Planning board extends Adirondack Club and Resort’s building permit

TUPPER LAKE – The planning board here unanimously passed a resolution last Wednesday to extend a building permit for the Adirondack Club and Resort’s “great camp” lots.

The extension renews the original permit, which the board passed on April 24. That resolution was set to expire after 180 days, which will be in October.

Before the vote, planning board member Bob Collier sarcastically asked developer Tom Lawson why no progress had been made, saying it should be documented in the board’s minutes.

Resort supporters say the resort, which received state Adirondack Park Agency permits in January 2012, is being held up by a lawsuit filed by Protect the Adirondacks, the Sierra Club and three neighbors.

“We’re swimming upstream against people that are trying to drag this out and make it last longer than it should,” Lawson said. “We continue to invest vast amounts of money into this project.”

The planning board permit includes conditions like setting up a fund that will take 7.25 percent of the gross sale price of each of the 18 residential lots in the first phase, saving that money for “operation and maintenance of and capital improvements to the Big Tupper Ski Area.” The fund will be managed by three people: the developer or a designee, the entity operating the ski area and its designee, and the town supervisor and his or her designee.

The development of the great camp lots would mark the first phase of a plan to build the ACR on and around the Big Tupper Ski Area.

Phase one is projected to include a total of 22 lots: one dedicated to a road, three open-space lots and 18 single-family residences. It will encompass 3,625 acres of the 6,253 total acres in the project site.

On the lawsuit, Protect filed a brief on Sept. 9 to the Supreme Court’s Appellate Division with 29 allegations of how the APA violated legal process and parts of the APA Act in voting to approve the ACR project. The state and ACR representatives now have 45 days to respond to this brief, and Protect will then have 15 days to reply to them.

Lawson told the board he expects a decision to be made early next year and construction to begin shortly thereafter.

“We’re getting very near the end of this game,” Lawson said. “It’s all about drawing this out. They accomplished exactly what they wanted to – people didn’t work this summer. Next summer, we expect to have everybody back to work.”

Contact Shaun Kittle at 891-2600 ext. 25 or