APA permits let Tupper resort sell lots

Adirondack Club and Resort developers received their first two permits from the state Adirondack Park Agency on Sept. 29, allowing them to close on sales of luxury housing lots and begin construction of a road connecting the lots to Lake Simond Road in Tupper Lake.

The project has been in the works since 2004, but it’s only now at a point when it can start breaking ground.

These 24 “great camp” lots are phase one of the ACR project, which is supposed to include the Big Tupper Ski Area and an, equestrian center, hotel and marina on Big Tupper Lake. The project is planned to be completed in steps, with each phase helping fund the next.

Permit paperwork recorded in the Franklin County clerk’s office Wednesday afternoon allows the project to generate income for the first time as buyers can now purchase lots and prepare to build on them. According to developer Michael Foxman, of Pennsylvania, five potential buyers have put deposits down on their desired lots, and the sales may be finalized in 30 to 60 days.

The APA approved the resort in concept in 2012 but arranged things so permits would be needed for each phase.

With 14 permits in total, the ACR project requires a mountain of paperwork with the APA as it involves wetlands, commercial use, tourist accommodations, major public utility uses, structures over 40 feet in height, reconstruction of a ski center, development above 2,500 feet and subdivisions creating more than 75 lots and sites.

The issuing of these permits themselves come after a two-year-long court battle with Protect the Adirondacks and the Sierra Club from 2012 to 2014 and lengthy permit applications since.

“[These permits] mean we have the right to proceed with the first resort of its kind, and the only resort of its kind in the Adirondack Park,” Foxman said.

The 5.46-mile-long Pond Road, leading into the great camp lots, already mostly exists as it will be built on an old logging road. With a path already cleared into the woods, Foxman said the plan is to work on road construction until the winter temperatures freeze the project for several months.

Residents of the “great camp” lots will have to follow APA regulations in building on their new properties. In addition to a house, each lot may include two woodsheds and one lean-to, each less than 100 square feet, houses must meet or exceed energy efficiency guidelines set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and vegetative clearing is tightly regulated.

“Everyone is relaxed, moving forward and working on what they are supposed to be working on,” Foxman said.

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