Yorktown Closes Costco Hearing After Lengthy Debate

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Yorktown resident Ben Falk speaks in favor of Costco as the planning board's public hearing Monday night. Photo Credit: Brian Marschhauser
The Yorktown Planning Board moved the Costco public hearing to the Yorktown Stage in anticipation of a large crowd. Photo Credit: Brian Marschhauser

YORKTOWN, N.Y. –- Contentiousness was kept to a minimum Monday night as the public hearing on the proposed Costco Wholesale Club at 3200 Crompond Road closed after hours of mostly-civil arguments for and against the project.

Monday’s hearing at the Yorktown Stage was in stark contrast to the Oct. 15 hearing in regards to turnout, venue and and heated arguments. Most similar, however, were the comments by Yorktown residents. Planning Board Chair Richard Fon stopped speakers numerous times from repeating points that were made earlier.

Many opponents of Costco maintained the 151,000 square-foot wholesale club would increase traffic, hurt local businesses and cause a number of other environmental concerns.

“We have an obligation to maintain Yorktown as a town for raising families,” said Alan Weger, who worries that new taxes brought in by Costco would be off-set by the loss of other businesses. In its draft environmental impact statement, Costco estimates it will bring in more than $900,000 in new tax revenue to the town and school district.

Supporters continued to argue that competition could only help other businesses in town, including the neighboring BJ's Wholesale Club, and referenced Costco’s ranking as number one on the American Consumer Satisfaction Index as evidence the store will have a positive impact on town.

“To be number one, they are doing something right,” said Andrea Wagner. “They have chosen Yorktown; they have done their homework.”

Specific questions about the project brought up by residents and planning board members during the two-part hearing will be compiled and sent to Costco to answer in the final environmental impact statement.

Residents can still submit written comments to the Planning Board for 30 days. All written comments must be received by the planning department by Wednesday, Dec. 19 at: Yorktown Planning Department, 1974 Commerce St., Yorktown Heights, NY 10598. Comments can also be faxed to 914-962-3986 or emailed to planning@yorktownny.org.

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