GETTING RESULTS, SLOWLY: West End Contractor Yard Coming into Compliance But Long Way to Go

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GETTING RESULTS, SLOWLY: West End Contractor Yard Coming into Compliance But Long Way to Go

September 23, 2015 - 20:34

Peduto Brothers Construction has refused to remove an illegal two-story steel structure

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NEW ROCHELLE, NY -- Last month, Talk of the Sound reported on City Code violations by Peduto Brothers Construction located at the end of 4th Street in New Rochelle’s West End. Neighbors have been complaining for years about various issues like parking, traffic, noise and violations of the terms of the Certificate of Occupancy for the property, a former coal yard which abuts the NorthEast rail corridor. Some of the complaints were valid others unfounded.

City officials were made aware of the valid complaints about violations and met with Nicholas Peduto, President of Peduto Brothers Construction. Peduto was instructed to bring the property into compliance with the terms under which the Certificate of Occupancy was granted. The results have been mixed. Con Edison and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority were also contacted. Con Edison stated that their trucks would no longer unload in the street. The MTA stated that they would inspect the property to determine if Peduto Brothers was encroaching on MTA property and dumping debris on their property.

Previous Violation #1 There must be a six-foot high stockade fence surrounding the entire property.

CURRENT STATUS = IN VIOLATION: There is not a six-foot high stockade fence surrounding the entire property, there is a chainlink fence around most but not all of the property.

Previous Violation #2 Stored materials not to exceed the height of the fence.

CURRENT STATUS = PARTIAL COMPLIANCE: The stored material has been unstacked and re-stacked so that it is largely out of view and does not exceed the height of the fence. An exception is the area abutting the MTA property. Also, construction equipment and more than a dozen trucks are visible over fence. 

Previous Violation #3 Property to be used to store materials and park trucks.

CURRENT STATUS = IN VIOLATION: Property is reportedly being used to perform automobile and truck mechanic work which is prohibited without proper permits.

Previous Violation #4 Heavy building equipment and machines not to be stored on the property.

CURRENT STATUS = IN VIOLATION: Heavy equipment continues to be stored on the property in violation of the Certificate of Occupancy - there was and still is a yellow excavator stored on the property.

Previous Violation #5 Work commenced before 8 a.m. and continued after 6 p.m.

CURRENT STATUS = IN VIOLATION: Work continues to commence before 8 a.m. and continues after 6 p.m.

Previous Violation #6 A two-story steel structure was built on the property without a building permit.

CURRENT STATUS = IN VIOLATION: Despite an agreement to remove the structure within 30 days, the structure remains 6 weeks later. A previous structure was ordered removed 2 years ago and was removed only to be replaced by the current structure.

Previous Violation #7 An above-ground diesel tank was added to the property without obtaining a required permit from the New Rochelle Fire Department and Peduto Brothers Construction was taking improper delivery of diesel fuel oil.

CURRENT STATUS = IN COMPLIANCE: New Rochelle Fire Chief Louis DiMeglio told Talk of the Sound that on August 18th an NRFD inspector visited the site on 4th Street prepared to issue a violation but Nicholas Peduto agreed to comply and dismantle the fuel tank, which has since occurred. No violation notice issued. Without a diesel tank, delivery of diesel fuel oil has ceased.

Previous Violation #8 A garage appears to have have been built partially on MTA property without a permit. Construction materials were piled in a haphazard manner on top of the garage, well-beyond the six-foot high limit, and some of the construction material had fallen off the garage onto what appeared to be MTA property.

CURRENT STATUS = IN COMPLIANCE: MTA Deputy Director for External Communications Aaron Donovan confirmed that Peduto Brothers had encroached on MTA property. The MTA Police visited the property more than a half-dozen times, spoke with people they came into contact with on site and at each inspection more debris was cleared off the property. A visit to the area by MTA Police earlier this week revealed that all that's left is a few railroad ties by the access gate, which Metro-North's track crews will remove.

Previous Violation #9 Con Edison trucks were making delivery of equipment to Peduto Brothers Construction without fully entering the property, instead unloading on 4th Street and thus blocking a public right-of-way while making delivery of heavy construction supplies.

CURRENT STATUS = IN VIOLATION: Despite claims to the contrary, Con Edison has continued to unload on 4th Street and block the public right-of-way.

Previous Violation #10 A cement mixer was installed without a permit on property leased by Peduto Brothers Construction on New York State Thruway Authority property.

CURRENT STATUS = IN COMPLIANCE: The cement mixer was dismantled.

While there has been some progress, the pace has been slow. In the case of the two-story steel structure Peduto has been defiant. As Talk of the Sound noted previously, when the City of New Rochelle fails to act on obvious, documented City Code violations or acts by issuing violations but fails to take enforcement action when those violations are ignored, it raises legitimate concerns of “selective enforcement” for other property owners who find themselves subject to enforcement for some of the same City Code violations. A precedent is set that can be used in court to justify all manner of City Code violations, a dangerous path towards property-use anarchy for the City of New Rochelle.

Talk of the Sound will continue to monitor the situation on 4th Street until each and every violation is corrected and the entire operation is brought into compliance.