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Splash Car Wash: Final Approval, Lawsuit

The proposal is on the agenda for this evening's planning board meeting.

Parties involved in a lawsuit that alleges the planning board of the Town of Bedford "failed to take a hard look" at the proposal for a Splash car wash at 570 North Bedford Road may appear in court this week.

The suit, filed by Dino DeFeo, a resident of Valerio Court—which will see an increase in traffic because access to the car wash would be from that street—names the following as defendants: Bedford's zoning board of appeals (ZBA), the planning board, Splash Management Group, LLC, Onab. Corp. and 570 North Bedford Road, LLC. It was filed with the Supreme Court of the State of New York in and for the County of Westchester.

Supervisor Lee V. A. Roberts said her policy is not to comment on pending litigation against the town. Patch was unable to reach representatives for the other parties named.

The suit, which was filed late last month, requests that the negative declaration—a document issued by the planning board when members have determined there would be no significant impact on the environment—be vacated and annulled. It asks the same of the special permit and variances provided by the ZBA, and says that the traffic data officials studied was inaccurate.

Because the planning board did not take a "hard look" at the inconsistencies between the project and the town's master plan, the negative declaration is "illegal and arbitrary and capricious," the suit claims. The use variance issued by the ZBA is illegal, too, the document states, because the applicant failed to establish unnecessary hardship by failing to demonstrate both that they could not receive a reasonable return on investment under current zoning and that their hardship was not self-created.

Splash Car Wash is located at 527 Bedford Road. Russell Speeders car wash plans to open there in the spring. Splash is slated to move across and down the street, to the former Carvel site, which falls partially in a residential zone and partially in the roadside business zone.

The planning board recently gave preliminary site plan approval for Splash's plans, after more than a year of discussions. The proposal—specifically, final site plan approval—is the fourth item on the agenda for this evening's planning board meeting, which starts at 8 p.m. 

Feb. 28 is the return date for the lawsuit. DeFeo's lawyer, David Squirrell of Mount Kisco, said an adjournment for a later date is possible. None of the defendants have filed responses.

mark March 02, 2013 at 12:59 PM
adding a unit across the street will not reduce prices, unless it is a competitor.
Dan March 02, 2013 at 03:05 PM
It is a totally different owner, so competition will be good. Unlike certain Tire companies in the area that all have different names but are owned by Mavis or even some Heating Oil companies in the area that are owned by a Parent company.
bedford resident April 01, 2013 at 11:59 AM
funny.... weather you are all for or against the new "business"....none of you mention the houses behind the new business..... that would be drowned out but traffic and noise and be trampled on to build this new business. access in and out of that road is difficult enough as is and car dealer personell and bank users that just don't know how to properly park now..... what will happen later? how will anyone ever be able to get to their house with the road being blocked by those waiting in line for the car wash. the parking lot on the other side, also used by savatree is mostly empty.... why not make access to and from the car wash via that lot and leave valerio court alone.
Don Pachner April 01, 2013 at 01:45 PM
I think enough concern about impact of the Splash plan and a zoning variance on a residential street has been demonstrated and should be examined more closely in a Type I determination by the ZBA and the Planning Board. The drawback is (1) At this point in time, a full blown environnmental impact statement will take a long time, will be expensive, and take up significant time of the ZBA and the planning board (2) The imposition of a Type I determination at this point in time will have a significant impact on the business competition between the landlord (owned by the competitor of Splash) and the applicant, Splash. (3) I am always more sympathetic to a tenant than to a landlord in a dispute of this sort. Splash is being evicted by a competitor who happens to be their landlord (and in a position of business leverage as landlord of the competing car wash). In line with what some others have pointed out in the comments here, I think the town and Splash should come up with an alternative way to route traffic without disrupting the residential street.
bedford resident April 01, 2013 at 03:33 PM
Don... I fully agree with the alternative way to route the in and out of the car wash. Thank you for supporting the thought. As for the business aspect, at the end of the day business is business..... personally I don't think Splash is making a good location choice anyway. if their competitor is also their landlord... or was and therefore forced them out, it implies to me that they have more money and less to loose by being the owner of the building... therefore, the competition they will instill will be fierce. it will be a shame to create soo much disruption to valerio court just to see splash go out of business later on. it really does not make sense to have 2 car washes within one mile of each other. the other end of mount kisco has none..... and I'm sure they would be grateful to have one closer to them. Route 117 is incredibly overcrowded as is........ adding to it is not very responsible. I see the need for a traffic light already, just with bank customers and dealership in and out is congested already. just curious..... Do the Splash people and /or their architects have permission to enter the property of those located behind this proposed lot at their disposal????? they go in and out of the property a lot without permission while doing their measurements and it does not seem right. who should they be reported to?

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