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Boat Storage Building Approved Despite Opposition

A new boat storage building in the town of Chautauqua has been approved, despite neighbors who are opposed to it.

During a meeting of the Chautauqua Town Board in November, officials unanimously approved a special use permit to We Store It LLC to construct a 70-foot by 104-foot pole barn storage building on Mather Road and Meadow Lane, behind Chautauqua Harbor House restaurant.

Last month, neighbors Jesse Kresek and Karen Gross spoke about their concerns of water run-off, stating the current four foot elevation of land for the site has put their property under water, causing pressure cracks in their homes.

Lou Clementi with We Store It said the water runoff is being properly diverted and all drainage was put in place and recommended by the Chautauqua County Soil and Water Department.

Clementi has 10 other storage buildings back there, some of which were constructed more than 30 years ago. They are mainly used for boat storage.

Gross said in an interview that she has reached out to the Army Corp of Engineers because she believes the development is damaging her home and her neighbor’s home.

“I’ve got cracks in my ceiling, cracks in my walls. … Water went over my boots the other day in my front yard,” she said.

She believes that when the land was cleared, the springs’ runoff was changed.

Meadow Lane is a private road. Supervisor Don Emhardt said he personally walked through the area with a member of the county’s Soil and Water Department when it was raining to see if it was draining property, which he said it was.

After the Town Board gave its approval, Gross said she plans on filing a lawsuit against the town and the storage company to stop construction.

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