GLENBURN — To the delight of residents here, the Town Council voted 3-1 Thursday to scrap a proposal to relocate the access to Cedar Breeze South landing on Pushaw Lake.
During a packed public hearing earlier in the evening, people vociferously opposed the plan in which the current 4,000-foot access from Pushaw Road — Cedar Breeze South — would be replaced by a 950-foot strip between Cedar Breeze South and Cedar Breeze Center known as Cedar Breeze Shores.
Town Manager Peter Chase, who advocated the change because the shorter route would save the town at least $70,000 in reconstruction and maintenance costs, said Cedar Breeze Shores would be rebuilt into a 12-foot-wide, single-lane road.
But that did not set well with residents who worried that a firetruck would have a hard time maneuvering on the road, especially if another car were headed the opposite way.
They also objected to the additional traffic that would occur on Cedar Breeze Center and the part of Cedar Breeze North that leads into Cedar Breeze Center.
Although Chase said that according to Department of Transportation criteria, a 12-foot road would be adequate to handle the traffic, resident Frank Jack said the road would not be wide enough for boats and trailers.
And, Councilor Mark Stevens pointed out, the road also would be too narrow for additional traffic which any future development in the area could bring about.
Applause broke out when Stevens, along with Councilors Howard Dunn and Richard Cookson voted to abolish the plan. Councilor Marie Saucier, meanwhile, voted to continue looking into it.
Cookson said he objected to the plan because he was concerned about the town maintaining more land along the shore line, while Dunn said safety issues made it “ludicrous to close down Cedar Breeze South.”
Although there are no houses on the current access road, 18 year-round and 13 seasonal homes sit on Cedar Breeze South landing. About six year-round and seasonal homes are located on Cedar Breeze Shores.
Meanwhile, residents maintained that, in the scheme of things, saving $70,000 didn’t mean that much.
Jeff Feero, a resident of Cedar Breeze North, pointed out that the fire department would have to travel an extra half mile to Cedar Breeze Shores.
“Seconds count,” he said. “If you could move the fire department farther from the school to save $70,000, would you do it?”
And, Tom Placella, who lives part of the year on Cedar Breeze Center, said it would be folly to discontinue Cedar Breeze South.
“Once you do away with a road, you never get it back,” he said.