CITY OF DERBY
REDEVELOPMENT AGENCY MEETING
OCTOBER 13, 2004
DERBY CITY HALL – ALDERMANIC CHAMBERS – 6:30 P.M.
Mayor Marc J. Garofalo called the meeting to order at 6:42 p.m. All rose and pledged allegiance to the flag.
Present: The Honorable Mayor Marc J. Garofalo
Vincent J. Guardiano
Also Present: Alderwoman Sheila Parizo, Alderwoman Linda Fusco, Alderman Bruce Sill, Alderman Ronald Sill, Alderman Robert Gabianelli, Alderman Joseph Bassi, Alderman Michael Flora, Sr. (arrived at 6:55 p.m.), Ted Estwan, Jr., Chairman, Planning & Zoning Commission, Jack Walsh, Chairman, Parks & Recreation Commission, Richard Lutz, Mayoral Assistant, Richard J. Buturla, Corporation Counsel, Warren Holcomb, Corporation Counsel
ADDITIONS, DELETIONS, CORRECTIONS & ADOPTION OF AGENDA
A MOTION was made by Mr. Guardiano with a second by Mr. Stevens to adopt the agenda as presented. Motion carried.
Mayor Garofalo – In that we are going to hear a presentation from the Corporation Counsel regarding the redevelopment project if there’s no objection from the agency I would ask that we have the Public Portion after the presentation so that people can be better informed in terms of asking questions. If there’s no objection we will do that. As you know the Redevelopment Agency and the Board of Aldermen did vote to enter into a Preferred Developer Agreement with Ceruzzi Derby Redevelopment. We have executed that. There was a sixty-day due diligence period as part of the document - that has passed as of last week. I had a conversation with the Ceruzzi developers today and they are all set to go forward and we can expect the second installment, pursuant to the Preferred Developer Agreement, next week and there’s other timelines that we want to have Corporation Counsel outline. Also, the Redevelopment Agency and the Board of Aldermen will be distributed a draft of the Redevelopment Plan pursuant to the Statutes. We will not be taking any action tonight on any items, but we will be taking that for advisement at a future meeting. Also, the Redevelopment Agency will be meeting on a monthly basis to make sure that this is kept in the forefront and to have regular updates with the next regular meeting to be held November 10, 2004.
Atty. Butura – At the last meeting of the Redevelopment Agency and the last meeting of the Board of Aldermen that pertained to this matter both boards authorized the City to enter into a Preferred Developer Agreement with Ceruzzi Derby Redevelopment, LLC. (COPIES OF THE DOCUMENT WERE HANDED OUT AT THIS POINT TO AGENCY AND BOARD OF ALDERMEN MEMBERS). The Ceruzzi people had a sixty-day period from execution to conduct due diligence to determine whether they wanted to proceed with this project. In exchange for that right they posted a $100,000 non-refundable development fee. In addition to that they then proceeded to go forward and utilize their own resources, if you will, to make a serious analysis within the last sixty days concerning whether they wanted to go forward. They did in fact advise both the Mayor and me that they intend to proceed with the project. I know they have engaged the services of a real property consultant for the purpose of reaching out to the various property owners located within the redevelopment zone. I know they made contact with a number of them – at least that’s what I’ve been told by the Ceruzzi folks, and they are proceeding in accordance with the agreement to discuss the acquisition of the privately owned properties within the Phase I A area of the redevelopment zone. As you will recall, the Phase I A area, which is the only area that we are talking about tonight, is the area located from the west of Caroline Street to the wall of Hubbell’s going back down towards the river - bounded also by Route 34. So in that regard they are proceeding. They will be delivering another check in the amount of $100,000 pursuant to paragraph 2.4 of the agreement. That check is going to be delivered early next week. They will then proceed further to produce plans and the like in the very near future. They will then be moving forward to go to the Derby Planning & Zoning Commission for the required permits. The Derby Planning & Zoning Commission as you may know is presently in the process of revising some of its regulations and also providing for an architectural review component of the regulations for any development done within a redevelopment zone, which is something I know the Board of Aldermen and the Redevelopment Agency as well as a developer concur are important criteria. Within ten days of acquiring the various approvals from the land use agencies the Ceruzzi folks will be posting a Letter of Credit in the amount of $1.5 million, which Letter of Credit will be utilized by the City to the extent the City needs to, to acquire properties located within the Phase I A zone for the redevelopment project. We have multiple things going at this time on a series of parallel paths. We have the Ceruzzi people analyzing and preparing plans. We have the City moving forward with a Redevelopment Plan – I’m going to be handing out to members of the Agency a draft Redevelopment Plan. This is a draft document at this time so this is not a public document at this time. Within the near future we should have a relatively finalized Redevelopment Plan to then forward to the appropriate agencies including the Planning & Zoning Commission for comment. There will be a public hearing on the document at that time. It will then come back ultimately to the Redevelopment Agency as well as the Board of Aldermen for approval. That’s a broad overview as to where we are at this time. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask.
Mayor Garofalo asked Atty. Buturla to give the members a timeline as we know them to be based on the provisions of the document.
Upon execution, 60-day due diligence period (that has passed as of 10/5/04)
Post $100,000 at the expiration of due diligence period (will happen next week)
Within 90 days after the execution of the agreement, the developer shall apply for and submit any and all applications to obtain government approvals
Within 10 days of the receipt of the permits and approvals the developer must post a $1.5 million Letter of Credit
Within 60 days from the execution of the Preferred Developer Agreement the developer will go out and start seeking some additional State funding to help defray the costs of demolition
Mayor Garofalo – Let’s go back just to clarify for everybody. So by November 4th or 5th they have to apply for the permits. Within 90 days of execution, which would be thirty days from October 4th - so that process would begin, at the latest, after November 5th. And that process could take and I would like to ask Mr. Estwan – obviously it’s a large project and a complicated project and on that we don’t want to rush, but we also know it’s a priority. So I don’t want to pin you down – but I want everyone to know that from November 5th that’s to make the application.
Ted Estwan, Chairman, Planning & Zoning Commission – We began discussions at our regular monthly meeting of the Planning & Zoning Commission for the changes in the redevelopment zone, which affects this project. We will continue discussions at our regularly scheduled meeting, which is next Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. right here. At that point in time we will set up a tentative public hearing date of November 8, 2004 to begin the public hearing portion and posting of the proposed text and zoning changes within that specific redevelopment zone. And then at some point after the public hearing we get input from the public and we address it – you could expect probably within 30 to 60 days after that there will be a decision from the commission.
Mayor Garofalo – With respect to the change – not the specific application.
Mr. Estwan – Correct. Just to let everybody know how the process works with the Planning & Zoning Commission they will, from what I heard, come in with an application before the Planning & Zoning Commission. We receive that application and then we schedule it for a meeting, for a public hearing, if needed, the following month. So if they apply some people will question if they apply around the 5th and submit an application and we don’t start a public hearing until the 8th regarding the proposed zoning changes we won’t hear their application until the following month.
Mr. Guardiano – The proposed zoning changes – is it going to be for the entire downtown district or just for the specific…
Mr. Estwan – Specific.
Mr. Guardiano – So if they do come back for a Phase II we’ll have to re-do the process?
Mr. Estwan – That’s right. Again Mr. Buturla explained it best. There’s a lot of parallel things happening right now and that will continue to happen over the next 60 to 90 days – through this commission, the Planning & Zoning Commission, public hearings.
Mayor Garofalo – You have to change the zone first, if you decide to change the zone…
Atty. Buturla – It’s a text change, right?
Mr. Estwan – Right. It’s the only type of change that requires a public hearing.
Mayor Garofalo – The point is this thing is not going to be finished by November 30th.
Mr. Estwan – It’s also fair to say that the process will begin and there will be plenty of things going on. There’s a lot of people in the audience this evening. If you’re going to watch the actions and the meetings of the Redevelopment Agency please feel free to also come to the Planning & Zoning Commission meetings. We meet the third Tuesday of every month. If there are special meetings needed to facilitate timeline wise, we will hold them. So please we would ask that the public come out during those meetings also.
Atty. Buturla – There is an outside closing date. The closing with respect to transfer of title to any City-owned property to the developer shall take place 60 days after the first date on which only the City or the developer hold fee title to the property within the Phase I A area or on the outside June 30, 2005. It is anticipated that construction activity within the zone shall commence by no later than 180 days after the closing date and that the completion of construction of Phase I A shall occur by a date no later than twenty-four months after the closing date. So you’re talking about a project that literally has begun in earnest and will continue over a multi-year period, probably in the area of two to three years with a number of things happening on parallel path.
Mr. Orazietti – Atty. Buturla the way I understand it in my notes within the due diligence period the developer shall submit construction phasing plans. Have they done that?
Atty. Buturla – We have seen a draft phasing plan. We do not have a final construction phasing plan at this time.
Mr. Orazietti – Are you going to make copies available to the Redevelopment Agency?
Atty. Buturla – At some point. It is a draft working document that we have seen in terms of a phasing plan. I know they’re finalizing it and they – I think the Mayor intends to hold a special meeting to proceed further on a number of those topics.
Mr. Orazietti – Do you feel comfortable that we’re going to get that additional $100,000 by October 18th?
Atty. Buturla – Absolutely. It’s been promised for next week.
Mr. Guardiano – This is more of a theoretical question. As you know there’s something going to the State Supreme Court regarding eminent domain in New London coming up. I just want to make sure – I know the odds of that – them losing that case…
Atty. Buturla – That’s not going to the Connecticut Supreme Court. That case is going to I believe the U.S. Supreme Court. That case has already been decided by the Connecticut Supreme Court.
Mr. Guardiano – There’s a chance though. I mean that could throw a monkey wrench into the whole process. In your negotiations with them have you considered this and is this some type of preliminary planning?
Mayor Garofalo – The document speaks for itself. The negotiations are finished.
Mr. Guardiano – But I’m talking about if we do have to go to eminent domain to acquire some of the property?
Atty. Buturla – This document was drafted against the backdrop of existing, well-established State law.
Mr. Guardiano – I understand that. But I just wondered if there were any discussions just in case – God forbid if they lose that case.
Atty. Buturla – I don’t believe (inaudible).
Mr. Orazietti – Also do I understand that the developer is going to complete construction within twenty-four months after the closing date?
Atty. Buturla – Yes. The closing date is sixty days from the date both the City and/or the developer hold title or on the outside June 30, 2005.
Mr. Orazietti – So the target date for that is?
Atty. Buturla – If you take the outside date of June 30, 2005 and you went out twenty-four months you’re looking at June 30, 2007.
Mr. Orazietti – So you’re saying June 30, 2007 this project will be completed. This construction…Phase I A will be completed. Is that correct?
Atty. Buturla – That is correct. That’s what the document says.
Mayor Garofalo – Hearing no further questions from the Agency or Board of Aldermen members the Mayor opened the public portion of the meeting.
Leo Moscato, Sr., 34 Lewis Street, Derby, CT – Mr. Mayor, Honorable Members, first of all I want to say congratulations for the hard work that you people have been doing to reach this point. I myself feel when I say it’s not going to happen overnight as the Mayor said. We don’t want to rush into it – we want to make sure the plans are right and everything is going to go in the right direction. But now my concern is the buildings that were partially demolished. Now that Hubbell’s is gone is this going to be taken care of? Are we going to get rid of this unsightly site that we’ve put up with for almost a year? And if so, can anybody give me an idea as to when this might happen? I’m talking about the existing buildings that were partially demolished. The one abutting the pool hall and the one that’s against the Hubbell Brothers. Now I was told and I also realize – I’m old enough to realize that things change. People tell me things and of course scenarios can change along the way because of different situations, but I was told that perhaps once Hubbell’s moved out that these buildings, within two weeks period hopefully they will be down. Can I get some kind of assurance that these buildings will be down way before this project gets into action because I think that…
Mayor Garofalo – Well that particular part of the multiple facets of this project has been expressed by myself and Mr. Orazietti in conversations with the developer and actually with Mr. Buturla as well to make sure that the phasing, as we go into the phasing, but that the first priority be to take care of the demolition of those buildings. We have to do the remediation of Hubbell – 284 Main Street – and the remediation of 256, which is next to the billiard parlor. Those are a priority as has been expressed by members of the Board of Aldermen, the Redevelopment Agency and I think everybody in town to at least get that part of it completed as soon as possible in order to…
Mr. Moscato – As soon as possible means what Mayor? I’m not trying to pinpoint you on any day, I mean if I was to pinpoint anyone I can mention names what they promised me but I’m not about to do that because things do change, okay?
Mayor Garofalo – We had to obviously wait for Hubbell Brothers to vacate the building.
Mr. Moscato – They didn’t vacate it yet?
Mayor Garofalo – No we had to do that. They vacated the building a week ago.
Mr. Moscato – Okay they’re vacated now. So we’ve got them vacated. The building is going to be vacated now from here on what can you tell me – give me an idea. I’ll tell you the reason why I’m so concerned. My tenants – I have very high-profile tenants in the City of Derby and I think they’ve put up with enough of this ugliness across the street from them. I myself as a former city official and a city resident and a taxpayer in Derby sometimes I am very embarrassed to go around the State as I do with my activities and say I’m from Derby because I get a very negative comment because of the situation that’s happening right now in downtown Derby. I think it’s only fair that my tenants pay their rent on time that allows me to pay my taxes on time. It’s only fair that we get rid of this unsightliness. After that what happens with the development that’s a different scenario. All I’m interested in right now is that I can get some kind of indication, other than what I’ve already got, because it doesn’t seem that the indication that I already have doesn’t seem that it is going to come to fruit.
Mr. Orazietti – Mr. Moscato I’ve engaged in a conversation with Mr. Ceruzzi also and as Mayor Garofalo said and reassure you that the developer was told the first priority of business is to take those buildings down. It’s very unsightly; not only for you, but everybody here and everybody on this board – that’s everybody’s first priority and that’s what we’re going to do. One way or the other those buildings are coming down. Can I tell you it’s going to happen next week? No I can’t. I’m going to tell you one thing, we’re going to push and push and push until those buildings come down. You can take that to the bank.
Mr. Moscato – Okay – just one more comment…
Mr. Orazietti – We understand. We all understand where you’re coming from. I want you to understand that that is our number one priority and there’s no smoke screen here. That’s going down.
Mr. Moscato – Mr. Orazietti I understand that and I respect each and every one of you. I’m not here to embarrass anyone. I sat on that side of the table so I know what it’s all about.
Mr. Orazietti – I just want you to understand where we’re coming from regarding those buildings.
Mayor Garofalo – Mr. Moscato, the issue is it’s been very clear all the way along. We have to remediate – Hubbell was out a week ago; we have to remediate the building. The building is not in the redevelopment zone right now, which is an issue that is subject to negotiation and further discussion with the developer if it’s in the City’s interest to put it all into the development zone – it ends at 280. But either way, regardless of that part of it, it’s our intention to take the buildings down as soon as possible.
Mr. Moscato – Okay. But you can’t say six months, two months, three months from now?
Mr. Orazietti – Leo it could be two weeks, it could be three weeks, it could be four weeks.
Mr. Moscato – Okay. We’ll let it go at that. But you know where I’m coming from though.
Mr. Orazietti – Well I don’t know who has been promising you Leo but talk to the right people to get the promises.
Mayor Garofalo – Anybody else from the public?
Vincent Milardo, Wakelee Avenue, Ansonia – I own the paint store in Derby and the building and some other property in Derby. My main concern is not when they’re going to be taken down but I’m afraid are we making a contract to take the buildings down and re-build as well? Or are we going to do like New Haven and have sand tables for everybody to see what we propose to put there in the future prior to any building? If this is a deal where you’re going to knock buildings down and the deal is already made as to what is going to be built there, then I’m defiantly opposed to this. I mean we waited twenty years down there on Main Street for something to happen - it finally happens. But I don’t think it’s fair to make any promises to a contractor that he’s going to be able to build apartments or something without full knowledge to the public, without prior sand tables or models depicting what you propose. Strictly take the buildings down that’s fine. We waited long enough – we could wait another ten years. But what’s going to be put there later is our concern. He and I have businesses – they’ve been there for years. I’m not worried about mine because I could rent them to the public. I got two floors, maybe an attorney or somebody would like to be across from City Hall. I mean all it’s doing for me is (inaudible). But if I had a restaurant and I would say the quality that Leo has I certainly don’t want apartments or something you know. I want to know what is going after the buildings are knocked down? As long as the deal doesn’t include any future construction without the public’s knowledge and like New Haven, you know, drawings and models of what you contemplate – you know what I mean?
Mayor Garofalo – Yes.
Mr. Milardo – That’s my…thank you very much.
Mayor Garofalo – Thank you Mr. Milardo. Anybody else from the public?
Carl Douglass, Shelton, CT – Have you completed design work yet? Have the architects completed design work?
Mayor Garofalo – No.
Mr. Douglass – And how much of the row do you plan to take out? All of them or just?
Mayor Garofalo – The road?
Mr. Douglass – The whole row – all those old buildings from the parts you’ve already taken out all the way down the street to the end of those buildings. Do you want to take out the whole thing or just part of it?
Mayor Garofalo – Right now what we know to be true is that 280 and 284, which are joined together, the former Hubbell building and the one next to it and 256 are slated for immediate demolition.
Mr. Douglass – How about the rest of the row?
Mayor Garofalo – The rest of them – that’s not been proposed yet.
Mr. Douglass – And all plans have been worked up by the architect…
Mayor Garofalo – There’s a draft schematic in the Preferred Developer Agreement and that is also on the City web site. Anybody else from the public?
Dominick Thomas, Esq., 315 Main Street, Derby, CT – My apologies for coming in late. I’m a downtown businessman also and I just had a few questions. I know there’s been talk about the remediation. I was just wondering at what stage it’s at? I’m assuming the remediation is in the non-development zone. I think that both of those buildings are in the non-development zone.
Atty. Buturla – The remediation, the type of remediation that the Mayor is speaking about most likely is asbestos material within the buildings in terms of demolition. And as you know, Hubbell’s just vacated last week so you know the City will be turning to that in the very near future in terms of getting a pre-demolition survey done and then determining the type of demolition and the method and means by which they will do it. I know you know what I’m saying.
Atty. Thomas – That’s what I mean. So you’re at that stage with Hubbell’s. Is the other building in the development zone or the non-development zone?
Atty. Buturla – Everything else is in. The development zone stops at the Hubbell wall. So Hubbell over to the corner is not in the zone.
Mayor Garofalo – East wall.
Atty. Thomas – So the developer would be responsible for the remediation on the building adjacent to the pool hall?
Atty. Buturla – Right.
Atty. Thomas – Do you know whether or not any Phase I’s have been done on that building or Phase II?
Atty. Buturla – I’m going to speak from memory. I know they’ve done their environmental due diligence – the developer has. Because they’ve let the sixty days go and now they have come up with yet another $100,000 and move forward in a big way, and then come up with a $1.5 million (inaudible). So I’m sure they’ve done what they had to do with regard to the environmental work. But in terms of the type of remediation the Mayor was talking about I believe, and this is from memory, that the Pre-Demolition Survey with respect to asbestos on the building within the zone has already been done. I believe that has been done. The Hubbell building hasn’t.
Atty. Thomas – Thank you very much.
Mayor Garofalo – Further comments?
Carl Yacobacci, 10 Lombardi Drive, Derby, CT – I live on Lombardi Drive and I also have four pieces of property on Main Street one of them is right next to River Restaurant, the old Artisan Press. I just have a couple of questions on that since all of these dates are going forward I have a running business there and you’re talking about all this stuff – demolition and everything – by June ’05. What provisions have been made for the established businesses that have good buildings there on that section to relocate us to kind of like a light business district? Pay for the moving – what developments…
Atty. Buturla – You would be entitled – you are entitled to relocation benefits under the Uniform Relocation Assistance Act.
Mr. Yacobacci – To where though? Does Derby have a plan?
Atty. Buturla – And the developer is responsible under the agreement for picking up and bearing those costs. Are you presently within the zone?
Mr. Yacobacci – Yes.
Atty. Buturla – The property that you’re talking about?
Mr. Yacobacci – Yes. I’m in the back. I have the only really good standing building.
Mayor Garofalo – The building on Main Street standing by itself.
Mr. Yacobacci – I mean we have business plans that are in place that are now on hold because of this but you’re looking at only a few months and what is going to be done to provide us a place?
Atty. Buturla – I sincerely doubt there will be a quick relocation with anyone. What the Mayor’s talking about is a timeline (inaudible) types of things that are done leading up to a project. Acquisition of property, zoning approvals, plans, construction phasing – all of those things. So there will be a lot of different things happening at once and I’m sure and I don’t know if you’ve been contacted by the developer or not at this point…
Mr. Yacobacci – No I have not. I received a letter on October 3rd as a matter of fact and I think its Gary?
Atty. Buturla – Gary Konnoff.
Mr. Yacobacci – We spoke one day last week and he was not around and I wasn’t around so we…
Atty. Buturla – I’m sure that he’ll be speaking with you in the near future and it will be worked out over time.
Mayor Garofalo – That is the developer’s representative.
Mr. Yacobacci – Okay. But what plans does Derby – does Derby have any plans for buildings with relocation to get us into something of like property? (Inaudible) putting in a showroom and we have all the front property out on Main Street and so on and so forth. And that’s the kind of thing I’m looking at is where are we going to go?
Atty. Buturla – It will be a three-way process – the City, the developer and you. And we’ll have to work cooperatively together to try to solve that. Each is unique.
Mr. Yacobacci – Those plans are forthcoming?
Atty. Buturla – They’ll be done on a per property order basis. Because everyone’s needs are different. Some don’t need a retail location, some do. And the City does own property that can be utilized as a potential relocation resource.
Mr. Yacobacci – And this Gary Konnoff he’s going to be the one to speak to?
Atty. Buturla – At the initial – the way the agreement works initially it’s the developer’s obligation to come forward and speak with you.
Mr. Yacobacci – So we’ll speak with him?
Atty. Buturla – Yeah.
Mr. Yacobacci – Second thing on the proposal for 270 apartments I haven’t heard anything about what this is going to do to our school system. I have two kids in the school system – it’s overcrowded. We have junior high and the high school in one building. We can’t get a school passed in this town to make another high school. With 270 apartments obviously and even though they say they’re going to mostly one-bedroom people have kids and they come in and so on and so forth. What’s this going to affect the schools and how are we going to provide for these kids and say even additional traffic of having another 270, 300 cars downtown?
Mayor Garofalo – That will be addressed in the Planning & Zoning. The parking – all of those things are a function of the Planning & Zoning.
Mr. Yacobacci – So it’s the third Tuesday of each month we bring those issues up?
Mayor Garofalo – Correct. When it’s on the agenda. There’s a process when they make their application that would be the appropriate time.
Mr. Yacobacci – How do we put this on the agenda?
Mayor Garofalo – When they make an application.
Atty. Buturla – I’m sure there’ll be publicity on it and I know the legal notices are regularly posted.
Mr. Estwan – Make a note – November 8th that is a tentative date and we will discuss it at our meeting on Tuesday night to have a special public hearing to address all those issues regarding parking, etc…put it on your calendar in pencil – not in pen yet because it could change.
Mayor Garofalo – And including one of the issues that is being included and this kind of goes a little bit to what one of the previous speakers said architectural review by the City so that everybody understands very clearly what is going to be built, what it is going to look like and hopefully in multi-dimensional view.
Mr. Yacobacci – And I guess the last – for Phase II, when is Phase II coming after Phase I? Is that being planned now? Are those properties being looked at already? Or is that all down the road?
Mayor Garofalo – We want to focus on one thing first.
Mr. Yacobacci – What (inaudible) brought up is about this eminent domain. Now we all know that’s going through the Supreme Court – it’s probably going to be ruled on in January/February – does that mean that people who are in Phase I A can be taken over by eminent domain and possibly not getting the value that they need but people in Phase II if the ruling goes that they can’t take it by eminent domain now then have a bigger leveraging to negotiate the sale of their buildings?
Atty. Buturla – I can’t give you legal advice, and I’m not going to, but I will say that on behalf of the City that the eminent domain process is designed and there are procedural safeguards to ensure that property owners get Fair Market Value.
Mr. Yacobacci – It’s one of the things that I’m concerned about…
Atty. Buturla – But I can’t give you legal advice.
Mr. Yacobacci – I’m talking to two lawyers and waiting for them to call back. Thank you.
Mayor Garofalo – Anybody that didn’t…Mr. Milardo I will be happy to have you to come up again as soon as…
Mr. Milardo – I don’t want you to adjourn.
Mayor Garofalo – No I would not do that to you and you wouldn’t let me do it either – so either way. Anybody that did not speak come forward and state your name and address for the record.
Markanthony Izzo, Olivia Street, Derby, CT – With the guidelines and the procedures discussed today there was also a potential completion date. With the input from the public and meetings coming up is that a date that is set in stone or can that change later?
Atty. Buturla – The agreement provides for an outside date of June 30, 2005 and completion twenty-four months from the closing date. The only that date can be extended is if both parties to the agreement agree to extend it and that would be the City of Derby and the developer.
Mr. Izzo – Okay. What’s some of the potential roadblocks that can come up from hearing some of the public today?
Atty. Buturla – Development – the redevelopment project…
Mr. Izzo – This is best-case scenario is what I’m hearing.
Atty. Buturla – Well I don’t know if it’s best case. Best case would be sooner. But I guess redevelopment projects are complicated by nature. They have a number of moving parts all of which are occurring simultaneously and they all have to mesh. So you’re absolutely right. Many times redevelopment projects take longer than people hope. But the goal is to move forward and make steady, measurable progress and that’s something we’re all going to work real hard to try to make sure happens.
Mr. Izzo – Okay. Thank you.
Mayor Garofalo – And that’s why we’re going to meet every month to keep everybody’s feet to the fire. Anybody else that did not speak?
Richard Calvert, 40 Caroline Street, Derby, CT – My question is basically you said you have a contract with Ceruzzi, right?
Atty. Buturla – Yes.
Mr. Calvert – But you have no development plans of exactly what they are going to do?
Atty. Buturla – We know it’s 270 units. I know at various times in the last two years Ceruzzi has come forward with conceptual plans and there’s been some public display of conceptual plans. I know there are some layouts that were on the City’s web site at one time…
Mayor Garofalo – They still are.
Atty. Buturla – So, I think you can have some idea based upon that. I know that Ceruzzi is refining it and I know that they will have much more detailed plans and I know they’ll be coming forward. And this will be an on-going process. In order to make application for the Planning & Zoning Commission for example they need very detailed plans. In order to then go to the next level – the architectural review process that’s being written into the zoning regulations will be something that is above and beyond what most developers and property owners have to go through.
Mr. Calvert – Why can’t the City get involved in taking care of our buildings? A structurally sound building – it’s been there thirteen years. And work around our building and we would be fine there as taxpayers. We wouldn’t have to move. Because by the figure that you have - $1.5 million – to buyout the properties that are around here, we’re not going to get anything from them.
Atty. Buturla – I know it is our obligation under the law and I know it is the developer’s intention – either the City or the developer – to pay Fair Market Value for your property. And then you have relocation assistance.
Mr. Calvert – What is considered Fair Market Value in Derby right now?
Atty. Buturla – Fair Market Value is based upon…
Mr. Calvert – Well according to the City this is depreciating downtown and the market is not worth it.
Atty. Buturla – I can’t give you legal advice. I can just tell you what the standard is; it’s Fair Market Value.
Mr. Calvert – The City couldn’t get involved with keeping Calvert Safe & Lock at 40 Caroline Street?
Atty. Buturla – Is 40 Caroline Street within Phase I A? I believe it is, right?
Mayor Garofalo – Yes.
Atty. Buturla – The City has entered into a contract with a developer to create a redevelopment project within that zone. So right now it doesn’t contemplate the continued existence of Calvert Lock on that site.
Mr. Calvert – It would be nice if we could stay there.
Atty. Buturla – I understand what you’re saying.
Mr. Calvert – If the City could put their good word in for us.
Atty. Buturla – I understand what you’re saying.
Mr. Calvert – Timeline – when is this, when do we have to be off our property?
Atty. Buturla – Well it takes a long time. This is not something, and I think that’s the point I was trying to make to I forget who – some gentleman who asked a question about the terms of planning. Relocation would be the very last thing that’s going to happen. Let’s just take one little microcosm – Hubbell’s. One business located in downtown Derby that relocated to another place in Derby…
Mr. Calvert – For one hundred years.
Atty. Buturla – Right. They relocated to another spot in Derby. That took months for them to move their business from there to there. And they had notice well in advance and the relocation assistance terms were worked out between the City and Hubbell’s and they moved to another location within the City of Derby. So, it’s something that will occur down the road. It’s not something that’s going to occur next week. It’s not something that’s going to occur next month. And if I had a crystal ball, and I don’t, but if I wanted to guess it probably won’t occur within this year. Because that’s the way these things go forward. So you’re going to be contacted by the developer and I’m sure the developer is going to be talking about acquiring your property. I’m sure they’re going to be making offers to you. And I’m sure (inaudible).
Mr. Calvert – (Inaudible) the look of $1.5 million is going to be extremely low.
Atty. Buturla – It will be based upon Fair Market Value.
Mr. Calvert – I appreciate (inaudible).
Al Misiewicz, 171 Derby Avenue, Derby, CT – I’ve been following this since the start, which I believe is over two years now when Starwood first made their proposal. And they’ve had two years to come forward with some plans and everything and we’ve seen nothing. Now you’re telling me by June of next year you want the whole process completed and the public has not seen anything yet.
Atty. Buturla – You know I’m just the attorney on this but I will say in my own experience the public has seen a few different sets of plans based on some changing conditions over there. At one time Ceruzzi had plans that was trying to incorporate the existing structures on Main Street. And then due to a variety of factors that was impossible. As I said earlier there had been plans on the web site. There has been plans, there’s been public presentations made in this chamber because I’ve sat through them. So I don’t think that statement is entirely accurate. And I would just go forward to say – just to go a step further – there will be just to move forward with the redevelopment process, just to obtain the permits from Mr. Estwan’s agency – the Planning & Zoning Commission – you’re going to see full and complete and substantial plans as this goes forward. They have that obligation in the agreement and there’s also an architectural review process. So stay tuned I guess.
Mr. Misiewicz – Okay it’s just like I said it’s been two years and no real plans submitted and you’re telling us by June of next year that this whole process will be completed.
Atty. Buturla – No I didn’t say that. I didn’t say that. June 30, 2005 is the outside closing date in terms of the property being acquired and assembled. That doesn’t mean that it will be complete. What it means is – in fact completion is twenty-four months later. So 2007 and I’m sure (inaudible) so I mean there are lots of moving parts here. The goal is to try to complete the project by June 30, 2007 on the outside. That’s the goal.
Mr. Misiewicz – Right. What I’m saying is though you say in six months all these properties are going to be acquired and as of now people have not even been notified.
Atty. Buturla – I don’t think I said that about all the properties being acquired within six months. But in any event, I am sure the developer – just remember that sixty days ago this agreement was signed. The due diligence period just passed and I think I heard one gentleman say that he received a letter on October 3rd. So I think you’re all going to be contacted in the very near future – those within the zone are going to be contacted.
Mr. Misiewicz – Okay. I would just like to state that I feel that the City and the developer would have a lot smoother process if they would make an effort to really have the public informed. Instead it sounds like they are just going ahead and developing their plans and then just try to drop it on the City’s lap and say okay here’s the plans, let’s do it now.
Mayor Garofalo – Mr. Guardiano.
Mr. Guardiano – I just want to address some points. There’s going to be four bites of this. First of all they’re going to have a public hearing on the Text Change that’s going to be involved in that. So you’re going to get – the public’s going to get a bite of the apple there. Then they’re going to get a public hearing on the application. Then there’s going to be a public hearing of the Redevelopment Agency, which we have to approve (inaudible) then the Aldermen have to approve. So you’re going to get four bites out of the apple. So to say that they’re going to be just thrown in our lap and it’s just going to be accepted like that I think is just a little unfair. It’s obviously something that I don’t think is accurate, okay? So I just want to clarify that right now. You’re going to get four public bites out of this.
Mayor Garofalo – Don’t forget – this is the beginning of the tangible part of this process. The rest was negotiation and concepts and so forth. This is the beginning of the official part of this project that we have the agreement. Before it was just an idea, a thought, a hope, a mutual trying to get it. This is the real deal now. So this begins the process of the public input on a specific project. Not on an all over the place concept. This is talking about a very specific area and a very specific project and whatever modifications are proposed they have to be accepted. The concepts that are on the web site are concepts that were submitted by the developer. They have not been accepted by the City or adopted by the City. Those are just the last set of photographic ideas that they came up with – that’s it. We haven’t accepted it. We have an agreement that says we’re going to negotiate. They have to submit; we do not have to accept of any of this. That’s part of the agreement. Am I right counselor? We don’t have to – there’s nothing that says that the Planning & Zoning have to accept any of it. Or that the Redevelopment Agency has to accept it or the Board of Aldermen or whatever agencies have to adapt this. And certainly the Text Change is one thing because that’s more generic and frankly that gives even more bites at the apple because you’re talking about architectural review, major improvements in the parking aspect of it and the like. So I mean this is the beginning of the process. This is really not the end. I mean that was the point that I think everybody’s trying to make and I think Mr. Izzo made it too. The point is it’s still a long process and we’re really at the beginning of the "official" part of this process. Official in the sense that we have the ground rules.
Mayor Garofalo – Mr. Orazietti.
Mr. Orazietti – The way I look at it and I think everybody else who has the concerns of Derby look at is businessmen, the City and the developer (inaudible) common sense that we’re going to work together. We’re not going to – Mr. Calvert is concerned – but as far as I’m concerned Mr. Calvert, your business is important to us. And you can rest assured that what we’re going to do is when the time comes we’re going to talk to the developer and we’re going to make sure that the City and the developer and the businesspeople…
Mr. Calvert – The City should have been doing that already.
Mr. Orazietti – Well we are doing it already. Unfortunately we’re not there yet and when we are going to be there, you’re going to be in the process. We’re not going to leave anybody out.
Mr. Calvert – Well we’re going to be put out. Because we’re going to be the ones to get our building stolen from us and moved out of town.
Mr. Orazietti – We’ll just take a look and see what happens down the future Mr. Calvert.
Mayor Garofalo – Alright – any further?
Mr. Misciewicz – Yes just one more. As it sounds now you’re just negotiating for that one section of property…
Mayor Garofalo – No. We’ve already negotiated and we have an agreement.
Mr. Misciewicz – For…?
Mayor Garofalo – That they’re the developer and that it’s a 270-apartment project.
Mr. Misciewicz – Is there going to be anything else proposed besides apartments?
Mayor Garofalo – I have asked the – based on the input they’re revising a lot of the things based on the input from the public and based on the input that I asked them to look at based on further input from the public, which there was a desire to include a retail component to it. I asked the developer to look at that, to consider it, and to you know consider looking at the project to include retail as part of this.
Mr. Milardo – If it’s already part of the demolition…
Mayor Garofalo – Mr. Milardo – please. Thank you very much.
Mr. Misciewicz – So is it…
Mayor Garofalo – I asked them and they are – it’s my hope that they will come back and I think that they were open to the idea and I think that they will do it. And I also asked them to make sure that they did include appropriate and adequate parking to cover the whole development project. Something we are suggesting and is being considered very diligently by the Planning & Zoning Commission but it’s in the developer’s interests and everybody’s interests here to make sure that the parking is adequate. Because one of the biggest problems down there is the parking. And we’ve met with each of the business owners in the district and we want to work with everybody there to accommodate, as best we can, their needs individually and collectively for the whole City. And we’re committed to that as we have been committed to it from day one, which is why 284 Main Street is not in the zone. Because we operated under a certain set of assumptions five years ago when we started this process. Those are changing based on just the physical deterioration of some of the buildings there.
Mr. Misciewicz – Okay. I just want to state though I am proud of Derby. And I just don’t want Derby to short sell itself. If you were in New Haven all their redevelopment seems to require retail and apartment buildings. They don’t let any developers just come and say we’re going to just put up apartments and that’s it. All the Ninth Square and everything it was a combined retail/apartment deal. And it was because the City stood up and said that’s what we want, that’s what we require and I feel that Derby should do the same with this developer too.
Mayor Garofalo – Which is why I asked them to consider that.
Delphine Krezel, 33 Paugasset Road, Derby, CT – Could you please tell me what the date was when the Preferred Developer Agreement was signed?
Atty. Buturla – October 4th.
Ms. Krezel – October 4th? Thanks. I know you had a roll call – are there any representatives or is Mr. Ceruzzi here tonight?
Mayor Garofalo – No.
Ms. Krezel – No representatives at all?
Mayor Garofalo – No.
Ms. Krezel – Just asking. Once this project is finished hopefully June 30, 2007 would Ceruzzi as the developer then be the land – I’m using that (inaudible)…
Atty. Buturla – No – let me interrupt you for a second because I’m thinking due diligence period, which is October 4th – it was August 4th. I’m sorry about that.
Ms. Krezel – Okay August 4th. With Ceruzzi as the developer when this project is finished would they be the landlords of the property?
Atty. Buturla – When the project is finished the Ceruzzi organization would own the property. They would own the property – the issue is whether they would in turn sell portions of it, sell units – I mean those are determinations that they would make at that point.
Ms. Krezel – I’m using the word landlord as something we could all understand.
Atty. Buturla – It would be the property owners. (Inaudible) Preferred Developer – that’s exactly right.
Ms. Krezel – Now this is Ceruzzi II, LLC?
Atty. Buturla – Ceruzzi Derby Redevelopment, LLC.
Ms. Krezel – Okay. Now that particular LLC, Ceruzzi, can we obtain lists of other properties where they are currently landlords?
Atty. Buturla – The Ceruzzi Organization and the City did a lot of work on this a number of years ago, has done substantial work in a variety of municipalities including they had – just off the top of my head they had a major project in downtown Fairfield. My recollection is you know where Borders Books is?
Ms. Krezel – No.
Atty. Buturla – Well in the center of Fairfield there’s a major retail area where the old Fairfield Store used to be…
Mayor Garofalo – We’ll note your question and ask them when they come to the next meeting.
Ms. Krezel – Well that’s why I asked about representatives because I would like to obtain a list of their current properties where they’re let’s call them landlords.
Atty. Buturla – Sure.
Ms. Krezel – Okay. Let’s see – the phrase was used tonight – we’re talking about Phase I A?
Atty. Buturla – Let me just say that this is how it is defined in the agreement – Phase I A. The reason it’s defined like that at one time the redevelopment project was going to be much larger in downtown Derby and go to the other side of Caroline Street. So that other side of Caroline Street was designated as Phase I B. We have no plans at this time to proceed with I B.
Ms. Krezel – So it’s not Phase I, Phase II as it used to be called?
Atty. Buturla – It was also Phase I – the downtown area was always Phase I. Phase II dealt with some other City-owned property along the river and perhaps the D.O.T. parcel.
Ms. Krezel – Okay, thank you. And just – it would be Planning & Zoning’s public meetings or Planning & Zoning or is it the Redevelopment or the public would have the most opportunities to…
Atty. Buturla – There will be many public meetings. There’ll be public meetings with the Board of Aldermen. There’ll be public meetings with this agency, the Redevelopment Agency; there’ll be public meetings with Planning & Zoning. There’ll be a lot of meetings.
Ms. Krezel – I’m asking as to in what part once we see a concept architectural (inaudible) could the public weigh in and have some effect on…
Atty. Buturla – I think the best place to probably weigh in – and I’m not giving legal advice – speaking for the City I would think the best place to weigh in on that sort of thing would be the Planning & Zoning Commission.
Ms. Krezel – Planning & Zoning, okay. And just for the record, plus my own personal feelings, we were talking about the I guess it’s said as part of the agreement 270 apartments?
Atty. Buturla – Yes.
Ms. Krezel – Okay. So that’s part of the agreement you signed off on – that’s a given.
Atty. Buturla – Yes.
Ms. Krezel – My feeling is after contemplation that we should be looking at these as senior apartments. Apartments for seniors for several reasons. We have a lot of elderly senior homeowners in Derby who due to family circumstances are now left in a family home that they can’t keep up but they don’t want to move – this is where their home is – their family, friends, Church, etc…If we could have senior apartments that were something that they would be willing to move into we could keep them in the community. They could sell their homes on the other hand to families, etc…Also, they tend to, I have my Mom living with me, they tend not to drive as much or have as many cars as families who would be moving in. That’s another aspect – parking would be lessened. They, I think, have a great deal of personal pride in upkeep and having these as senior apartments they would certainly do their best to keep them looking extremely presentable for our Main Street – both outside and inside – they tend to do that, I know they do that. And as far as the first level retail if you think the entire concept of having these 270 apartments as senior living housing really there’s a lot of good fits to it including some of the current proprietors and businesses that would be taken over to fit in such as the old fashioned Mom & Pop grocery store, dentists, doctors, optometrists, the old style five and ten’s like we used to have, florists, drug store branches, small clothing stores, etc…travel agencies. All small businesses that could fit into the first level – it would certainly be usable for the general public of Derby, but would be great for the City since living in this complex they would just come downstairs, go up and down a few blocks do their business, the Senior Center is across the street – Sterling Opera House is a block up – it would just be a beautiful mix. That’s just my thoughts. Thank you.
Leo Moscato, Jr., 275 Main Street, Derby, CT – In light of the fact that now we are in litigation with Standard Demolition for downtown and that area will that impede our process for redevelopment?
Mayor Garofalo – No.
Atty. Buturla – No.
Mr. Moscato – Thank you.
Mayor Garofalo – Anybody else from the public?
Donald Yocher, 12 Ashford Terrace, Derby, CT – I just want to understand how much land you’re taking. You said from Caroline Street west – is that all the way to the corner – what’s that Bridge Street?
Mayor Garofalo – Derby/Shelton Bridge.
Atty. Buturla – The City already owns – well I guess the City owns from Hubbell’s to Bridge Street.
Mr. Yocher – Owns…?
Atty. Buturla – The City presently owns today, as we sit here today, owns the Hubbell property to the corner. If you go from the Hubbell property to Caroline Street, it would be those privately owned properties within that zone that the developer would hope to acquire or that the City may ultimately have to utilize eminent domain to acquire. So you’re talking about a number of private properties within that area. The City also owns substantial property within that area presently.
Mr. Yocher – Does the City own those buildings that are still up by the billiard parlor?
Atty. Buturla – Some of them.
Mayor Garofalo – The one to the right of the billiard parlor and actually the ones to the left – from the billiard parlor to the jewelry store. And then after the jewelry store to the buildings end. The only ones we don’t own on there are the billiards, the jewelry store and the – Mr. Yacobacci what’s the number of your building?
Mr. Yacobacci – 174 – 176.
Mayor Garofalo – That one. Those three. In terms of the ones on Main Street itself in the zone.
Mr. Yocher – And the developer wants where Calvert Safe & Lock is?
Mayor Garofalo – That’s part of the zone as well. All the way down Caroline Street to the railroad tracks.
Mr. Yocher – So they want Scarpa Electric and the garden center – Derby Garden Center – all that is all going to be knocked down and you’re going to develop from there all the way to Bridge Street?
Mayor Garofalo – That’s the zone that we’re talking about.
Mr. Yocher – So Jacob’s Metal and Housatonic Lumber are going to stay? That property is not going to be touched?
Mayor Garofalo – They’re not part of the zone.
Dominick Thomas, Esq. – Just a quick question. Is the Greenway part of the development zone 1 a and (inaudible).
Atty. Buturla – The Greenway won’t be touched.
Atty. Thomas – It won’t be? It’s not in the zone?
Atty. Buturla – I think a Greenway easement is within the zone now. But the Greenway…
Atty. Thomas – (Inaudible) expected to make any proposals for developing the Greenway as it goes the zone or is that going to remain the City’s responsibility?
Mayor Garofalo – The development of it is the City’s. That’s already out to bid – that project has already been approved and is moving forward. Mr. Monahan.
John Monahan – I don’t hear very well so I would suggest that we use that podium over there for future meetings and give the speakers a microphone or something so we can hear them. I’m only speaking for myself (inaudible) I couldn’t hear you.
Mayor Garofalo – Anybody else that did not speak who would like to address the board. Hearing none…
PUBLIC PORTION CLOSED
Mr. Estwan asked the date of the next meeting? Mayor Garofalo said it is his intention to coordinate with Mr. Ceruzzi and set up a special meeting as soon as possible.
Without objection, the meeting adjourned at 7:49 p.m.
A TAPE RECORDING OF THIS MEETING IS ON FILE IN THE CITY CLERK’S OFFICE.