PHILIPSBURG–Despite a cease-and-desist letter from Lexwell Attorneys and administrative appeal against the building permit for Villa Sasha in Beacon Hill issued by Minister of Public Housing, Spatial Planning, Environment and Infrastructure VROMI Egbert Doran, developer Bernard Grosjean continues the pre-sale of apartments in Beacon Hill.
Facebook posts mention that three apartments in the disputed building have been sold.
Residents of Beacon Hill are convinced that the infrastructure of the area cannot handle the additional traffic resulting from increased density in the neighbourhood.
Contrary to what the name suggests, Villa Sasha is not a villa but a four-storey apartment building. The height and nature of this apartment complex, to be erected at Fan Coral Road 12 in Beacon Hill, with a communal swimming pool on a terrace at 13.76 metres high, violate the spatial development plan for the Beacon Hill area, attorney Caroline van Hees of Lexwell Attorneys at Law pointed out in the administrative appeal.
Jean Claude Tjordman, who is advertising the presale of the 12 Villa Sasha apartments on behalf of owner Bernard Grosjean, stated to The Daily Herald on Tuesday that he has no knowledge of a cease-and-desist letter from Lexwell Attorneys at Law. Grosjean received this letter on January 25, 2023, ordering him to stop demolition, construction and all related activities.
In the letter, attorney Van Hees pointed out to Grosjean that his parcel, like all other parcels in Beacon Hill, is subject to the Restrictive Covenants for Beacon Hill Estates. In the Restrictive Covenants it is mentioned, among other things, that no lot in the subdivision shall be used for other purposes than for a single family residence; as such, a maximum of one dwelling per parcel is imposed. Furthermore, permission is required for the architectural plans.
Beacon Hill is only accessible through one entryway and the neighbourhood has very limited parking space. The building of multiple apartments on the lot of Fan Coral Road 12, as well as the fact that no permission was received from the subdivider, are clear violations of the Restrictive Covenants, the attorney stated.
However, Doran issued a building permit on June 23, 2021, much to the dissatisfaction of Pride of Beacon Hill homeowner’s association and 13 individual property owners, who stated: “The Minister should have taken into account whether the infrastructure of the area can handle the additional traffic resulting from increased density in the neighbourhood.”
Residents foresee that the intended construction of 12 apartments at Fan Coral Road 12, as well as the Phoenician, a six-storey building with 30 apartments at Beacon Hill Road 16, will “affect the accessibility for emergency vehicles, but also the evacuation routes for the residents of Beacon Hill in case of emergency. This will potentially lead to life-threatening situations.”
The only access road to the peninsula, Beacon Hill Road, which passes Maho Beach, is already busy from tourists watching planes arrive and visiting the venues next to the beach. Residents say it is already difficult for residents of Beacon Hill to access and leave
Beacon Hill at times. “The roads in Beacon Hill are barely wide enough for two cars to pass.”
“As the Restrictive Covenants were filed in the Office of the Executive Council (Department of Public Works), the Minister must be aware of the Covenants,” the homeowners stated. In an email to Doran on May 18, 2021, Pride of Beacon Hill Association pointed out to the minister that the provisions of the covenants are included in the deeds of the property owners.
The Beacon Hill community also noted that the drawings for Villa Sasha that accompanied the application for the building permit and the drawings on the sales advertisement as shown on Facebook do not match.
The original drawings are based on 12 one-bedroom apartments; however, the new drawings show six two-bedroom apartments and six one-bedroom apartments.
The new drawings do not comply with the Parking Standards issued by the VROMI Ministry, the homeowners’ appeal states. “For every two-bedroom apartment, an extra parking spot is required according to the Parking Standards.”
At just 40 metres outside of the required obstacle-free zone for Princess Juliana International Airport, the apartment building is far too high to be so close to the runway, the complainants note. “Additionally, a building as high as the apartment complex in a surrounding with mainly low-rise buildings deprives the views towards the sea of the residents whose houses are located close to this building.” The homeowners fear this may result in depreciation of their properties.
Although the objection procedure against the issuing of the building permit by the VROMI Ministry is currently still pending, developer Sasha Management NV already completed demolition of the former family home at Fan Coral Road 12 and started advertising pre-sale of apartments.
Bron: Daily Herald