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Two high-profile Amherst projects off March Planning Board agenda

The Amherst Planning Board won't vote on two large-scale, high-profile projects at its March meeting.

A sprawling mixed-used redevelopment of the former Westwood Country Club and a 133-home subdivision eyed for the Muir Woods site were tentatively scheduled to be discussed at the Planning Board's March 16 meeting.

Whenever the Westwood project or previous plans to develop the 326-acre Muir Woods site have been discussed, dozens of residents have packed the Amherst Municipal Building in Williamsville to hear the debate and make their concerns known to town officials. That's why Amherst planners wanted to give the public advance notice that the two closely watched projects won't come back until April's Planning Board meeting at the earliest.

In the case of Westwood, developer Mensch Capital Partners filed a required traffic study only on Friday and has not resolved sanitary sewer concerns raised by the town's Engineering Department, said Ellen Kost, an associate town planner.

As for Muir Woods, town planners have determined it's more appropriate for the Planning Board to skip a review of the project's sketch plan and move straight to a more in-depth review of its preliminary plan, Kost said, because the project is in a new community district. This requires the developer, Ciminelli Real Estate Corp., to file more detailed engineering work that won't be ready in time for the March meeting.

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