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River edge plan revived

New version reflects changes in rules, tastes

November 04, 2009
SOUTHBRIDGE — The fact the River's Edge subdivision is before the Planning Board now is symbolically appropriate given the recent passage of Halloween — it's the subdivision that will not die, but isn't alive either.

First approved in the 1980s, the first 1,000 feet or so of its road and the related water and sewer lines were built off Wall Street before "the developer went belly-up," said project designer Michael Loin of Bertin Engineering. Twenty years later, current owners Ken LeBlanc and Don Cournoyer resurrected it, got approval in 2004 Ö and were required to change it to meet state wetlands requirements. They did so and got it reapproved in 2006.

In that time various development codes changed, requiring more alterations, so it's now in front of the board again.

Loin said the biggest difference in the versions is the number of lots and various technical changes. Back in the 1980s, it had 68 single-family homes; today, the plans seek 34 houses plus a cluster of 32 age-restricted condos at one end.

Cournoyer said the old plans dubbed the long, no-outlet road "Parliament Blvd," but he wants to change that to "Leo Cournoyer Blvd."

"The plans were approved, but instead of re-approving it the way they'd approved it, they have a lot of new questions," Loin said.

Most of those questions came in a four-page document from DPW Director Kenneth Kalinowski, who wasn't at the hearing Wednesday. Many of them referred to small missing details on the plans themselves, but several others focused on the fact there are no good plans of the existing, unnamed road and the infrastructure within it needs upgrading.

See Friday's Southbridge Evening News for complete coverage of community news.

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