99 Hawley Lane Development on Agenda

Inland Wetlands Commission Meeting

Monday, July 18th at 7 p.m.
Town Hall Council Chambers

A public hearing is being held on Monday, July 18th at 7 p.m. in Town Hall Council Chambers regarding a proposed 129-unit apartment complex for 99 Hawley Lane. The developer for this site is Mountain Development Corp from New Jersey. For residents that oppose this, it is critical to show up and tell the Inland Wetlands Commission why this is a bad idea.

The area directly borders a wetland, a type of environment that is especially sensitive to nearby development. Wetlands absorb water, protect against erosion and flooding, and provide wildlife habitat. In fact, a very sensitive resident lives in this area—the eastern box turtle, a state listed species of special concern.

99 Hawley Lane is part of a larger area included in the Natural Diversity Data Base recognized as eastern box turtle habitat. The Natural Diversity Data Base (NDDB) shows approximate locations of species in Connecticut that have been designated as endangered, threatened, or special concern.

Unfortunately, viewing the NDDB map of the Hawley Lane area, it is hard to imagine where else box turtles will be able to go if this development gets approved. The property is bordered by the Big Y Plaza, an office building, a neighborhood and busy streets. Box turtles typically live in forests, field edges, near streams and use wetland areas throughout the year. This habitat is being squeezed into smaller and more fragmented pieces.

Many other plants and animals inhabit this area as well. Where will they go if the trees are cut, the rock blasted, the ground leveled? These creatures have a right to their homes just as we do to ours. This is not what a sustainable community allows to happen to its land.

Did you know that as part of the review process, the Inland Wetlands Commission can hire a biologist to conduct a wildlife survey? Come to the public hearing and make a point of asking them to do this.

Reaching out to DEEP confirmed that the Eastern Box Turtle, a state listed species of special concern, has been documented near or in the proposed area for development.

We ask that the Inland Wetlands Commission request that the developer, Mountain Development Corp, hire an independent herpetologist (amphibian/reptile expert) to survey the area for Eastern Box Turtles, and come up with a plan to conserve the turtles and their dwindling habitat.”

Whether you are worried about traffic, blasting, the elimination of habitat—please come to the public hearing on July 18th at 7 p.m. and make your voice heard.

“..your house is only your second biggest investment in life. Your environment is your first.”

Reaching out to DEEP confirmed that the eastern box turtle, a state listed species of special concern, has been documented near or in the proposed area for development.

We now ask that the Inland Wetlands Commission request that the developer, Mountain Development Corp, hire an independent herpetologist (amphibian/reptile expert) to survey the area for Eastern Box Turtles, and come up with a plan to conserve the turtles and their dwindling habitat.”

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