By Gwendolyn Craig
The board met virtually Thursday morning and approved the project unanimously with one recusal from absent board member Art Lussi.
The three-story building will house up to 71 employees, who are currently working out of the Olympic Center in downtown Lake Placid. The Olympic Center is undergoing renovations for the 2023 World University Games, and ORDA is looking to move its administrative offices out of that building and into the new one.
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The building footprint will be around 9,260 square feet with all three floors totaling 29,000 square feet. The building will be just under 50 feet tall. Contractors will install a parking area, installation for utilities, exterior lighting, stormwater management and landscaping. The main driveway will extend out to Church Street, though a back driveway will also extend out to Old Military Road.
APA staff did not have any resource impact concerns about the project, which is located within hamlet where development projects are encouraged.
Two nearby residents wrote the APA during the project’s pubic comment period, concerned about stormwater runoff, the impact of increased traffic and visibility of the new building. The LA Group, a landscaping and engineering firm representing ORDA, wrote in response that stormwater runoff control measures will be installed. There were none before when the site was used as a hospital. Traffic is also expected to be at the same amount as when the site was used as a hospital. The LA Group also said the office building should not be visible from the residences of those who wrote the letters. Ariel Lynch, an APA staff member, said the office building will be visible from parts of Church Street.
Mark Hall, an APA board member, asked why ORDA was not building directly within the footprint of the old hospital. Lynch said with the 2023 World University Games approaching, waiting for the demolition would set construction back about two-to-three months.
The golden yellow color of the building had some board members concerned. Zoe Smith, an APA board member, asked why that color was chosen considering many of the buildings APA reviews in the park have a “colors within a natural palate … darker browns and greens.”
Lynch confirmed with the applicant that the artistic renderings made the building look more yellow and that it will actually be a brown to terracotta color.
The APA’s regulatory committee first passed the permit for the new building, followed by the full board. The board did not conduct any other business.
Projects up for comment
Read about current projects before the APA that are open to public comment