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Cranbury Residents Cheer Law Protecting Open Space In Norwalk

State Sen. Bob Duff
State Sen. Bob Duff Photo Credit:

NORWALK, Conn. -- Cranbury residents who oppose a 15-home development proposed for the historic White Barn Property cheered a new state law and called on developer Special Properties II, LLC to revise its plans to comply with the law, according to a press release.

The law, sponsored by state Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff passed and was signed by Gov. Daniel Malloy, states developers seeking to build projects under “conservation development” rules cannot use existing state-funded conservation land to justify higher density developments, according to a press release.

In a conservation development, developers are permitted to build higher density cluster houses in exchange for setting aside a portion of the land as open space, according to a press release.

“Senator Duff’s new legislation is an important first step toward keeping developers from using protected land in density calculations. It’s all about protecting taxpayer investments and preserving the spirit of conservation. The new legislation is important because it focuses directly and concisely on a loophole that needs to be closed, one that could allow developers to profit by compromising protected lands,” said Celia Maddox, spokesperson for Save Cranbury, in a press release.

The current 15-home proposal still uses half an acre of taxpayer-funded conservation land in its density calculation.

"Save Cranbury calls on the developer to comply with the spirit and the letter of Sen. Duff's open space law. Come back with a less invasive plan that doesn't count half an acre of taxpayer-funded open space as a justification for building more homes than would otherwise be possible. Propose a new plan that respects the taxpayer's $700,000 investment in the White Barn Preserve," Maddox said in a press release.

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