Wednesday, April 11, 2007 5:30 PM City Hall Albany Common Council Chambers 2d floor
Hon Chair and Members
Albany City BZA
This statement is in OPPOSITION to the application for a drive up bank window for the Trustco Bank now under construction at Crestwood Plaza, Whitehall Rd at Picotte Dr Albany.
On behalf of the homeowners and residents of this R-1B Single Family Residential neighborhood, I ask that
you DENY this application.
The Crestwood Plaza parking lot is small. A drive up window and lanes would take away more parking spaces and present a hazard to pedestrians on the sidewalk, as well as those parking in the lot. Seniors residing in St Sophia's and Holy Wisdom Apartments walk across the street to the plaza to reach the Crestwood Pharmacy, Spinners and other shops. Overflow parking from the smaller plaza parking lot would generate more on street parking on Picotte Dr and John David Lane.
A drive up window would serve as a magnet for increased speeding traffic , in and around, the plaza, and on
tributary neighborhood residential streets leading to the plaza, including: S. Manning Blvd, John David and Gingerbread Lanes, Picotte Dr, Hackett Blvd, Whitehall Rd, Hurst Ave, Collins Pl, Ferndale St, Hopewell St
Whitehall Rd, New Scotland Ave, Krum Kill Rd, Buckingham Dr, Westford St
Many of the above streets are already over run by speeding traffic, trying to find ways around morning and evening rush hour congestion on New Scotland Ave, Buckingham Dr, Krum Kill Rd, Whitehall Rd and South Manning Blvd, as well as Hackett Blvd.
A drive up window would draw bank patrons from St Peter's, The CP Center and medical facilities nearby, as well as from the wider surrounding neighborhoods. Many of these drivers would be on short breaks and in a hurry to conduct their bank business at a drive in window. Thus, resulting in more speeding traffic and more accidents as impatient drivers drive alternative neighborhood streets in an effort to avoid congestion from more traffic.
More speeding traffic and associated congestion, noise, litter and vehicle emissions, will only erode the residential integrity, quality of life ,and city property tax base in this R IB Single Family neighborhood.
A drive up bank window would pose particular problems after dark. Car headlights would shine in the windows
of the single family homes on Westford St bordering the plaza parking lot.
A drive up window and ATM would serve as an attraction to muggers and robbers. Check police records and you will find that the New Scotland Ave Key ,and former Trustco Bank branches and ATM at Key were robbed many times, in recent years. Included among the robbers were transient residents from nearby apartments.
In sum, in the interest of maintaining and improving the neighborhood residential integrity, quality of life, and city property tax base the drive up bank window application for Crestwood Plaza should be DENIED.
Joseph P Sullivan, President
Buckingham Pond/Crestwood NA