Tall apartment building Corbin Post Baywater 9-7-16

Baywater Corbin Announces It’s Filed a New Proposal for Downtown Darien Project

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Baywater Corbin Partners has reapplied for zoning approval to redevelop the Corbin Drive/Post Road/I-95 tract of land downtown, this time lowering the proposed height of its tallest building to 69 feet, with five stories. Baywater Corbin announced the new proposal late Thursday afternoon in a news release (full text below). The 69-foot height, according to the announcement, is within what P&Z Commission members have indicated they are comfortable with:
[T]he tallest portion of the largest building proposed is reduced from our initial request of to 93 feet, measured from the first floor of the building, to 69 feet (a reduction of 26 percent). During their deliberations, the P&Z Commission members appeared to be comfortable with a maximum building height ranging from 65 feet to 75 feet. In early September, after the last P&Z Commission discussion of the proposal, Darienite reported that the commissioners said 55 feet was as high as they wanted to go (measured by the midpoint of the roof, as Darien town officials customarily do).

Market Lane 6-1-16

Genovese: P&Z Limit on Corbin/Post Building Heights May Make Project ‘Impossible’

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UPDATE: 4:36 p.m., Wednesday, modified at 10:48 p.m.:

The intention of Planning & Zoning Commission members to limit building heights for the proposed Corbin/Post Road redevelopment “would render it impossible for us to finance the project,” according to a post on the developer’s Facebook page. David Genovese, a partner with Penny Glassmeyer in the Baywater Corbin LLC redevelopment proposal to redevelop the block between Corbin Drive, the Post Road and Interstate 95, confirmed that the statement is on Facebook (it’s been reported by the Darien Times, but Darienite.com can’t find it there). Here’s part of the statement posted Sept. 2 on the Your Downtown Darien Facebook page:
[T]he P&Z Commission appears to be moving in the direction of approving our request for a text amendment with modifications which would render it impossible for us to finance the project. We have explained this to the P&Z Commission. […]

Some of the commissioners appear to be especially focused upon the taller portion of the apartment building at the rear of the site, along I-95.

Market Lane 6-1-16

Building Height Discussed in Last Zone-Change Hearing for Corbin-Post Downtown Redevelopment

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Is five or six stories just too high for a Darien building, even downtown? Or will those buildings loom less over downtown and nearby homes than some fear? Those questions were behind a lot of the discussion Tuesday night at the Planning & Zoning Commission’s last public hearing on a zoning change proposal that would allow higher structures on the triangular site bounded by Corbin Drive, the Post Road and Interstate 95. In a slide presentation from developer David Genovese and his team, the commission saw sketches showing how high the buildings would appear from various angles downtown, some as far away as Darien Library and the intersection of Brookside Road and the Post Road. The commission members also asked questions about how much height was needed for multi-story buildings, how many parking spaces would be provided.

Caps at hearing 6-22-16

Maximum Building Height in Baywater Corbin Proposal Cut from Roughly 95 to 85 Feet

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Building height and concerns about traffic and parking were the objections most discussed at the public hearing Tuesday for the Planning & Zoning Commission at Town Hall Auditorium. But most of the speakers and most of the 90 or so people attending the meeting indicated they were there to support the proposed project and didn’t bring up objections. “This zone change I think would actually do more to preserve the character of Darien,” said Alfred Tibbetts, a former member of the Zoning Board of Appeals. The town has a problem with businesses strung out all along the Post Road, but this project tends to get vehicle traffic off of that road, he said. “At the end of the day, it’s going to be well worth it,” he said, “so please vote this zoning change through.”


Business Owners Give Support for Downtown Redevelopment Plan, Say Darien Needs to Compete

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Some of the support for the massive downtown Darien redevelopment proposal between Corbin Drive, the Post Road and the highway is coming from businesspeople who worry that the downtown businesses district, for whatever reason, may be losing its competitive edge. Whether it’s retail shopping now going on over the Internet or business going to downtown shops in other towns, some business owners told the Planning & Zoning Commission that they’re worried. The P&Z held a public hearing Tuesday on the zoning changes wanted by Baywater Corbin LLC, a partnership of the owners of Baywater Properties and RG Properties. Although the hearing was specifically about particular zoning changes being proposed for the site, the P&Z after a while seemed to give up on the idea of holding speakers to the topic at hand and let them speak in more general terms about their support for the proposed redevelopment. Baywater Corbin launched an effort to get supporters of its proposal to the P&Z hearing, with advertising and emails, and interns from Baywater Properties even handed out blue baseball caps with the logo from the Baywater website, YourDowntownDarien.com, for attendees to show their support.

Corbin Post Road Corner 6-1-16

Only ‘Retail’ Side of Post Office in Latest Downtown Redevelopment Proposal

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The Corbin Drive/Post Road redevelopment proposal would not include the back-office operations of the present Darien Post Office — just the public, front-end “retail” side of it in a 2,500-square-foot space, the Planning & Zoning Commission was told Tuesday. “We’re proposing to eliminate the distribution center for the Post Office, and have that Post Office move that elsewhere,” said David Genovese, principal (with his father, Rocco Genovese) at Baywater Properties, which has partnered with developer Penny Glassmeyer to propose redevelopment of the downtown block between the Post Road, Corbin Drive and Interstate 95. “We would want to include the retail [part of the] Post Office to serve residents in downtown Darien,” he continued. “So we’re proposing a 2,500-square-foot Post Office retail facility, which would be located probably about where it is today.” Genovese has said in the past that fitting in the non-“retail” parts of the Post Office, with space for storage, sorting and parking for delivery vehicles — would be difficult on the site, but if they couldn’t stay downtown, he would try to help find another location for those operations.

Corbin Post Road Illustration 3-30-16

Find Out About the Corbin/Post Rd Downtown Redevelopment Proposal Wednesday at the Library

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Darien Library is hosting an informational meeting Wednesday night, April 6 about the downtown redevelopment proposal along the Post Road and Corbin Drive. David Genovese, principal of Baywater Properties, will present an overview of the proposal, which would transform a large section of downtown. The meeting starts at 7 p.m. 

Here’s an announcement from Darien Library:

David Genovese, founder of Baywater Properties, will present to the public an overview of the downtown Darien redevelopment project proposed by Baywater Properties and its partner, PG Properties.  A full presentation of the project will be given to attendees, with significant time available for questions and comments. The Baywater venture began work on acquiring the properties from Corbin Drive to the Bank of America Building, including the US Post Office at 30 Corbin Drive and 10 Corbin Drive, in 2005. In July of 2015, Baywater presented the initial concept for its redevelopment proposal to a joint meeting of the Planning and Zoning Commission and the Architectural Review Board.  Baywater will soon be filing its next application to the Planning & Zoning Commission, with a goal of attaining all approvals by the end of 2016.