Village of Florida Closes Public Hearing  on Village Drive Apartment Project

News & Updates

By A.J. Arias


   The Village of Florida Board of Trustees voted to close the public hearing on Local Law 6 of 2020 on Wed., Aug. 12. The new local law would permit a zoning change to a lot behind the Saab dealership on Village Dr. to be a mixed-use zone and would be an initial step for a project in development by builder Robert Knebel. 

   The project, which is still in its planning stages, is currently proposed to have 37 apartment units, with 21 one-bedroom apartments and 16 being multiple bedrooms on its upper level. On the lower level, Knebel has promised to have professional offices including a desire to have a doctor’s office.

The public hearing has been open since July’s regular meeting and received multiple complaints and concerns regarding the project. At this month’s meeting, Knebel gave a more detailed proposal of the project in hopes of answering questions residents had regarding the project. 

   The more detailed proposal showed plans for sound buffers, two 66-lot parking lots, plans for drainage, as well entrance and exit plans into the property. It was noted by Village Attorney Elizabeth Cassidy that all plans being showed are only preliminary, as the Village’s planning board had not yet approved the plans. 

   If the Village Board of Trustees passes the local law and the proper zoning is in place that is when the project will go to the Planning Board for approval. The Planning Board will then address many of the additional concerns residents have regarding the project including traffic, and the project’s environmental impact. 

   Knebel additionally promised that residents of the new development would need high credit scores to live in the units in hopes of quelling another concern from residents about the type of people that will be coming into the Village. Knebel has said he wants the project to be for young professionals who can’t quite afford a house yet and for older residents looking to downsize but who would like to remain in the Village. 

   Residents who would still like to add their comments regarding the Village Drive Project can still submit their written comments to the Village Board up until Wed., Aug. 26. 

Village Elections

  Village Elections for the Village of Florida are set to take place in-person on Tues., Sept. 15 from 12 noon to 9 p.m. at the Florida Senior Center. Absentee Ballots are available as well. 

Next Meeting

  The next meeting will be held on Wed., Sept.  9 at 7 p.m. in the Village Hall, located at 33 S. Main St. in Florida, NY.

Photo by A.J. Arias

 Builder Robert Knebel gives a presentation to the Florida Board of Trustees & attendees of the Board’s monthly meeting on his planned project for Village Drive.

Photo by A.J. Arias

The Florida Board of Trustees sit for their monthly meeting via Zoom on Wed., Aug. 12 at Village Hall. 


1 thought on “Village of Florida Closes Public Hearing  on Village Drive Apartment Project

  1. There is a large number of Village residents that are against this project and the zone change. Small town politics is showing its true colors. There is a conflict of interest with current board members and Mr. Knebal. Currently there are petitions with over 400 signatures showing a large number of residents AGAINST this zone change and Mr. Kneibal’s project.

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