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damus

PROPOSED: Byron Brook Country Club

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http://www.norwichbulletin.com/apps/pbcs.d.../605280338/1002

Details of a Byron Brook Country Club Development in Occum will be announced in a 10:30 a.m. news conference Wednesday at City Hall, according to spokesman Brian McCallen of the David Pearson Associates public relations firm.

The David Pearson Associates Web site describes the project as a "planned golf community in the rolling New England countryside. Championship golf course designed by Jim Fazio, clubhouse, townhouses and villas are expected to open in late 2006."

Fazio is a world-renowned golf course designer, who has done courses in the U.S., Japan, Spain, Italy and the Caribbean Islands.

McCallen and others involved in the project would not give any details about the location or specifics of the country club development, but in Occum, the Tarryk farm is one of the largest remaining open land spaces. Developers have floated proposals for industrial, housing or golf community use of the property for more than a decade.

Of all uses for one of the last large tracts of open space in town, I think something else would have been more desirable. How many golf courses does a region need? The Pequots have been trying to lure a PGA event to their new golf course. This is going to become the region where you can't go ten minutes in any direction without coming across another golf course.

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This is going to become the region where you can't go ten minutes in any direction without coming across another golf course.

It can't be much worse than where I live in Danbury where I can think 9 golf courses within 15 minutes of my house.

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Bulletin - Occum Project Historic

Bulletin - Old guy who pretends to be Mayor weighs in

Bulletin - Residents are Wary of New Development

Bulletin - Golf Course Would be of Tournament Caliber

In depth NL Day article (reg. required after first 24 hours)

With the Pequots' Lake of Isles course already in place, what makes these people think they're more likely to get a PGA event? Foxwoods will have had a 5 year or so head start, plus they have facilities that I'm sure the PGA wouldn't mind staying at.

Is this good for the town or is this the beginning of Norwich becoming the Fairfield of a Utopia-ized NL county? Norwich definately needs the tax money, and this will have a minimal impact on traffic, the environment, etc. There is another farm directly across the highway from this site and a few more here and there. I hope if Norwich takes the money from this one it spends the money wisely by developing and implementing a long term strategy for growth. If the light rail line from NL to Worcester would not go through this area, Norwich should seriously consider creating a spur to go out this way. Not every development in the world is a getaway for the rich, in this case with a few hundred condos affordable to the upper middle class, requiring few if any traffic upgrades.

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This sounds like a great project. Norwich will be the next hottest city in CT, I can see it already. It will be unrecognizable and bustling, like in it's heyday. I'm pretty excited for you guys truth be told.

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This sounds like a great project. Norwich will be the next hottest city in CT, I can see it already. It will be unrecognizable and bustling, like in it's heyday. I'm pretty excited for you guys truth be told.

I am concerned about something. Do we have anyone with any sense of how to responsibly manage this growth in power right now? I'm afraid people will see things only in the sense of how much money it will add to the tax base without putting much thought into what the city will be like 50 years down the road as a result of these policies. We definately need this, and it seems to be great to me at the moment, but if this is the type of development that will dominate the city in years to come then I'm concerned.

The routes 12/32 corridors leading to downtown should definately be built up into medium density mixed use developments possibly with trolleys like what they have in Portland, Oregon even to the point where from Utopia to downtown Norwich back to the Sun is a free ride. I think the area up there, if no urban mixed use developments could get put in, should be more of a business park with commuter rail stops and shuttles between the workplaces and the stops. This could be taken as an opportunity to create a city using the ideals of New Urbanism, not the completely autocentric nature that dominated the growth of cities like Los Angeles.

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I hope norwich grows smartly and is able to balance respect for the past with a vision for the future. I really hope we see a vibrant arts and entertainment scene in Norwich proper. I hope that some companies, maybe related to entertainment or tourism do decide to set up corporate headquarters in the city. There is so much potential, and you are correct that this potential could be wasted by going in the wrong direction. I hope you stay in the area and do what you can do to keep them on track.

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This would have been a perfect area to create a new exit on 395 with frontage roads leading to a business park, that way the country roads in the area would not be affected. I have seen the plans for the country club, it is a massive development to say the least. Creating a new business park (that wasn't dominated by condos) would have made more economic sense to me, but you take what you can get in Norwich, hopefully Occum residents won't moan and complain about it. This city shoots itself in the foot more often than not.

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This would have been a perfect area to create a new exit on 395 with frontage roads leading to a business park, that way the country roads in the area would not be affected. I have seen the plans for the country club, it is a massive development to say the least. Creating a new business park (that wasn't dominated by condos) would have made more economic sense to me, but you take what you can get in Norwich, hopefully Occum residents won't moan and complain about it. This city shoots itself in the foot more often than not.

Any idea how many acres the other farm(s) in the area take up? One of my good friends lives in the neighborhood across from this proposed development, but I really don't venture out into that area past that. Norwich needs the tax revenue from this, but considering they'll be getting money (albeit with tons of headaches) from Utopia when they develop the 80 acres, they need to be patient.

I'm afraid of what our region is going to become... even The New London Day, the "smart" newspaper, editoralized earlier the need for more roads, but did not mention mass transit one bit. This is the time to plan the light rail lines.

I mentioned a potential streetcar loop from Utopia to downtown to Mohegan Sun and back, and think that it would be great for the city if they build it and use it as a "free" line. Utopia and Sun workers will be able to live in apartments and houses near the corridor and commute for free; little attractions like the Heritage Museum (pipe dream right now) would siphon visitors off the big attractions, and hotels and condos would pop up along with hopefully a vibrant retail district along the entire corridor.... the time is now.

I'm against Utopia, but if it's coming I'll support developing the area so it can be an example of how to do things right and not the way Orlando, Atlanta, Los Angeles and other recently developed cities were.

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Developers to build access road from exit 83

The two Long Island-based developers, Robert Arnone and Joseph Manzi, as principals of M&A Holdings LLC, hope to build a three-quarter mile connector road from Route 97 near Exit 83 at Interstate 395 to Canterbury Turnpike. The road would connect to existing dead-end streets

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Day - Plans for Occum Road Submitted

The approximately 4,000-foot long road would connect the dead-end of Bromley Lane off Canterbury Turnpike to the dead-end of School Avenue in the heart of the Occum village. The developers, Joseph G. Manzi and Robert J. Arnone also are the principals in a $200 million proposed Byron Brook Country Club centered at the former Tarryk Farm. The Bromley Lane end of the new road would intersect with Canterbury Turnpike directly across from the proposed site of the country club.

M&A already have purchased four of the six properties needed for the road this week in anticipation that the project would meet city approval. The group submitted applications for wetlands permits late Thursday. Project attorney Glenn Carberry said they hope to receive city approvals by late summer.

...

(Norwich Planning Director Peter) Davis was impressed that the developers found a route for the road that has a minimal impact on wetlands. Only 2,300 square feet of wetlands would be disturbed for the stream crossing, far below the minimum of 5,000 square feet of disturbance that would trigger a review by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

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Occum road approval opens commercial prospects

Robert Arnone and Joseph Manzi, Long Island-based principals of both Byron Brook and M&A Holdings, LLC, plan to build a three-quarter mile connector road from Route 97 near Interstate 395 at Exit 83 to Canterbury Turnpike. The road will connect two dead end streets: School Avenue and Bromley Lane.

My guess for what will wind up going in the 70 acres: Shopping center, possibly upscale or outlet type, probably big box.. either way sprawleriffic

My hope: corporate campus, or even a big box distribution center, to diversify the economy which is heavily reliant on the hospitality industry

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Here's an update to the last post... whenever something does happen there is when I guess I'll start the separate thread. This does tie into Byron Brook as the creation of an access road.

Bulletin - Road to Boost Occum (updated)

Robert Arnone and Joseph Manzi, Long Island-based principals of both Byron Brook and M&A Holdings LLC, have said their plans will invigorate the Occum section of Norwich. Planning Director Peter Davis called the road plan "one of the most significant projects in Norwich."

Davis pointed to the city's lack of commercial land and said an additional 60 to 70 acres of such land would give a much-needed boost to the tax base. He said the commercial parcels created could accommodate small anchor chain stores or restaurants, such as Target, Dicks Sporting Goods or Olive Garden.

Either I'm psychic or these guys are predictably stupid (shaking head). Why not TRY to attract a corporate office. In this area the belief seems to be that building big boxes whereever and whenever possible is a wonderful idea. I could see them being realistic and going with the strategy of building big box if they can't find something else within a set amount of time... but what the hell. Right now there are big box plazas going up in Montville, Lisbon (across from Lisbon Landing), Killingly... with the towns of Plainfield and Griswold looking to get into the big box business. (shakes head again)

on edit: here comes an email to our "city planner" over this. I fully expect this not to be responded to.

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Well.. I'm shocked. I got a response from someone... This is from the planning director in Norwich

Thanks for your e-mail and suggestions. What I thought I said to the paper was that the sites would not support big box development, but smaller commercial ventures such as a Target, etc. Target and similar stores are not considered big box, believe it or not. We are, as you have suggested, envisioning a mix of uses, retail, office, customer service, etc (maybe even a small hotel). In the end, I think the market will drive what happens on the parcels. The 65-70 acres are not contiguous and are all encumbered by wetland resourses to some degree. The majority of the development parcels will be of limited size.

I agree that we have to diversify our economy regionally and build our commercial tax base. I think we have about hit the limit on housing in Norwich. Time for some of the suburbs surrounding us to step up to the plate...

Can anyone explain to me how Target is not considered "big box"?

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Well.. I'm shocked. I got a response from someone... This is from the planning director in Norwich

Thanks for your e-mail and suggestions. What I thought I said to the paper was that the sites would not support big box development, but smaller commercial ventures such as a Target, etc. Target and similar stores are not considered big box, believe it or not. We are, as you have suggested, envisioning a mix of uses, retail, office, customer service, etc (maybe even a small hotel). In the end, I think the market will drive what happens on the parcels. The 65-70 acres are not contiguous and are all encumbered by wetland resourses to some degree. The majority of the development parcels will be of limited size.

I agree that we have to diversify our economy regionally and build our commercial tax base. I think we have about hit the limit on housing in Norwich. Time for some of the suburbs surrounding us to step up to the plate...

Can anyone explain to me how Target is not considered "big box"?

Becuase they often design urban stores, and I think even some "green" ones. Big Box is a suburban model, in an urban area the design would not be considered big box if it's built multi storied with a parking garage, like the one I used to frequent in Buckhead, Atlanta.

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I've been to that Target, right by the malls up there, I was amazed that it wasn't surrounded by a sea of asphalt. As to the new road in Norwich, I hope they don't give any tax breaks to any business that moves in there. Everything that goes up around here comes with tax breaks, we need the tax money to offset the high property taxes. As long as they don't put in more condos.........

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Bulletin Editorial - Connector road will prove boon to Occum, city

But the 70 acres in Occum -- close off the highway, close to upscale homeowners -- opens new doors to major retail.

It would not be unrealistic to think of the area as not just a possible complement to the nearby Lisbon Landing, but a major entity on its own. Think of the Target/Dick's/Best Buy area near the Crystal Mall in Waterford.

Bill Sweeney, the former city planner who works with the law firm representing the Byron Brook developers, said this week the city has wanted for decades to make that Occum land viable. The fact private money will fund the road and utilities adds to the attractiveness.

Well.. At least this is the idiotic local paper's editorial.. For those unfamiliar with the area... the Target/Dick's/Best Buy area of Waterford is what you would call Big Box seas of parking so people can drive from box to box instead of walking around...

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Occum has huge potential, but I wouldn't exactly call the area upscale at all. The housing stock is run down, up on Canterbury Tpke there are nice homes, but the village of Occum itself is pretty shabby at this point. Too bad we couldn't level West Main St and rebuild with stores fronting the street, and parking hidden behind.

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