Greenwich Zoning Board To Vote On Synagogue Proposal

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The Greenwich Planning and Zoning Commission must vote on a proposed lot line revision for the proposed site of the Greenwich Reform Synagogue at Tuesday's meeting. Photo Credit: Eric Gendron

GREENWICH, Conn. – The first step toward building a controversial synagogue must be voted on by the Greenwich Planning and Zoning Commission at a meeting Tuesday evening after being delayed twice.

Greenwich Reform Synagogue will bring a proposal for a lot-line revision application after its representatives agreed to allow the commission to delay its vote in November and three weeks ago.

The Planning and Zoning Commission meeting will be held in the Town Hall Meeting Room at 7 p.m. The meeting will include a public hearing.

Greenwich Reform Synagogue is looking to purchase 96 Orchard Road from Lou Caravella and plans to build a 20,000-square-foot facility.

The synagogue sold its Stanwich Road property last year, and its congregants have been meeting at the First Congregational Church.

The commission requested more information from the lawyers representing Greenwich Reform Synagogue and an organization calling itself Cos Cob Residents Fighting For Residential Rights at the Jan. 8 meeting.

Cos Cob residents went to the Nov. 27 meeting prepared to fight the measure after hiring an attorney, Mario F. Coppola of Berchem, Moses and Devlin. Coppola succeeded in delaying the vote for nearly two months.

The synagogue would cause traffic problems and its parking lots would impact nearby wetlands, says the Cos Cob Residents Fighting For Residential Rights.

If the commission were to approve the proposal, the synagogue would still have to go through several more steps before any construction would begin.

The synagogue's lot does not conform to Greenwich zoning laws but is allowed to stay the shape it is because the lines were drawn under previous laws. If the lines were to change, it would negate that exception, Coppola said.

But the subdivision of lot lines was a straightforward matter, Thomas Heagney, a representative for Greenwich Reform Synagogue, told the commission.

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