Project Description

"At the Carvel Property, the development team looks forward to creating an exciting project designed, developed and operated with sensitivity to environmental resources while minimizing changes to the local character, which will emerge through an open dialogue with the public."

— Douglas Durst & Jody Durst

For the past year, The Durst Organization has been meeting with the Towns of Pine Plains and Milan to solicit feedback from local residents related to the property, and answer questions about the Project. New ideas and a desire to create economic opportunities for the Towns has prompted The Durst Organization to re-conceptualize the Project. During 2019, the Project will undergo a new master planning process with attention given to a revised development program, redesigned layout and economic opportunities that meet many of the Towns' future objectives. The Durst Organization remains committed to working closely with the Towns of Pine Plains and Milan.

The prior Project envisioned a golf and recreation-oriented second home vacation community in the towns of Pine Plains and Milan. A portion of this community is located in the Town of Pine Plains and comprises a proposed New Neighborhood Development (NND). The NND Project was designed around protection of environmental features, preservation of open space, and compatibility with the rural image and character of the roadways and neighborhoods surrounding the site. The new re-conceptualized master plan will also embrace those same design elements.

Environmental sustainability is a central tenet of the Project. Following extensive investigation and documentation of the site’s natural features and habitats, the design team continues to follow a rigorous approach to protect the environment and local ecology. Preservation strategies include:

  • Protective buffers around wetlands and amphibian breeding pools;
  • Concentrating development away from the ecologically important Ham Brook watershed;
  • A proposed rural road system designed to minimize disturbance and impact;
  • Compact development sited to avoid critical watersheds and habitats, preserve stream and wetland buffers, and maintain contiguous forested corridors.

Publicly-accessible hiking trails stretching across the project site continue to be an important element of the development plan. The trailhead will be located at the Spruce Farm Chautauqua, a proposed cultural and recreational facility which will include an artist-in-residence program, a community garden, and agricultural uses.

The new reconceptualized master plan continues to evolve through an ongoing dialogue with the Towns of Pine Plains and Milan, a thorough understanding of the project site and its resources, and the continuing involvement of the local residents through an open and interactive review process.