The Planning and Zoning Commission heard an application for the subdivision of 19 Valeview Road into two lots at its meeting on July 27.
The presentation was given by Tom Quinn, engineer with Peak Engineers, LLC. on behalf of the owners of the parcel in question, Gregory and Carolyn Wheeler.
The proposal would subdivide 19 Valeview Road into a five-acre home lot and a new two-acre lot.
According to Quinn, both lots would comply with all regulation minimums and have been approved for feasibility by the health and fire departments.
“Subdivision plans are hypothetical plans,” said Town Planner Bob Nerney.
It was for this reason that Quinn drew up a conceptual plan for a 3,600-square-foot footprint home with a three-car garage, five-bedroom septic system and a pool and patio and presented it to the commission.
An argument unfolded about whether or not the applicant should be required to dedicate a percentage of 19 Valeview Road as open space for the purpose of conservation.
Nerney pointed to a regulation in the town plan that requires 12% of any given lot to be dedicated as open space.
However, he also noted that the requirement can be waived by the commission if the 12% amounts to less than one acre, which it does in this case.
Commissioner Franklin Wong did not agree with the rest of the commission, which felt that requiring the open space was not necessary because of the isolation of 19 Valeview Road from other open space properties in Wilton.
“The town really doesn’t want to be creating spots of small areas of open space that really aren’t connected,” said Bob Nerney.
“There’s little value of an isolated parcel of open space,” said Commissioner Joe Fiteni. “If we were able to add it to some other contiguous open space that was next to it and not on other parcels, then there’s some value to it.”
“Conservation is exactly that,” argued Wong. “It’s conserving the land in some state other than that can be developed.”
A straw poll was taken on the matter with the vote 7-1 in favor of waiving the requirement, Wong opposed.
The public hearing was closed with the resolution scheduled to be given at the meeting on Sept. 15.