Several Articles Have Appeared In Local Newspapers:
Here is a link to the Saratogian article: Link To Saratogian
This article Is From The Gazette
Saratoga Springs neighbors oppose plan for ‘Pink Palace’
Bonacio Construction of Saratoga Springs is seeking zoning approval to renovate the building and convert the empty and deteriorating former Skidmore College property, commonly known as the “Pink Palace” for its colored stone exterior, into 53 apartments.
Bonacio will appear before the ZBA Monday night to continue a previous public hearing on requested minimum parking and minimum lot size variances. The board could make a decision that night, but isn’t required to do so.
Residents in the Union Avenue and White Street neighborhood are expected to turn out in force. Some 258 people had signed an online petition as of Wednesday afternoon and lawn signs saying “No Moore, No Way,” have popped up around the area.
“The community is eager to see this property revitalized, but the current proposal varies so extremely from the zoning regulations that it will introduce pedestrian and vehicle safety issues as well as strain the already limited street parking,” opponents said in a statement this week.
Moore Hall, which sits near the corner of Union Avenue and Circular Street, was built by Skidmore in 1957, when the college campus was located there.
The college used the building as a 135-room dorm until 2006, when it was sold to a developer who proposed tearing the building down and replacing it with three new condominium buildings. Those plans, however, never went forward, and Moore Hall has remained vacant until Bonacio Construction bought an option on it this year.
Bonacio Construction contends that the existing 54 parking spaces will be adequate for 53 apartments, though city zoning requires two parking spots per apartment. The developer also says there’s a need for affordable apartments near downtown.
Bonacio Construction President Sonny Bonacio did not respond to a request for comment Wednesday.
Opponents in the neighborhood have also gone to the City Council, which is taking an interest despite the application pending before an appointed land use board.
“I don’t think it is appropriate for the City Council to interfere, but I’ve been contacted by a relatively large number of individuals who are concerned about the Moore Hall situation,” said Public Safety Commissioner Chris Mathiesen during Tuesday’s council meeting.
In the past month, the city Planning Board has given a favorable advisory opinion to the ZBA. Mayor Joanne Yepsen noted that even if the ZBA approves them, the plans would need a site plan review from the Planning Board and approval from the city’s Design Review Commission before any renovations could begin.
The zoning board meeting will begin at 7 p.m. Monday at City Hall.