GOSHEN – The lawsuit against the proposed Merlin Legoland amusement park in the Town of Goshen has been dismissed by Orange County Supreme Court Justice Robert Onofry.
The Article 78 suit, filed by Concerned Citizens for the Hudson Valley and several area residents, sought to enjoin the Goshen Town Planning Board from acting as lead agency and require the town to request, and compel, the state DEC to assume the lead agency role; enjoin the planning board from holding a meeting on the proposed local laws until it has prepared a GEIS; order the planning board to rescind its acceptance of Merlin’s revised DEIS; order the completion of a proper DEIS, enjoin any further action on the project until submission of that document; and order the town and planning board to allow adequate time for public review and commentary on any final DEIS.
Orange County Partnership President Maureen Halahan was pleased with
the ruling and she said Merlin has been transparent throughout the entire
“They have held rallies, they have had open forums; they have opened an office in downtown Goshen, which remains open every day,” she said. “They sponsor all kinds of events; they have hosted tours in their state of Florida to their Legoland properties. They try to disperse more information and be very, very transparent through the process.”
Halahan expects the Goshen Town Planning Board to approve the project shortly.
But attorney Michael Sussman, who represents the anti-Legoland faction, said the project’s draft environmental impact statement is “a travesty.” He pledged to carefully review the final EIS and “if the deficiencies are not cured, we will, rest assured, make those responsible account in a substantive court challenge.” In the meantime, Sussman said he hopes local politicians “divorce themselves from this project, which represents classic spot zoning and will destroy wetlands, farmlands and species.”