Posted by: Patricia Salkin | August 9, 2015

NY Appellate Court Upholds Approval of Special Permit

Petitioner commenced this CPLR article 78 proceeding challenging the determination of respondent City of Rochester Planning Commission approving the application of respondent Morgan Management, LLC, for a special permit. The special permit allowed Morgan to construct an apartment building on property owned by respondent Monroe Voiture No. 111 Memorial Home, Inc., La Societe Des 40 Hommes, “in association with the overall redevelopment of the property.” Petitioner is a not-for-profit corporation that owned the property adjacent to the Monroe Voiture property, which includes the George Eastman House.

Pursuant to Chapter 120, Article XVII of the Municipal Code of the City of Rochester, the City of Rochester established Planned Development District No. 14, which includes the property of petitioner and Monroe Voiture. The City’s intent in establishing PDD No. 14 was “to recognize and permit a defined area for the delivery of programs and community services offered by George Eastman House and the Monroe Voiture … and to provide for the orderly growth and development of the properties” Following a hearing, the Planning Commission found that the proposed project met the City’s standards for approval of a special permit, including that the proposed project would be in harmony with the goals, standards and objectives of the City’s Comprehensive Plan. Furthermore, the Planning Commission considered that, in addition to the construction of a multifamily apartment building, the proposed project included renovation of the clubhouse, allowing for the continuance and expansion of the programs and community services offered by Monroe Voiture. Thus, the court found that the Planning Commission’s approval of Morgan’s application for a special permit was not illegal, irrational, or arbitrary and capricious. 

George Eastman House, Inc. v Morgan Management, 2015 WL 4139666 (NYAD 4 Dept. 7/10/2015)

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