: 4 Dering Woods Road
SCTM# 701 – 1 – 3 – 21.2

Request for second pre submission conference for feedback on preliminary plans and ideas for construction of new dwelling on property.

A motion to open this pre submission conference was made by Susannah and seconded by Mickey. All Board members voted in favor.

Nick Feihel, the Nelson’s architect, gave his presentation and explained the revisions he’s made.

Feedback from the public:

  1. Rob Ferris commented that he is very concerned about the double opening to the driveway. He thinks one entrance/exit point is sufficient. Also concerned about the choice of materials for the roof and siding. The architect commented that the colors are no longer black but the specifics have not been decided on.

Feedback from the board:

  1. Bridg Hunt commented that he does not like the shape of the chimney. It does not seem traditional to him.
  2. Stephanie said she thinks this is an improvement and heading in the right direction. The lack of symmetry on the front elevations concerns her and would like to see it more symmetrical. In some ways it looks Victorian, in others it does not, and suggests that it be more consistent. She feels the house is sited at an awkward angle to the street. She agrees with Rob Ferris that two curb cuts is not ideal. Also agrees with Bridgford about the chimney.
  3. George Birman commented that he thinks a lot of improvement has been made to the design. The side and rear elevation generally look good to him. In terms of the front and other side elevation, he agrees with Stephanie about the symmetry. He thinks the balance of the roofline could be improved. He also agrees with Stephanie’s feedback about the Victorian style, as well as previous comments about materials. He appreciates that the applicant is no longer going with the dark trim.
  4. Mickey commented that to him, there are a lot of different architectural styles being represented in the design and that it needs to be more consistent. He thinks it may have to do with the different roof pitches. He had some specific comments about the windows. He thinks overall the architectural expression needs to be more consistent.
  5. Susannha agreed with Mickey and said she’s not quite sure she understands it from an aesthetic point of view. She agrees about the two curb cuts and reminded the applicant that curb cuts need Board of Trustees approval.
  • Next meeting date- April 9th, 2022, in person.
  • A motion to adjourn at 12:02 pm was made bySusannah and seconded by Bridgford. All Board members voted in favor.