The proposed Orchard Street apartments have officially been rejected.
The Hillsdale Planning Board unanimously voted to deny an application to build a 36-unit apartment building during their meeting Wednesday.
Developer 100 Park Avenue Associates had proposed to demolish three Orchard Street homes and build a new 36-unit apartment building in their place, which would have included four low income housing units. The building was designed to match a nearby apartment building on Patterson Street owned by the same developer.
Mark Sokolich, the attorney representing the applicant, said the applicant had made many changes to the plan at the request of residents and officials, including the drop from 46 to 36 planned apartments. Sokolich said he believed the plan would have been beneficial because it would broaden the kind of housing available in Hillsdale.
"This is the right application for the right property during the right time," Sokolich said.
Board members and Hillsdale residents cited traffic as a primary concern with the plan. The site falls on a busy street between Broadway and the train tracks, an area which can already cause headaches for drivers, residents said. Board member Ed Alter noted that Orchard Street was the most accident-prone street in Hillsdale in 2008.
"I don't think they've proved this project is particularly well-suited to this site," Alter said.
The plan also would have needed a use variance because it is located in the commercial zone. Residents said they believed another use would cause fewer problems compared to apartments.
"I don't see a medical building being as obtrusive as 36 apartments," Hillsdale resident Marisa Cefali said.
The next Hillsdale Planning Board meeting is October 2.