We Want Bates Troy and City of Binghamton Officials To Explain Why An Industrial Dry Cleaning Plant Was Allowed In A High-Density Residential Area
Evidence that Bates Troy Is Too Close to Residential Housing
October 21 Update: Please visit our new website, RestoreTheWestside.org for information concerning the procedural error we have identified.
The whole story behind the approval of Bates Troy's use variance (to build an industrial dry cleaning plant in a residential area), area variance (to disregard the zoning requirements of buildings within a residential area), Series A Site Plan Review (granting approval of an industrial dry cleaning plant in a R-3 and C-1 area), and a negative SEQR declaration (declaring that there are no potentially substantial environmental effects worth considering) is complicated and we have only begun to unravel it. However, as we have begun to dig deeper into the story, we are discovering a series of distortions, mistakes, false statements and oddly lax behavior that indicates a major wrong was committed on the residents of Binghamton's Westside. It has taken us time to learn the intricacies of city, county and state environmental and zoning laws but we are now prepared to begin giving details of Bates Troy's zoning mistake.
The analysis below is based upon a close reading of two documents that were released to us by the City of Binghamton Building and Code Enforcement Department and the City of Binghamton Zoning Board of Appeals. These documents, when read closely, provide the evidence needed to prove that the only reason Bates Troy was granted permission to expand an industrial dry cleaning plant into a high-density residential area is because of numerous violations of the law.
Please take a moment to download the following files and review them. Exhibit One of Bates Troy Violates Zoning Law (FOIA response from the Binghamton Building and Code office) and Exhibit Two of Bates Troy Violates Zoning Law (FOIA response from the Binghamton Zoning Board of Appeals).
We are preparing a more detailed analysis of these documents but in the meantime we would like to draw your attention to a few things. In the letter from Jennifer Yonkoski, Senior Planner, dated May 2 we are told that the Bates Troy expansion can only be permitted as long as:
- The land use protects the public health, safety and welfare
- The land use will encourage and promote a suitable and safe environment for the surronding neighborhood and will not cause substantial injury to the value of other property in the neighborhood.
- The land use will not adversely change the established character or apperance of the neighborhood.
We say that all of these rules have been violated by the Bates Troy expansion. Our community is suffering and our health is suffering because of a zoning mistake. It is quite clear that Bates Troy should have never been allowed to move into our residential area.
We will update this section of our website soon. In the meantime, we will say that a careful review of Exhibit Two reveals violations of city, county and state environmental and zoning laws. We will provide specifics concerning these violations in due time.
It is our belief that Bates Troy should not have received permission to expand their Dry Cleaning Plant. Under the law, there are certain ways to remedy a mis-zoning. We will pursue these options in the hopes of forcing Bates Troy to move further from residential housing.
Bates Troy Dirty Neighbor is an ad hoc organization of concerned families living around the pollution produced by the Bates Troy Dry Cleaning Plant located at 151 Laurel Ave, Binghamton, NY 13905. We demand that Bates Troy comply with the laws of the State of New York. We may not have lawyers, money or high-ranking political allies. But we have something far more important: the truth is on our side.
"It is the public policy of the City that every person is entitled to ambient noise levels that are not detrimental to life, health, and enjoyment of his or her property."
-City of Binghamton Noise Control Ordinance