Hudson gets a wider slice of Sandy Beach
PHOTO BY JAMES ARMSTRONG
Following public feedback after a public presentation in February, negotiations with the Pine Beach Project developer will a larger area of Hudson’s iconic Sandy Beach preserved for public use.
The Hudson Sandy Beach Municipal Project has been altered in size as Hudson Director General, Jean-Pierre Roy announced Tuesday, April 11.
“We have been able to increase the size of Sandy Beach,” said Roy in an interview, explaining the depth of the beach has been enlarged from 20 metres to 30 metres and that buildings originally proposed to be built close to the beach have been moved back.
According to the DG, a meeting was held between the town and the owner of the Pine Beach Development Project following the public presentation by the developer on February 16 of this year. “We listened to the citizens’ comments and suggestions following that presentation,” said Roy.
Defining Sandy Beach and Pine Beach
In documentation supplied by the Town, the ‘Sandy Beach Municipal Project’ is described as the, “implementation of an organized beach mainly accessible to Hudsonites, a nature preserve, trails, streets, and public infrastructure at the expense of the developer, all in accordance with the respect of both the environmental and municipal criteria.”
The ‘Pine Beach Development Project’ refers to the integrated residential project proposed by the company Nicanco Holdings Inc. owned by Hans-Karl Muehleg.
Number of units and beach access
Roy said the developer agreed to reduce the number units from 306 to 256. Revision of the plan includes two new servitudes providing access to the beach within the axis for private driveways. Roy said that in total, there will be five access points to the beach.
Possible purchase of Sandy Beach
Hudson residents have asked if it is possible for the town to purchase the area known as Sandy Beach and the surrounding forest from the developer and preserve it as parkland. Resident Richard Grinnell presented a petition to council during the Monday, April 3 council meeting asking that a town-wide referendum be held on the question. The owner of the property has responded to the town in a letter dated April 6, 2017, that it “does not wish to sell the Sandy Beach site in part or in whole. If this had been its goal, it would have done so long ago.” The letter continues with the statement that the developer firmly intends to continue with the Pine Beach Project.
Reaction against the project
In an interview Wednesday, April 19, Grinnell pointed out that not everyone in Hudson is in agreement with the Pine Beach development. Grinnell said that he wasn’t aware of all the details of the announcement. “I’m not anti-development,” he said adding that there are many people who have a sincere desire to preserve the area and that isn’t being recognized by the town officials. He said that in the case of servitudes, the developer continues to own the property. He also indicated that he is not ready to give up on his project to preserve the property.