Wetlands commission OKs multifamily housing complex in Wilton

Renderings of the proposed multifamily housing development at 141 Danbury Road and the roofdeck.

Renderings of the proposed multifamily housing development at 141 Danbury Road and the roofdeck.

Contributed images

WILTON — A 173-unit multifamily proposal on Danbury Road passed its penultimate test Thursday after the project was approved by the town’s Inland Wetlands Commission.

Its final step will be to gain approval from the Planning and Zoning Commission, which could not offer a decision until the wetlands group signed off on the project that abuts the Norwalk River.

The commission passed the project in a 3-1 vote, with commissioner Theodora Pinou giving the thumbs down. Her reason, she explained to Chairman Nick Lee, was a desire for more time to review the development plans that include property sitting directly on the riverfront, and weigh the effects that new residents would have on the “town’s valuable resource.”

“These are major projects,” Pinou said.

She asked that the decision be pushed to the next meeting, but Lee said he felt the commission had ample time to review the proposal following a presentation from representatives for 141 Danbury Road.

Attorney Lisa Feinberg and project manager Erik Lindquist detailed the stormwater micromanagement system that will be put in place. Feinberg also explained the plan calls for removal of the slate of asphalt currently near the riverfront. In its place will be an open green space.

Lindquist said that the water management system would also be effective against the majority of microplastics, often that come from car tires, that could possibly seep into the river.

Fish and aquatic wildlife habitats along the riverbank were also concerns of Pinou, saying that upon her on-site visit she was not able to get close enough to see. The development team could not give a definitive answer on their presence, but said their development of the area would not have a negative effect on them.

Pinou asked fellow commissioners about including a request to erect signage near the riverfront to deter residents or visitors from littering, but Lee stated the commission has never requested environmental education signage as a condition of approval of the whole project.

Lee, as well as commissioners Rick Stow and Penelope Koechl, then voted to approve the project.