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Town of Chautauqua takes over Mandolin Ridge road

OBSERVER Photos by Gregory Bacon Progress is being made in the Mandolin Ridge housing development in the town of Chautauqua.

The town of Chautauqua has adopted its first new road in about 15 years.

During a meeting last week of the Chautauqua Town Board, members unanimously accepted the nearly 2-mile-long road at Mandolin Ridge for the town to plow and maintain moving forward. Before taking over the road, the town required a $300,000 bond to ensure the road was up to town standards. The road, which is not yet been named, is for the new Mandolin Ridge housing development.

Mandolin Ridge is a 54-lot subdivision located near the intersection of Chautauqua-Stedman Road and Route 394 in the town of Chautauqua. H&H Chautauqua Development LLC is the owner of the project and Mayshark Builders Inc. of Mayville is the developer. Along with the 54 lots, there are three commercial lots there as well.

Water for the development will be coming from Chautauqua Institution. Chautauqua County Legislature Chairman Pierre Chagnon said in a previous interview the plan is for the north county sewer district to be extended for the housing development.

Town Supervisor Don Emhardt said during last week’s meeting that the developer needs the town to take over the road in order for them to start selling the lots.

Town officials asked the bond be in place through Oct. 1 and said they plan on doing some plowing during this winter to see how well it holds up. As of right now, the road appears to be high quality and doesn’t show any signs of imperfection.

“You can’t bond the road forever. At some point we need to be responsible for them,” said Joel Seachrist, town attorney.

Emhardt said the last time the town took over a road was when a subdivision was put in around 2004 near Stedman.

In other business, no vote was taken on the proposed solar project on Hartfield-Stockton Road. Officials said last month they hoped to vote on the project in January, however Emhardt said changes have been made and they’re not ready to vote on it.

The town has been exploring the solar project since last summer. Two people at the meeting spoke out against the solar project.

Roger Klossner said he would rather the solar project be placed where it can’t be seen or where there’s dilapidated buildings, instead of farmland. He believes where the project will be located will negatively affect his property value.

Karen Engstrom of Mayville is opposed to solar projects in general. She spoke for more than 10 minutes citing various websites and studies that she says shows the projects do more harm than good. She urged town officials as the “last line of defense” to stand against renewable energy projects.

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