Thursday, Dec 08th

BAR Gives Developer Approval to Build Towering Retaining Walls on Kingston Road Hill Plus Home Sales and Featured Listings

nadlerspatioThe Nadler's patio at 171 Brite AvenueAfter a lengthy battle, the owner of a home on Brite Avenue in Greenacres has lost his campaign to prevent the construction of a series of tall retaining walls topped by fences on the hill behind his home. Realtor Mark Nadler has lived and worked in Scarsdale for years, but when a developer purchased a home at 4 Kingston Road, directly above his house, he learned that the Village of Scarsdale does little to protect the rights of homeowners.

Nadler’s home at 171 Brite Avenue sits on the bottom of a hill with a 40% slope that extends from the neighbor’s yard down to his patio. The slope is currently heavily covered in trees and shrubs which hides the neighboring home and is a nice backdrop for his patio.

However a developer bought 4 Kingston, the longtime home of Scarsdale Bowl winner Jane Bedichek, and plans to expand the house, add a pool and extend the flat portion of the backyard by building retaining walls and backfilling the yard. Joseph Ciarletta, of EJK 4 Kingston LLC, bought the property for $1.15 million in October 2019 and plans to more than double the size of the house to build an 8,000 square foot home with a pool.

That’s where the trouble for Nadler comes in. This series of retaining walls will extend across the entire hill, and some will be topped with fences. The primary retaining wall is 120’ long and 12 feet from Nadler’s property line. Some of the walls are 16 and ½ feet high. The house will loom 57” above his home and be visible from all sides.

In order to stop the work Nadler gathered 750 signatures from neighbors objecting to the project and appeared to have some success at a meeting of the Board of Architectural Review in January when they denied the developer approval. Ciarletta resubmitted plans for the March 1, 2021 BAR meeting and moved the pool to the uphill side of the property. However, he continued to pursue the expansion of the yard with the installation of tall retaining walls on the hill.photosimulationA photo simulation of what is view will be once the walls are installed.

This project was last on the BAR agenda and the discussion did not begin until after 10 pm. The chair repeatedly asked everyone to be brief and did not give Nadler’s experts, who he retained at his own expense, the opportunity to present their findings. Nadler says, “The chair did not permit my hired professional experts to present the plans, showing the changes as they had been made by the developer. The microphone of the developer was left open and he interrupted, contradicted and then called us “liars and manipulators” before threatening legal action. The chair of the BAR did nothing to control this meeting and as a result, WRONG information was allowed to be presented again, making a farce of this approval process. The chair evidently ran out of patience, or energy and despite several BAR members having objections and wanting conditions made prior to approval of the plan, called for a straw vote, and then, knowing that it would be approved, put it up for vote, where it passed.” (By a vote of 4-3).

Village code governing the BAR does give them the power to deny approval for landscaping plans. Specifically it says:

Features and suitability
In considering an application for a permit, the Board shall take into account natural features of the site and surroundings, exterior design and appearances of existing structures and the character of the district and its peculiar suitability for particular purposes, with a view to conserving the values of property and encouraging the most appropriate use of land.

Grounds for Approval
The Board may approve any application referred to … upon finding that it would not mar the appearance of the area, would not impair the use, enjoyment and desirability and reduce the values of properties in the area, would not be detrimental to the character of the neighborhood, would not prevent the most appropriate development and utilization of the site or of adjacent lands and would not adversely affect the functioning economic stability, prosperity, health, safety and general welfare of the entire community.

However, unlike Greenburgh and many neighboring Villages, Scarsdale does not have laws requiring special permits for building on steep slopes.


Nadler cannot appeal the decision of the BAR to the Board of Trustees, so if he wishes to pursue this further, he will have to sue the Village. Frustrated and angry, Nadler wrote the letter below to the Mayor:

Dear Mr. Mayor,

Prior to the January BAR meeting you had assured me that we would receive a fair hearing and be allowed to present our information when we spoke prior to the BAR meeting in January. Indeed, that did happen and the approval was not given. No such hearing was conducted last night and approval WAS given, despite the number of retaining walls increasing, the length of the walls increasing and the addition of fences on top of the walls!

Please watch the recording of the discussion on 4 Kingston Road that happened at the BAR meeting last night and explain why we were not provided the same opportunity to present our information. The chair admonished us to NOT repeat ourselves since it was so late, prevented my experts from showing the plans that the builder had presented to us WITHOUT RETAINING WALLS or the destruction of the slope, told the BAR members to limit their questions since it was late.

The builder was allowed to have an open microphone for the entire meeting, constantly interrupted the BAR members, my experts and me, threatened us, called us “liars and manipulators” and was not controlled at all.

I am outraged at the way this part of the meeting was run and the unfair result that was delivered despite the facts we had prepared and presented (limited as we were) versus the inconsistencies and misrepresentations of the submissions made by the applicant. One example was the photos of the new “boulder wall” which a BAR member astutely pointed out did not match the description in the plan. The chair dismissed this plus many other important pieces of the discussion such as that the landscaping plan does not match the renderings the applicant displayed of my backyard. These are the same type of misrepresentations that happened at the June meeting and led the improper approval of the project then.

The chair completely failed to run or control this meeting and despite the retaining walls getting longer and multiplying with fences on top of them (versus what was presented in January), the vote was rushed and shoved through 4-3 in favor of the applicant despite several of the BAR members asking for conditions to be made for the approval. The chair must have decided that he could not permit the meeting to run any longer since it was after midnight or he wanted to be permanently done with 4 Kingston.

The bar failed to get it right last night and you can now add 4 Kingston Road to the growing list of construction projects that everyone points to and says, “How was that ever approved?”

Watch the recording and tell me if you disagree. Otherwise, I would like to hear how you are going to correct this situation.


Nadler received a swift response from Village Planner Greg Cutler who offered little solace. He said,

Dear Mr. Nadler,

Your email to the Mayor was forwarded to me for response. Thank you for your comments regarding the recent Board of Architectural Review meeting. Please note that the Board of Architectural Review operates independent of the Mayor and Board of Trustees. The Board of Trustees convenes on an annual basis to appoint members to the land use boards, including the Board of Architectural Review, but once members are appointed they review applications in accordance with Village law and without the involvement of the Mayor and Board of Trustees. Your comments are certainly noted but it would be inappropriate for the Mayor or Board of Trustees to comment on the substantive or procedural aspects of a matter that had been considered by a Village land use board.

Best regards,
Gregory Cutler, AICP
Village Planner

25 Murray Hill Road25 Murray Hill Road
Character abounds in this dramatic and sun-filled Center Hall brick Colonial overlooking a park-like 1.01 acres of professionally landscaped private level property with room for a pool. Special features: grand double height center hall with elegant curved staircase, stunning step down living room with 10’ ceiling and beautiful marble fireplace with dentil molding, large master bedroom suite with dressing room and door to balcony, abundant closet space, generously proportioned rooms, circular driveway with easy direct access to generous sized garage to mudroom/kitchen, potential to finish lower level with 8+ foot ceiling and plumbing for bath with door to backyard. Impressive curb appeal in the heart of Murray Hill!
Sale Price: $2,425,000
Assessed Value: $2,450,000
Real Estate Taxes: $61,241

75 Popham Road75 Popham Road
A porch swing big enough for the whole family and an unrivaled location, this craftsman colonial style home will make you feel at home. Beautiful architectural details throughout and lots of windows illuminate the newly finished hardwood floors and freshly painted interior. The house is nicely laid out with plenty of space to work, play and relax. The kitchen has updated appliances and a center island. The second floor has a gracious landing that leads to a master suite with 3 additional bedrooms and hall bath with onyx countertops. The finished attic is a true oasis with a bar area and incredible detailed woodwork that is reminiscent of a rustic lodge. The backyard is perfectly level and feels extremely private. There is a two car attached garage with space for a potential studio with a separate entrance. This home is ideally located in the heart of Fox Meadow.
Sale Price: $1,275,000
Assessed Value: $1,290,486
Real Estate Taxes: $31,870

3 Candlewood Court3 Candlewood Court
Beautiful Contemporary in Edgemont. Soaring ceilings, abundant natural light, and fabulous room to room flow located at end of cul-de-sac. This 4 bed 3.5 bath home features large bedrooms with oversized closets and abundant storage throughout. Kitchen features Viking appliances, set up to entertain, with custom cabinetry and storage. Laundry room conveniently located on first floor. Large composite deck is accessed from kitchen, dining and sunrooms. master bedroom features large 3 piece bathroom with jetted tub, his/hers closets and vaulted ceilings. Additional square footage in lower level recreation room for exercise, crafts, hobbies or office with walk out to backyard. Custom built-in cabinets in dining room along with dining set and media cabinetry in family room are all included. Great location, quiet, yet convenient to all. Upgraded siding, insulation and roof.
Sale Price: $1,207,900
Assessed Value: $1,250,000
Real Estate Taxes: $43,060

98 Brown Road98 Brown Road
Delightful, sun-lit Fox Meadow Colonial just a seven minute stroll to Scarsdale Village. Completely rebuilt in 1995. You will love the soaring nine foot ceilings and open floor plan of the living room and formal dining room off the kitchen. The eat-in kitchen has new stainless steel appliances, SubZero refrigerator, granite countertops, and a breakfast nook with sliding glass doors that lead to a beautiful large, level backyard. Working from home is a breeze in the separate home office with powder room on the first floor. The second floor boasts a spacious and sun-filled master bedroom with en-suite bath and fitted out expansive closets. Two additional bedrooms and updated hall bathroom complete the second floor. The home has central air conditioning and gas fuel.
Sale Price: $999,000
Assessed Value: $750,000
Real Estate Taxes: $18,747

39 Paddington Road39 Paddington Road
This house is approximately 3,065 square feet; it has 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms with over a quarter of an acre with fully mature trees and a stream that runs through the entire neighborhood. Walk into your first floor with a eat-in kitchen, formal dining room, living room, study/office, laundry room and a full bath. Second floor has 4 bedrooms and two full bathrooms. 2 car attached garage with access into the main living area on the first floor.
Sale Price: $995,000
Assessed Value: $1,400,000
Real Estate Taxes: $34,779

139 Grand Boulevard139 Grand Boulevard
Totally renovated in 2019, thoughtfully designed home in Fox Meadow. The first level features a south facing, sun flooded living room open to dining room, open kitchen walk to huge new deck and large backyard, a guest bedroom/office and a full bathroom. The second floor boasts a master suite, two kids bedrooms and a full hallway bathroom and lots of storage. Half finished Full walk out basement.
Sale Price: $900,000
Assessed Value: $700,000
Real Estate Taxes: $17,104

239 S Healy Avenue239 S Healy Avenue
Quiet location and lots of space. You are greeted by a large, sunny living room and dining room. The eat-in kitchen has a door to the stone patio and yard. Main level has 2 family bedrooms and a hall bathroom. The king size primary bedroom has an en suite bathroom and walk-in closet. The second level has a big bedroom and full bathroom plus a large studio/office and access to attic storage. Walk out lower level features a full bathroom and bedroom plus a good size rec room and a large laundry room. Edgemont schools. New above ground oil tank. Beautiful private backyard. Double pane windows and hardwood floors.
Sale Price: $720,000
Assessed Value: $612,400
Real Estate Taxes: $19,725

Featured Listings
Five Corners Properties logo 01
01 4Broadmoor 2001 HiRes4 Broadmoor Road

Scarsdale, NY 10583
Listing Price: $2,375,000.
Private and tranquil, this elegant and unassuming home with over an acre of property and room for a pool is located in the Quaker Ridge area of Scarsdale and just a short walk to the elementary school. Upon entry, one finds a magnificent sunken living room with beautiful architectural details, rich wood floors and fireplace. A doorway takes you to a wood paneled den with fireplace, wet bar and French doors that lead to the private backyard. The home has a spacious dining room replete with natural light and another view of the impressive backyard. The spacious eat in kitchen has a built-in desk, commercial refrigerator, 6 burner stove and plenty of storage. Completing the 1st floor is a generously sized bedroom with en suite bath. The large primary bedroom suite has a separate dressing area and bath. The 2nd floor offers plenty of closets, 3 additional bedrooms and a hall bath. The 3rd floor bedroom with en-suite could be the perfect home office. The lower level includes a den with additional fireplace and recreation space.

175 Glendale Road175 Glendale Road

Scarsdale, NY 10583
Listing Price: $1,150,000
Charming Edgemont home, nestled in the desirable "ABC" neighborhood offers walk to sought-after Edgemont schools, commuter bus to Metro North and express bus, and is within ten minutes to cultural markets, restaurants, shops, parks, Greenburgh pool and recreation. Functional floor plan offers an eat-in kitchen adorned with granite countertops, radiant heated floors and tons of cabinets, a commodious dining area/or family room and large living room both with access to the private backyard/patio. A charming covered porch off the living room is perfect for intimate dining and gatherings. Upstairs, the primary bedroom offers a private deck for stargazing, walk-in closets and private bath, an oversized bedroom with separate study/walk-in closets/built-ins, hall bath, cozy family room/study (or nursery), plus a spacious loft bedroom (or an awesome home office) and/or gym with private bath with laundry hook-ups and multiple large closets. With an additional home office space with a separate entrance (perfect for guest/nanny) playroom and full bath in the lower level, hardwood floors, Pella Windows and five heating zones, this spacious home offers it all.
Learn more here.

45 Fenimore Road45 Fenimore Road

Scarsdale, NY 10583
Listing Price: $999,000
Walk to Elementary School, Metro North train and shops/farmer's market from this updated Scarsdale Colonial! This home boasts a sunny, open floor plan on the first level featuring a large living room, updated chef's kitchen with granite counters and stainless steel appliances, dining area and spacious family room with high ceilings, skylight and sliding doors to the patio and level, expansive yard. The first level also includes a full bath and attached two car garage. The second level includes a master bedroom, two large family bedrooms and an updated hall bath. The third level bonus space can be used creatively to work from home or play. The lower level includes laundry and storage space and opens to the side yard. Enjoy Scarsdale's excellent schools and fabulous amenities including parks, tennis courts and the Scarsdale town pool. Take advantage of the easy commute to Grand Central with a 32 minute express train and a short walk to the train station. Many recent updates throughout the house. A warm, bright and well-maintained home.
Learn more here.

Open Houses
937 Post Road937 Post Road

Scarsdale, NY 10583
Listing Price: $1,499,000
Open house 3/14/2021 12PM-2PM
The Cudner-Hyatt House, a unique pre-revolutionary Farmhouse, has been restored and reimagined with attention to detail, honoring the historical prominence of our agrarian past. Thoughtful restoration of exposed hand hewn beams, existing hardwood floors/doors compliments the new roof/gutters/wiring/plumbing/insulation/heating/cooling system. Conveniently located within walking distance to Scarsdale Village, markets/schools, this unique home has a tastefully designed costume kitchen with fireplace/separate mudroom/laundry room/adjoining family room/study, plus a private home office, half bathroom, living/dining room all adorned with the heirloom character of 1734. Upstairs, the main bedroom is divine with a custom outfitted walk-in closet, lux bathroom with double vanities/heated floors/stall shower/soaking tub, plus private back stair direct to the kitchen. Three additional bedrooms/hall bath. The lower level is a perfect play space with a distinctive area begging to be a wine room.
Learn more here.

47 Harlan Drive47 Harlan Drive

New Rochelle, NY 10804
Listing Price: $1,099,000
Open house 3/14/2021 12PM-2PM
Beautifully renovated and glowing with sunshine, this spacious six-bedroom, four-and-a-half bathroom Colonial is the perfect home. The state-of-the-art-kitchen is the heart of this home. The expansive granite island is the focal point for large gatherings of friends and family for all occasions. Special features include custom cabinetry, top of the line appliances, two dishwashers, two ovens, two sinks, warming drawer, microwave and 48" Viking refrigerator. Additional features include surround sound system, skylights, double height ceiling in family room, hardwood flooring and more. This warm and loving home has plenty of room for family, guests and great events.
Learn more here.

Leave a Comment

Share on Myspace