Spending time each summer on the waters of Echo Bay, I recall watching as the structure that was to become the Huguenot Hills development was built. Driving past I recall being amazed how the structure appeared to take up almost every inch of the parcel of land on which it was built. As it was being finished, I noticed how the sidewalk appeared to be overly narrow and the windows of the units facing Main Street were almost touching the wires of the utility poles in front of the building.
A few weeks ago a reader and area resident raised the issue of Huguenot Hills and asked me if I have noticed anything unusual about the building. I mentioned the narrow sidewalks, the utility poles and how it seems like the building covered every inch of the parcel of land. He smiled and suggested that next time I go by that I look more closely…and look up. With that he walked away.
Intrigued, I made a beeline to the building the next day. I looked and looked and looked but could not figure out what he was talking about it. I gave up and got back in my car to drive away, heading North on Main Street. It was then, taking one last look, that I saw it and suddenly realized it was the most odd thing about this very odd building.
If you are standing on the Lispenard Avenue side of the building you cannot really notice at all — that was my mistake. You need to look at the building from the other side, over near Le Fevres Lane, the road that leads out to Five Island Park at which point the problem because obvious.
Can you see it?
See if this helps…
I have always wondered about this building but this is quite amazing. Apparently during a heavy rain, the roof looks like Niagara Falls to the extent the sidewalk becomes difficult to navigate and water comes down so hard it splashes the windows of oncoming drivers so that even driving past the building is a hazard.
The New Rochelle Property Portal says the building is owned by Huguenot Hills Development Corp. so I need to track them down and ask some questions. Oddly, the property portal does not have an image of the Assessment Card for 80 Old Boston Post Road so I need to get through FOIL (I made a FOIL request about all of this yesterday).
According to the BlockShopper.com web site, the building is condos so there ought to be a Huguenot Hills Condominium Association, there are also business operating out of the retail storefronts.
It is always difficult to say who owns a particular utility pole so I will need to chase down Con Ed, Verizon and maybe even Cablevision.
There are sure to be many other questions about the building but the main ones are how did this building ever get a Certificate of Occupancy with such a blatant (and dangerous) violation, what other odd variances were given (or not given), and what sort of legal liability exists for those involved in developing the property originally and those who own it now or do business there and, of course, to the taxpayers of New Rochelle who will be on the hook in any litigation against the City of New Rochelle.
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Let’s mark this one “developing….”