The Town of Clayton's Planning and Zoning Commission approved a preliminary subdivision application for the St. Joseph's property at a Dec. 11 committee meeting.

The proposal asks for the St. Joseph's property on Duck Creek Road to be subdivided into five parcels with two parcels each to be sold to Hanover Foods and Providence Creek Academy. The remaining parcel will be the actual school, which is also being sold by M&T Bank. The property was put on the market last year after it went into foreclosure, according to Town Foreman Jeff Hurlock.

The plan was presented to the committee by lawyer Mike Parkowski, of Parkowski, Guerke & Swayze, and engineer Michael Paraskewich, of engineering firm Pelsa.

Paraskewich went over the subdivision of the 80 acre property with the commission.

"Really the purpose of this subdivision is to clean up a few things," he said.

Hanover Foods property

Parcels 1 and 2, if the deal is eventually approved, will go to Hanover Foods Corporation. Paraskewich said the purpose of these two lots for Hanover would be as buffer lands.

When asked if Hanover had any plans to use their parcels for spray irrigation, Parkowski said no and that there was actually talk of keeping the land as open space with questions of who would farm the parcels. He added that the desire to use the land as buffer came up out of fear if a residential development was built nearby, there would be questions regarding quality of life with the proximity of backyards to Hanover.

Providence Creek's property

Parcels 4 and 5 would be added to Providence Creek Academy's property. Paraskewich said it was discovered during the process that the charter school was using a portion of land for parking of buses on land that would go to Hanover.

"Parcel 4 is actually being created to fix the problem that's there now and add that now to the charter school property," he said.

As for parcel 5, Paraskewich said this is the area by the cemetery. This area is used by the school for outings, with no plans of changing this in the future.

St. Joseph's up for sale

Parcel 3 would be the remaining lands of the St. Joseph's facility, which Paraskewich said he believes is being marketed now.

During the discussion, it was noted by Committee Chairman Tom Watts and Hurlock that the interested parties wouldn't need to go through the typical subdivision ordinance steps as they are non-applicable since there are no plans for building on the subdivision.

The committee unanimously approved the motion to forward the preliminary subdivision application to Clayton Town Council with the stipulation that the subdivision ordinance steps for approval are non-applicable. Hurlock also asked for the plans to note a right-of-way easement between the Hanover parcels and Providence Creek parcels to show the land won't be landlocked.

After the meeting, Hurlock said if council ultimately approves this deal it could be very big for Clayton.

"It would be great for the town if we can get the St. Joe's property revitalized," Hurlock said. "There are a lot of vacant buildings there; we hope this will help the school."

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