Contact Us
New Canaan Daily Voice serves New Canaan, CT
Return to your home site


Breaking News: Unsettled Weather Pattern Will Bring Rain, Followed By Snow Chance: Here's What To Expect

Letter: New Canaan Man Wants Zone D Hearing Reopened

NEW CANAAN, Conn. — The Daily Voice accepts signed original letters to the editor. Email them to

Open Letter to New Canaan Planning and Zoning Commissioners

Dear Sirs:

My letter of July 27, 2013, spoke to the fact that Zone D is not needed. I also spoke to the necessity of more public dialogue and consideration of public concerns. Rather than thoughtlessly passing Zone D, the Commission should provide for proper public discussion of concerns and the potential consequences of this action — more sunlight is desperately needed.

Consider this imaginary conversation between Sam, who lives near Elm and Grove Streets, and his friend Ben.

Sam: I am worried that Zone D will change and urbanize our Elm and Grove Street area and ruin our village feeling. Why do we need Zone D?

Ben: The west side of New Canaan is different than the east side of New Canaan.

Sam: What?

Ben: The tennis center area is in Business Zone B on the west side, and that’s not much like the Business Zone B area on the east side of New Canaan, so we need a new Zone D for the area where the tennis center is.

Sam: Oh.

Ben: But don’t worry about the changes, because there are no real changes.

Sam: So why has the Zone D proposal been expanded to include the Food Emporium and some other properties that are now in Zone A?

Ben: Those Zone A properties are next to Zone B.

Sam: Why not leave Zone A alone?

Ben: Don’t worry. Nothing significant is being changed.

Sam: Then why change?

Ben: Well, there may not be any good reason to change Zone A, but one of the property owners in Zone B wants his zone changed.

Sam: Why?

Ben: Because his buildings don’t comply with current zoning regulations, but they were grandfathered many years ago.

Sam: Oh.

Sam: By the way, I don’t understand why Zone D will permit things like Auto Servicing and Athletic Facilities where the supermarket is now.

Ben: Yes, that’s a change, but not really a change.

Sam: Also, I don’t understand why Zone D will now permit Supermarkets and other things in the Zone B area, where the tennis center is now.

Ben: Yes, that’s a change, but not really a change.

Sam: What about the fact that the 30,000-square-foot size limit on Supermarkets is being increased?

Ben: That’s not a change—that’s only a deletion. To allow for unlimited size, they just deleted the limit. Bigger is better.

Sam: I am alarmed that car traffic on Grove, Elm and Seminary Streets might double.

Ben: Maybe, but they will be looking into that before long.

Sam: And aren’t we running out of parking in the area?

Ben: Yes, that is a real issue, but the town gets quite a bit of money by selling parking spaces that it doesn’t have, like the $375,000 the town got by a 50-space reduction in the otherwise required parking spaces for the Stamford Hospital offices that are being put on Grove Street.

Sam: Oh.

Sam: Also, people around town are complaining about the way the Zone D Public Hearing was mishandled and closed to further public discussion.

Ben: Maybe it could have been handled better.

Sam: Why vote now? Can’t we reopen the Public Hearing?

Ben: It’s too late to reopen the hearing. The Commission has to vote now because the changes are urgent.

Sam: But I thought there weren’t any changes.

Ben: Nothing people should be told about.

Sam: That isn’t fair. Is it legal?

Ben: Who cares?

Commissioners, please care enough to do things fairly and correctly. Many legitimate concerns with Zone D need to be addressed, as well as the ill-considered rush of the proceedings. Don’t approve the proposal on Aug. 27 or other meetings!

Yours truly,

David L. Mordy

to follow Daily Voice New Canaan and receive free news updates.