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Town of Lockport plans smaller home lots

LOCKPORT – The Town of Lockport is planning to reduce the minimum size of a home lot in the town in hopes of spurring more development.

The Town Board voted Wednesday to hold an April 8 public hearing on a batch of revisions to town laws, but the lot size change may be the most important.

Up until 2004, the town allowed houses to built on lots as narrow as 80 feet. In that year, the minimum width was raised to 100 feet. “We saw development drop off to a really slow pace,” Supervisor Marc R. Smith said.

The new law would reduce the minimum width of a home lot to 85 feet in a single-family residential zone. In an agricultural-residential zone, the minimum width would be reduced from 125 feet to 100 feet. Also, the minimum areas of home lots would be reduced in both zones. A home lot could be as little as 12,750 square feet in a single-family zone, down from 15,000 square feet. In an agricultural zone, the reduction would be from 18,750 to 15,000 square feet. Those figure are for lots with sewers. Lots without sewers could be larger.

The notion of converting the Town of Lockport’s street lights to energy-saving LED bulbs could come with a high price attached, the board learned Wednesday.

Smith said the town would have to buy the roughly 1,200 poles and their light fixtures from New York State Electric & Gas Corp., at cost of millions of dollars. The town then would then have to maintain the lights and poles. “Obviously, that’s a concern with our manpower and equipment and overtime,” said Smith.

However, the New York Power Authority is still working on an energy-saving street lighting plan for towns, Smith reported, and he said he told NYPA that Lockport would be interested in being the site of a pilot project.

On another topic, Smith announced that the board will vote April 8 on this year’s program of road repairs and ditch clean-outs. He said that Hamm Road and Shimer and Sherman drives, three roads that are in especially poor condition, are on the preliminary list for repaving.

Also Wednesday, the board approved bidding on a program of spot repairs to sewer lines along Tonawanda Creek Road, with bids to be opened April 22. Klavoon said there is a $1.1 million budget for the work, but he said the estimated cost is $672,000.