Neck Road Development Loses Building Permit as Town Waits for Engineering Results

Recent construction at 16 Neck Road in Old Lyme, CT (CT Examiner)

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OLD LYME — Work on a subdivision at 16 Neck Road was placed on hold Tuesday because required road quality test results due last week had not been received in the land use office, but the project developer says the work is up to code and being properly supervised.

Eric Knapp, the town’s land use coordinator, told CT Examiner that the test results were due by Feb. 29 and that he had waited to hear from the developer until Tuesday before putting a hold on the building permit for one house under construction. 

Knapp told CT Examiner in email on Wednesday that the road testing results had come in Wednesday morning and they had been forwarded to the town engineer for review. But, Knapp warned, there were potential issues with the testing process. 

“Our engineer has already pointed out that since no one from the town was present when they were collected, they might be from anywhere. So we will need to ascertain some sort of chain of custody over when and where they were taken from and how they were delivered to the testing company,” he said. 

But Frank Nocito, who is developing the 12.3-acre parcel as Keystone Capital Corp., told CT Examiner by phone on Tuesday that all testing has been done to code and that he has hired Jacobson Engineering to supervise the work, as directed by the town. 

“Everything that has been done there is to code. We have hired everybody that we’ve been asked to,” said Nocito. “We’re doing everything possible to ensure the safety and to ensure that everything in the project is done to code. We don’t do anything wrong.” 

In early January, Nocito was ordered to conduct testing for construction of the road and to install erosion controls. 

Nocito told CT Examiner that the testing had been done but the results may not have arrived at town hall yet. 

“The testing has been done. We do it, but it takes longer to bring it into the town or something like that, but everything’s been done,” he said.

Knapp said that while the hold was specifically for work at one house, he believed work should cease on the subdivision road until the tests results were in. 

“At this point I don’t really think they should be working on the road until we know if the road is actually the right depth and the right materials … The reality is that the next step should be receiving the information about the road compaction as far as materials, density and depth of the subbase.” 

Knapp said to his knowledge, Nocito also had not paid to have Jacobson Engineering supervise the work, as was stipulated. 

“[The] developer also asked that I forward the Jacobson fee estimate again, so that may be forthcoming,” Knapp said on Wednesday. 

In the Tuesday call, Nocito pitched the project location and the quality of the finished houses. 

“We love the location. We love to work there. The site is beautiful. It’s going to be absolutely stunning. As you can see it has a private entrance and all that,” he said. “The houses are all beautifully designed. I wish I could stop the noise of the highway, but unfortunately it’s there.” 

He said the project was an economic boost to the area and will grow the town’s grand list. 

“We’re bringing in jobs. We’re doing everything. We’re bringing huge taxes for the city,” Nocito said.