February 8, 2019

In Matter of Livingston Development Group v. Village of Dobbs Ferry, decided January 16, 2019, the Appellate Division, Second Department, reversed the Supreme Court and upheld the Village of Dobbs Ferry Zoning Board of Appeals’ decision that the petitioner’s two proposed six-unit multi-family buildings were excessively dissimilar to the character of the surrounding area.

The Court held in relevant part as follows: “Even assuming that the AHRB and the ZBA usurped the power of the Planning Board in considering the impact of the proposed project on views …, upon our review, the ZBA’s determination should have been upheld since the determination was not based exclusively upon that finding….The determination also included a finding that the proposed buildings would be “so detrimental to the desirability . . . of the surrounding area . . . as to provoke such harmful effects by excessive dissimilarity”….This determination was rational, not arbitrary or capricious, and supported by evidence in the record.”

A copy of the decision can be obtained online: http://www.courts.state.ny.us/courts/ad2/Handdowns/2019/Decisions/D57910.pdf

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