Planning Board receives submission
By Liz Schevtchuk Armstrong
Philipstown vehicles in need of “suds and scrubs” might soon enjoy more cleanup opportunities close to home: Philipstown’s Planning Board last week received an initial submission from a business seeking to convert a trucking facility in Garrison to a car wash.
The applicant, RDR Equities LLC, seeks to convert the building at 1510 Route 9, near the intersection with Route 403, to Acme Suds & Scrubs car wash, which would be open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., eventually employ about 10 workers, and accommodate only cars — no buses or large trucks.
Planning Board members began reviewing the project at their April 10 meeting, which also drew a group of the site’s neighbors, anxious to make comments. The board did not allow them to do so, explaining that the time for public remarks still lies ahead. “This is preliminary,” Chairman Anthony D. Merante said. “We have to get it in the pipeline before we take public comments.” In a follow-up with Philipstown.info/The Paper, he later characterized April 10 as a night when the board “just listened to a preliminary pitch.”
According to application materials RDR filed with the board, anticipated work on the site includes renovating the existing metal building, adding an “automatic car wash tunnel,” getting rid of a residential section, creating an automotive detailing area, and installing new signs outside. The property lies in the Highway-Commercial Zoning District but also falls into the zoning Regional Aquifer Overlay District. Planning Board consulting planner Susan Jainchill noted in a memo that Annsville Creek crosses the property and on April 10 water inspired some of the board’s questions — such as an inquiry on the disposition of used car wash water.
RDR’s representative Ron Wegner, of Cronin Engineering, a Cortlandt Manor firm, said the car wash “will have a reclamation system” for the dirty water. “We’re looking at doing a 100 percent recycle,” he said.
Questions also arose about the car wash’s possible impact on traffic, since it is near the Appalachian Market and gas station at the junction of Routes 9 and 403.
Wegner assured the board that overall “we are not proposing any great changes” to 1510 Route 9.
The Planning Board scheduled an upcoming visit to the property to evaluate environmental and other potential side-effects of the car wash operation. The board also referred the project to the Philipstown Conservation Board, which has jurisdiction over wetlands matters, and to Putnam County, a routine move.
Photos by L.S. Armstrong