Make this your home page

Letters to the Editor

Please type the number 5 below to submit

Sponsored Links

Bronxville Weather

°F | °C
invalid location provided
Home & Garden
Home & Garden

Bronxville in Bloom: A Pictorial by Neely Bower and Allaire Warner PDF Print Email


By N. Bower and A. Warner

May 15, 2019:  MyhometownBronxville photographers Neely Bower and Allaire Warner capture the beauty of Bronxville in spring in the photos below.  


























Boulder Ledge Garden Club Makes Bicentennial Park Sparkle for the Summer Season PDF Print Email


By Liz Hoskinson, Member, Boulder Ledge Garden Club

May 8, 2019:  Members of the Boulder Ledge Garden Club (“BLGC”) gathered on April 23 to help Bicentennial Park sparkle for the upcoming summer season. On the corner of Pondfield Road and Meadow Avenue in Bronxville, the park is one of seven parks strategically located throughout the Village of Bronxville, offering a lovely respite at any time of day. 

BLGC members jumped right in, with top guidance provided once again by Ani Adishian, who not only serves as horticulturalist for Sarah Lawrence College and other properties but served as the little park’s landscaper back in 2012, when it went through an update that was completed in 2014.   

BLGC members weeded out the tulip and daffodil beds, re-shaped the spirea and rose bushes, lopped tree branches, and generally tended to the wide variety of plants that populate the 40-year-old park. Ani provided excellent gardening tips, such as the value of judiciously thinning out the hedges, which can allow air and light to penetrate and promote healthy growth. 

Everyone also took a moment to admire the two new native-species red maples recently planted adjacent to the park on Meadow Avenue. These trees were purchased by BLGC to assist the village to replace trees lost to recent storms.  

After a nearly two-hour effort, Bicentennial Park was cleaned up, with all the plants looking healthy and happy and BLGC members pleased with their contribution to the upkeep and aesthetics of the village.  

Pictured here (L to R): Ani Adishian, Marty Meserole, Lisa Harrington, Jane Scotti, Gloria Bisaccia, Lisa Purdy, Elisabeth Holland, Liz Hoskinson, Susan Bettino, Eileen Marshall, Bea Welch, Wendy Murphy, and Ann Bernstein. 

Photo by N. Bower
Editor's note: As a public service, MyhometownBronxville publishes articles from local institutions, officeholders, and individuals. MyhometownBronxville does not fact-check statements therein, and any opinions expressed therein do not necessarily reflect the thinking of its staff.
New Hedges and Bricks on Midland Avenue Median PDF Print Email


By Staff

May 1, 2019:  Did you notice the new hedges and bricks on the Midland Avenue median? 

The new hedges were planted last week and paid for by Con Edison, who dug them up last year when they replaced an old 12-inch cast-iron main under Midland Avenue with a new 16-inch steel main. Jim Palmer, Bronxville Village Administrator, mentioned at that time that the new main was needed “to satisfy additional gas demands in the village.” 

You also may have noticed that there are new yellow bricks on either side of the hedges. According to Palmer, these bricks were purchased when the Bronxville Historical Conservancy and the village rebuilt one of the yellow brick roads on the Hilltop in 2016. Palmer noted that the hedges on Midland “act as a traffic-calming measure and the bricks provide greater visibility ... something asked for by our residents.”

Palmer also noted that the village still has the old bricks from the Hilltop brick road and will use them to repair existing sections of the other brick roads on the Hilltop.

Pictured here:  Hedges and new brick on Midland Avenue median.

Photo by A. Warner

Gung-Hoe Gardener: Time to Focus on What to Plant this Spring PDF Print Email


By Neely Bower

Apr. 24, 2019:  I hope you are all enjoying the daffodils that I suggested you plant last fall. While you are doing that, it is time to focus on when and what to plant this spring. Here are a few things to keep in mind and where to go for the best advice. I would suggest the home gardening page of the Cornell Cooperative Extension website. You can learn many things about gardening and maybe even a little botanical Latin. 

The first thing to learn is the hardiness zone of your area. The USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map divides the country into zones based on the average annual minimum winter temperature. Hardiness describes a plant's ability to survive in different temperatures, and the hardiness zones are used by gardeners to ascertain where different plants would grow best. The zone here in Bronxville is the first thing to learn. If you plant too early or too late for our zone, the plant will not thrive. Our zone is 7-8. This has changed over the years because of global warming. There is an area at the New York Botanical Garden called the “Lady’s Border” that grows many plants and shrubs that are not usually hardy here but have become so with zone changes, such as certain camellias and magnolias. 

You are on your own for purchasing plants for your new garden. I find the cheaper the better unless the plant is damaged or has bugs. I do not recommend starting from seed unless you have a greenhouse. Then you would already know more than I do. If you purchase plants from Stew Leonard's or Home Depot, check with Cornell Cooperative Extension first because those stores are apt to put plants out too soon.

Pictured here: Flowering quince from my garden on April 14.

Photo by N. Bower



Bronxville Building Inspector Paul Taft Answers Frequently Asked Questions PDF Print Email


By Susan Miele

Feb. 27, 2019:  Preparing a home construction project—whether renovating the kitchen, adding a deck, or erecting a fence—can be challenging enough with collecting bids and coping with the disruption. But starting a project without an understanding of municipal requirements can result in a longer-term headache. To help the community avert such a scenario, we set out to identify common questions and pitfalls and get authoritative guidance.

Enter Paul Taft, who assumed the role of building inspector for the Village of Bronxville Building Department in September. In addition to bringing his expertise in code enforcement and years of experience as a residential contractor, Paul brings to his role a commitment to community education. In fact, he’s busy planning a building-safety event for May 11 in recognition of Building Safety Month.

To provide a resource to homeowners, we worked with Paul to create a list of frequently asked questions to help ensure a successful project and minimal uncertainty. He emphasizes that each project is unique, so it’s important to contact the building department to ensure that your project is on the right track.

Q: What is the role of the building department?

A: The building inspector is responsible for enforcement of state codes and local laws regarding construction, building use, fire safety, and signage. The building inspector issues construction permits, administers and enforces building and zoning regulations, and issues certificates of occupancy. The building inspector is responsible for administering the New York State Uniform Fire Prevention and Building Code and for issuing summonses for violations to the codes when necessary.


Q: Do I need a permit for my project?

A: The list of work requiring a building permit is extensive. While residents generally are aware of the need to obtain a permit to build a new home, demolish a structure, or create an extension, a permit is also needed for the finishing of basements and attics, roofing, new heating and air conditioning, new/replacement windows, generator installation/replacement, electrical work, plumbing, gas work, accessory structures, new driveways and parking areas, and renovation of bathrooms and kitchens. Minor permits include siding, fences, sheds, and oil tanks. Importantly, this list is not all-inclusive. Consult the building department before initiating a home project to ensure necessary permits are obtained.

Q: What is the typical time frame for obtaining a permit?

A: The building department has set a goal to issue permits in a timely fashion. Please expect that, depending on the size and complexity of a project, a building permit will take two to four weeks to obtain. Much depends on the completeness of the application, plan review complexity, and workload. This time frame does not include the time the applicant might need to respond to plan review.

Q: What fees are associated with permits?

A: Building Permit Application Fee, $150.00; building permit fee, $15 per $1,000 of the estimated cost of the job; electrical permit, $100.00; plumbing permit, $100 for the first three fixtures and $10 for each additional fixture; mechanical permit, $100 and $10 per each additional condenser; certificate of occupancy, residential, $125.00; commercial, $200.00; amendment, $100 and $15 per $1,000 of the estimated cost of the job; re-inspection fee, $100. The affidavit of final cost must be filled out with each application, and if the actual cost of the work ends up exceeding the estimated cost of the building permit, the applicant pays $15 per $1,000 in excess of the original estimate.

Q: When does a homeowner need to have his/her project considered by the zoning board, planning board, or design review committee?

A: Most single-family residential properties are exempt from review by the planning department and design review committee. They may be required to apply to the board of appeals (zoning board) for an area variance. The application to the board of appeals is a separate application from the building permit. If the proposed work can’t comply with the Village of Bronxville zoning code, then an appeal to the zoning board for relief of the code is what you are seeking.

Q: May I start work before my permit is issued?

A: Work on a project may not legally begin before a permit is obtained and displayed on the work site. Some cleanup and clearing may begin before the building permit is issued. Consult the building department for more information.

Q: What happens if I build without a permit or with an expired permit?

A: We all will sell our homes at some point. We have found that title search companies are reviewing property files very carefully and finding that work may have been done without the benefit of a building permit or have expired permits. If you may have had work performed without a building permit, serious consideration must be given to getting it legalized to ensure a safe home. If you have an expired permit, it is important to address that, as occupying the work area is not allowed until a certificate of occupancy has been obtained.

Q: What kind of restitution might a homeowner need to make if work has already been done without having obtained a permit?

A: Work started without first obtaining a building permit would need to be legalized. The owner is required to apply for a building permit for the work that was done illegally. Legalization fees that apply are as follows: legalization fee of $250 added to the $150 application fee, and the building permit fee gets doubled. Once the building permit is issued for the legalization, the owner would apply for a certificate of occupancy for the legalization. The legalization fee of $250 is also added to the certificate of occupancy fee. 

Q: What building code is used in Bronxville? 

A: The New York State 2017 Uniform Code, which is a supplement to the 2015 ICC family of codes

Code Enforcement

Q: What do I do if my neighbor and I are having a dispute regarding the boundary line of our properties?

A: Boundary disputes (unless concerning a municipal boundary) are private legal matters and are not within the jurisdiction of the municipality. Consult an attorney for legal advice. This is also the case for trees on private property.

Q: At what times of day is construction work allowed?

A: The following work–excavation, demolition, alterations, or repair of any building–may only be conducted Monday to Friday 8:00 am to 6:00 pm, but not on any such day that is a state or national holiday, except in the case of urgent necessity and then only with a permit from the superintendent of buildings, which permit may be renewed for a period of three days or less while the emergency continues.

Q: How do I file a complaint?

A: All complaints may be submitted in writing. A complaint form may be found on the Village of Bronxville’s website.

Home Safety

Q: Apart from construction projects, what safety requirements must Bronxville homeowners adhere to?

1) Smoke Detectors and Carbon Monoxide Detectors. The most common deficiency in a home is the lack of proper protection with smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors. Check your home or building for the proper quantity and placement of smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors. Regardless of the age of your home, requirements are as follows:

  • Smoke detectors. One in each bedroom and/or sleeping area; one outside of the bedroom and/or sleeping area; and one on each level.

  • Carbon-monoxide detectors. Outside of the bedroom and/or sleeping area within 15 feet of the sleeping area; one on each level.

A state law going into effect on April 1, 2019, requires solely battery-operated smoke detectors to have a nonremovable 10-year battery.

2) House Numbers. House numbers are required for all properties. When there is an emergency, time is of the essence. Click here for further details on the requirements for numbering. Section 505 Premise Identification.

3) Extension Cords. Another common risk is from the use of extension cords or multi-tap outlet strips. The use of these should be minimized. They must not be covered, as doing so can cause them to overheat and ignite. Outlet strips are designed for a maximum load, which should not be exceeded to avoid fire.

“We have been busy working to make our processes more streamlined and efficient,” Taft said. Questions and comments can be sent to CLOAKING .

Pictured here: Paul Taft.
Photo by A. Warner


<< Start < Prev 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Next > End >>

Sign Up For Newsletter

MyhometownBroxnville reserves the right to monitor and remove all comments.  For more information on Posting Rules, please review our Rules and Terms of Use, both of which govern the use and access of this site.  Thank you.

The information presented here is for informational purposes only. While every effort has been made to present accurate information, myhometownBronxville, LLC, does not in any way accept responsibility for the accuracy of or consequences from the use of this information herein. We urge all users to independently confirm any information provided herein and consult with an appropriate professional concerning any material issue of fact or law. The views and opinions expressed by the writers, event organizers and advertisers do not necessarily represent those of myhometownBronxville, LLC, its officers, staff or contributors. The use of this website is governed by the Terms of Use . No portion of this publication may be reproduced or redistributed, either in whole or part, without the express written consent of the publisher.

Copyright © 2009, All rights reserved.