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The Sun letter to the editor: Say no to DATO Development LLC

The old adage just because you can doesn’t mean you should seems to fit perfectly for the proposed Sherwood Meadows Apartment Complex, proposed by DATO Development LLC.

I am a resident of Roundtree Village in the town of Hamburg, located off Howard Road. DATO Development LLC proposed 56 townhouses to be build off Heatherwood Drive. Being the good, welcoming neighbors that we all are here in Roundtree Village, we didn’t object to this plan. We considered this to be a reasonable request, since they would be two-story buildings priced similarly to our homes. This proposal was approved by the town of Hamburg Planning Board in 2007.

Recently, DATO decided to change the plan to apartment buildings housing up to 16 units, instead of the townhouses. Unlike the original plan, this is not acceptable to me and my neighbors.

The apartments would house 128 units and have 256 parking spaces. This would drastically effect the character and safety and welfare of our neighborhood. Our main concern is that our current quite streets would provide the entrance to the apartment complex. Yes, our streets would be their driveway. DATO has no intention of purchasing additional property to provide and entrance and exit to a main road like Route 20.

Recently, DATO’s attorneys, Sean Hopkins and Rob Pidanick, spoke at a planning board meeting, citing all the legal reason why DATO should be able to build their apartments.

They spoke of zoning laws and sewer systems and the quality of the roads and their ability to handle the traffic. They said that these 128 units would not significantly negatively impact our neighborhood.

Interestingly, what was not said was that it is was the right thing to do. I come back to my opening statement: Sometimes, just because you can doesn’t mean you should. Never did DATO’s attorneys speak to the best interests of us the people who currently live there. They spoke only about the law and DATO’s rights to build there.

Roundtree residents have rights, too. We have the right to raise our children in the neighborhood we bought in. Adding these apartment buildings to our quite residential neighborhood changes that.

We did not, nor would we have, purchased a house on a road that serves as a 128 resident apartments complex’s driveway. My right to continue living in peaceful and safe neighborhood needs to be considered.

My neighbors will have a 16-unit apartment building looming over their backyards. Our streets will be packed with upwards of 256 new cars’ traveling up and down them on a regular basis, causing noise, pollution and, most importantly. a danger to the neighborhood children, who ride their bikes and play their sports in the streets.

We need all Hamburg residents’ support. If we continue to allow large companies to build whatever and wherever they wish, Hamburg will no longer be the town that friendship build, but the town that money built.

Michael Edwards

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