ARB Minutes – November 13, 2021

Village of Dering Harbor
Architectural Review Board
November 13th, 2021, 12:00 PM

● Meeting was called to order at 12:02pm
● Attendance- Susannah Rose (chairperson), Stephanie Deustch, George Birman, Bridgford Hunt, absent- Mickey Kostow; Wayne Bruyn (village attorney), Vicki Shields village clerk)s, Donna Ritzzmann (Timothy Hogue’s stenographer), Ted and Debbie Nelson, Nicholas Feihel (architect), Lou Katsos, Ari and Margarita Benacerraf, Eric Deutsch
● Motion to accept the minutes from the October 9th, 2021 meeting was made by Susannah and seconded by Stephanie. All Board members present voted in favor. Review and acceptance of the October 22nd, 2021 Special Meeting minutes was tabled until next meeting.
● New Business

○ Pre-Submission Conference
Applicant- Ted and Debbie Nelson, Property Owners
Street Address: 4 Dering Woods Road
SCTM# 701 – 1 – 3 – 21.2
Request for first pre submission conference for feedback on preliminary plans and ideas for construction of new dwelling on property. Nicholas Feihel (architect) gave his presentation on behalf of the applicants. He explained that was going for cottage/carriage house style with this concept. Most of the lot is planned to be kept wooded. Ted Nelson (landowner and applicant) added that when they bought the property, that they wanted the house to sit on the property and not be overstated. They want to keep as much of the wooded feel as possible. They want it to be in keeping with what is already there.

Public comments:
Lou Katsos from 6 Dering Woods Road said he has no objection to the plan that is being presented but is concerned about the aesthetic not matching what he plans for his property. Susannah recommended that Mr. Katsos look at the code and the Design Principles that were adopted back in April to give him guidance. Public comment period was closed.
Board comments:

Bridgford didn’t have a great deal to say. He commented about the broken peak of the gabled ends of the roof from a personal preference. He doesn’t like the detail but said he wouldn’t opine on it. He also made the suggestion of adding more windows in the second floor bedroom to add more light to the interior. Stephanie started by officially welcoming the Nelson’s to the village. Her feedback was detailed. She agrees with Bridgford’s feedback about the broken gable ends and thinks they add to the lack the symmetry in the design. She’s concerned that the house is situated too close to the road compared to where the other houses may be able to be sited on adjacent lots because of the shape of those lots. Sliding the house back some would alleviate this and potential zoning issues. She is concerned about the materials that are being proposed and if natural materials can’t be chosen, she asked the applicants to choose materials that look natural. She had some symmetry comments and thinks that adding some more windows would help with the rhythm, achieve symmetry, and alleviate some large expanses of wall with no windows. She suggested adding a chimney to the front of the house. To her, not seeing a chimney from the front of the house looks awkward. Also had some suggestions about garage doors and sliding doors. She asked them not to use vinyl for the garage doors but to use wood or a hardie composite that shows the grain. Also suggested the applicant stay away from double wide garage doors and to include muntins and mullions in both the front, side, and sliding doors, instead of solid panes of glass. George Birman thinks it’s a great start and will be a beautiful home. He had comments related to specific topics as they related to his observations and what is in the ARB Design Principles: Balance- a front door that is more centered would help with balance and would be in keeping with a lot of what is found in the village. He also had comments on the gable ends and roof lines and how to make them more balanced; Materials- agrees with Stephanie about using materials that are natural or look as close to natural as possible; Colors- doesn’t have a problem with the color of the siding but does not think the color of the trim is in keeping with the character of the village. Bridg had a follow up comment about the pool fencing and asked the architect to think about it because it can really determine the feel of the property. Susannah commented that she really can’t get behind the materials proposed, particularly the use of vinyl. She also doesn’t love the choice of slate for the roof and doesn’t think it is in keeping with the character of the village. She feels the front porch is reminiscent of a ranch as opposed to an historical architectural feature. She also thinks the dark color choice for the trim is not a good one. In general, this design is a big departure from what is found in the village and not in keeping with the historic nature and character of the village. She feels it would stand out as opposed to blending in with the community and is a dramatic departure from what is currently found in the village. Bridg followed up with one more general comment. He doesn’t think it’s proper for the ARB to be too dogmatic about materials and that there are plenty of synthetic materials that read as natural. He thinks that as an aesthetic board, the ARB should be judging a plan on its merits and what it’s going to look like, not it’s chemistry. Wayne commented to remind the applicant that according to the code, they need to locate and identify trees of a certain size on their survey that they plan to take down.
Mr. Nelson asked if the feedback and suggestions he heard were just personal opinions or are they things that need to be done? Susannah explained that the ARB is not there to tell an applicant how to design their house. In these presubmission conferences, the ARB is tasked with giving applicants suggestions and feedback on preliminary plans and the applicant can choose to come back for up to 3 of these conferences at no charge before finalizing their plans and submitting their building permit application for approval. The plans must be approved by a majority vote of the board in order to be issued a building permit. Mr. Nelson asked about the roof and what kind of materials are acceptable. Susannah suggested he drive around the village to see what is currently used. Stephanie explained that cedar shake is always acceptable. Slate could work but in the right way. She is not in favor of asphalt, but she is only one vote. Bridgford commented that architectural asphalt shingles could work for this design and there are several examples of such that can be found in the village. Nicholas (the architect) had some questions and comments about symmetry. George gave some feedback. He said he has no problem with the L-shape and the massing. It’s more about the facade, how it appears, and the arrangement of the elements. Mr. Nelson asked if there was another board member. Susannah said yes. Mickey Kostow is the 5th board member and he is traveling.

● Next meeting date (if needed): December 11th, 2021 .
● Motion to adjourn at 12:48pm was made by Susannah and seconded by Stephanie. All Board members present voted in favor.