November 3, 2003   


The Chairman, Paddy Culbert called the meeting to order at 7:30 pm.


The Acting Secretary, Ms. Gael Ouellette, called the roll:



Paddy Culbert, Peter McNamara, Henry DeLuca, Gael Ouellette, Selectmen Representative Hal Lynde, Alternate Raymond Brunelle, Planning Director Will D’Andrea




Bill Scanzani, Robin Bousa, Alternate Bob Yarmo


Mr. Culbert informed that Mr. Brunelle would vote in Mr. Scanzani’s absence. 




Map 4 Lot 139 - Collin’s Way, LLC - Request for Bond Reduction


Mr. McNamara stepped down.


Mr. D’Andrea said after research, it was found that the waterline extension was not part of the original bonded work for Collins Way down the existing section of Longview Circle.  He said the waterline extension was originally bonded with the Meadowview subdivision.  He said that former Interim Planning Director Clay Mitchell sent a letter in August to the developer and the property owner making them aware of the driveway relocation requirement; there was also notification in the letter that a bond reduction would not be forthcoming until the driveway issue was resolved.  He said to date, the driveway issue was not yet resolved.  Mr. Culbert said that a letter would be sent to the developer to find out what the timetable would be to bring the waterline down Meadowview to Mammoth Road, understanding that the bond would not be reduced until the work was complete. 


Mr. Peter McNamara, Jeremy Hill Road confirmed that the Meadowview bond would cover the extension of the waterline.  Mr. D’Andrea said the existing bond covered 5400linear feet of waterline extensions. 


Mr. Culbert said Collins Way would not be released due to the driveway issue.  He reiterated that a letter would be sent out to the developer of Meadowview questioning when the waterline would be installed down to Mammoth Road.  He said the letter would contain a time limit for response from the developer. 


Mr. McNamara asked if the extension was specifically bonded.  Mr. D’Andrea said the linear waterline footage was included in the bond.  Mr. Culbert said that the letter to the developer would be specific with its language.


Mr. Robert Peterson, 9 Shelley Drive asked if the entire bond would be held until the driveway issue was cleared.  Mr. Culbert answered yes.  Mr. Peterson said he was the previous owner of the Collins Way property, which was sold in January.  He said in an effort to move forward, he had a met with previous Planning Director Amy Alexander who informed him to pave the driveway (which was also the request of TFMoran the former Town’s engineer).  He said he didn’t have a problem with moving the driveway, and explained that because the property was sold, he would have to work with the present owner regarding the driveway.  Mr. Peterson said he met with Mr. Mitchell to review the Planning Board meeting minutes; the minutes did not contain information as to where the driveway should be relocated to. 


Mr. Culbert reviewed the bond information; the original bond was $437,000, per the recommendation of the Town engineer the bond would be reduced by  $280,300 to retain $156,700.  Mr. Culbert felt that the retained amount should be adequate for the required additional work.


Mr. Lynde noted that there had been a lot of siltation during the last storm and wanted to know the cause.  Mr. Peterson said because there were other developments, he was unsure what would cause the sitation.  He said he had added hay bales and silt fencing, but would review.  Mr. Culbert said if the silting problem was due to clearing during construction, he expected Mr. Peterson to correct the problem.



(Ouellette/Brunelle) To approve a bond reduction of $280,300 (from the original $437,000), which would retain $156,700.  Approval granted with the understanding that the driveway would be relocated and the remaining work completed.  




(5 - 0 - 1) The motion carries.  Mr. McNamara had stepped down.


Mr. McNamara returned to the Board.


Map 4 Lot 180-14 - Two M Construction & Development Co., LLC - Benoit Avenue Extension - Request for Bond Reduction


Mr. D’Andrea informed the Board that the road had not yet been finished.  Mr. Culbert said there was supposed to be an extension of approximately 100ft that had not yet been completed. 



(DeLuca/McNamara) To deny the bond reduction request until the road extension was completed per the plan.  




(6 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.  The bond was not reduced.


Map 3-88 & 91 - David Mendes - View Point Estates - Priscilla Way Station 0+00 to 16+50, Melissa Circle, Megan Circle - Request for Full Bond Release and recommendation to be placed on the Town Ballot to be accepted as a Town road. 


Mr. D’Andrea said Mr. Mendes would like the roads to be placed on Town ballot for acceptance.  Ms. Ouellette confirmed that Highway Road agent had reviewed the roads.  Mr. Culbert answered yes.  Mr. D’Andrea said that TFMoran confirmed through their records that the road was complete.  There was a brief discussion regarding the Town’s procedure for holding a percentage of a bond; it was decided that the Board would retain 10% of the bond until the road was accepted at Town Meeting as a Town road in the event something happened to the road between now and acceptance.     



(DeLuca/Ouellette) To approve a reduction of the bond, retaining $5,579 (10%), until such time as the road is accepted as a Town road at Town Meeting.   




(6 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.


Mr. Lynde told Mr. D’Andrea that a letter should be sent to the Selectmen listing the roads that the Planning Board recommended for acceptance at Town Meeting. 


Map 9 Lot 136 - David Mendes - May Lane, May Lane Extension, Velma Circle, Ellsworth Lane - Request for Full Bond Release and recommendation to be placed on the Town Ballot to be accepted as a Town road.



(DeLuca/Ouellette) To approve a reduction of the bond, retaining $9,130 (10%) until such time as the road is accepted as a Town road at Town Meeting.




(6 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.


Map 12 Lot 212 - David Mendes - Matthew Drive - Request for Full Bond Release and recommendation to be placed on the Town Ballot to be accepted as a Town road.



(DeLuca/Brunelle) To approve a reduction of the bond, retaining $1,870 (10%) until such time as the road is accepted as a Town road at Town Meeting. 




(6 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.


Map 10 Lot 352 Phase I & III - New American Homes - Cara Estates - Request for Bond Reduction


Mr. Culbert informed that the request would be continued to an upcoming meeting until additional information was obtained.




Cormier & Saurman Building, LLC - Sherburne Road - Proposed 13-Lot Subdivision for Preliminary Discussion


Ms. Ouellette informed the Board that one of the applicants had performed work for her in the past.  Neither the Board, nor the applicant had a problem with Ms. Ouellette staying on the Board to hear the case. 


Mr. Dave Brouillet, Herbert Associates, representing the applicant provided the Board with the plan.  He noted that the Board had approved an abutting subdivision in the past (Autumn, Keilty and Litchfield Circle).  He noted that a proposed right-of-way had been retained at the end of Litchfield Circle, and wanted to know if the Board preferred that the proposed subdivision have a cul-de-sac, or a connection to Litchfield Circle.  He said there were potential problems with connection the roads, such as impact to a wet area, as well as the lot configuration which would create an ‘S’ curve in the roadway.  Mr. Brouillet said the applicant’s preference was to construct a cul-de-sac.  He noted that there would be a small WCD impact and a possible slight wetland impact at the cul-de-sac.  He asked the Board for direction regarding the cul-de-sac. 


Mr. Lynde asked for clarification of the wetlands that would be affected.  Mr. Brouillet pointed where the wetlands had been flagged on their property and said there would be a wetland impact to connect the two roadways.  He noted that the cul-de-sac was proposed at 1300ft.  Mr. DeLuca asked what the benefit would be to connecting the two roadways.  Mr. Culbert said one benefit would be two accesses to the parcel.  Mr. Lynde noted that another benefit would be the ease of plowing during the winter months.  After further discussion, the Board members agreed that further information would be needed with regard to the wetland impact before a judgment could be made about road connection. 


Mr. McNamara asked if there were any slope problems.  Mr. Brouillet believed that the proposed roadway design was approximately 5%. 


Mr. Culbert said based upon what was presented, the only issue was possible wetland impacts.  Mr. Brouillet said another issue was the geometry of the lots for connection to Litchfield Circle. 


True and Paul Gauvin, 2 Applewood Road, were concerned with the possibility of adding traffic to an already busy street.  They noted that the bend of the road was a dangerous area that may need a street light.  Mr. Culbert said that no action could be taken at this time since the Board had not yet accepted the plan for consideration.  Mr. DeLuca reviewed the process of plan review.  Mr. Brouillet informed that abutters would receive notice when the formal application was submitted for review. 




Map 4 Lot 185 - Geoffrey Detellis - Benoit Avenue - Proposed 4-Lot Subdivision and Seeking Special Permit for Wetland Crossing for continued consideration


Mr. Dave Brouillet, Herbert Associates said that comments had been received from Defresne-Henry on Friday, October 31, 2003 and had not been able to evaluate them.  He requested that the application be date specified to the next meeting.  The Board granted the continuation, but provided no guarantee that the application would be heard. 


Date specified to December 1, 2003. 




Map 1 Lot 46 - Carl Melanson & Cheri Driscoll - 59 Mammoth Road - Proposed Site Plan Review to re-open pre-existing variety store.


Ms. Ouellette read the list of abutters aloud. There were no persons who did not have their name read, or who had a problem with notification.


Ms. Cheri Driscoll and Mr. Carl Melanson, 59 Mammoth Road met with the Board to review their application.  Ms. Dricoll explained that the Zoning Board of Adjustment (‘ZBA’) had granted a variance (Case #2249) on March 10, 2003 to reopen the Mammoth Road Variety Store (formally Esther’s Variety).  She was unsure why she had to meet with the Planning Board.


Mr. Culbert said some of his concerns were: 1) entrance; 2) parking; 3) lighting; 4) hours of operation.  Ms. Ouellette noted that the file contained a letter dated July 25, 2003 (composed by former Interim Planning Director Clay Mitchell), which indicated the steps that the applicants should follow for site plan review.  Ms. Driscoll provided the Board with a copy of the approved Variance that contained stipulations for approval. 


Mr. McNamara (also the Chairman of the ZBA) provided the Board with information regarding the Variance granted by the ZBA.  He said the application was fairly complicated that took several months to review, and was eventually approved with a 3 - 2 vote.  He said there had been discussion regarding the possibility of site access from Bowley Drive, parking and the present condition of the building (interior in need of several upgrades) which would not pass current codes.  Mr. Culbert said that there were various regulations that would need to be met, such as code enforcement, health, plumbing, electrical, septic, etc. 


Ms. Driscoll  continued her review of the proposed plan and said they would consider alternate access from Bowley Drive.  She said they configured eighteen parking spaces plus two handicap spots.  She said they configured eighteen feet clearance around the store for emergency vehicle access; trash containers and lighting had been added on all four sides of the building; shrubs on the corner of Bowley and Mammoth were proposed.  Mr. McNamara said another concern of the ZBA was the appearance of the exterior and perhaps the Planning Board could set some conditions.  Ms. Driscoll informed that they had done approximately $50,000 in work to ‘dress up’ the house.  She said the intention would be to ‘dress up’ the store building and bring it up to code, but wanted to ensure that they could do something with the building before investing additional money.  She said the vehicles previously for sale had been removed, and the only vehicles remaining were the cars driven daily. 


Mr. Culbert inquired about the requested hours of operation.  Mr. Melanson said they were requesting the same normal operating hours in Town.  Ms. Driscoll would like to remain open later than 9pm.  Ms. Ouellette was concerned with late store hours because of the location being in a residential area.  Ms. Driscoll said they were being taxed commercially.  Mr. Lynde said the building may be assessed different; there was no separate tax for commercial it was the same rate as residential. 


Mr. Culbert wanted to know what calculation was used for the parking spaces.  Ms. Driscoll said the spaces were based upon the square footage of the store (retail usage).  Mr. Culbert reiterated his concerns as: 1) parking (and the calculation used); 2) site access; 3) the need for health inspector and code enforcement review and approval; 4) exterior appearance; 5) possibility of curbing in front.  Mr. Melanson noted that former Planning Director Amy Alexander was the person who configured the parking and shrubbery. 


Mr. Lynde was concerned with the lighting and wanted to ensure that it would not shine in the roadway, or create light pollution for the neighbors.  Ms. Driscoll said they would probably add motion detector lights on the four sides of the building.  Mr. Culbert said the lighting had to be specific on the plan, as well as specifically noting the lumens.  Ms. Driscoll did not know the lumens, but said she would address any needs of the Board. 




Ms. Svetlana Beloritsky, 50 Mammoth Road, asked how many clients were expected, based upon the current traffic pattern.  Ms. Driscoll didn’t feel that additional traffic would be generated.  Ms. Beloritsky wanted to know how many cars would stop at the store.  Ms. Driscoll didn’t have an answer.  Mr. Culbert believed the question would be a business decision.  Ms. Beloritsky asked if there would be additional parking behind the building and wanted to know where the applicant’s personal cars would be located.  Ms. Driscoll said the property behind the store would need to be used for parking; her personal cars would be located between the store and the house.  Mr. Culbert explained that there was a specific regulation in connection with parking.  Ms. Beloritsky was concerned with her driveway being used by store clientele and felt that the additional traffic would be a detriment to her home.  She asked that the access to the store be self contained.  Mr. Culbert said the applicant would need to meet the requirements for parking.  Ms. Driscoll said there would be adequate parking.  Mr. Culbert that the plans would need to be engineered and evaluated to ensure they met regulations.  Ms. Beloritsky said she would like additional information.  Her main concern was lighting and would rather not have lights shine directly into her home.  Mr. Culbert said regulations were in place that reviewed lighting requirements.         


Mr. DeLuca explained that specific information was required to be indicated on the plan presented to the Board.  He said the information was necessary so that applicants and inspectors would have guidelines to follow and important so that both the applicant and the Town would be protected. 


Mr. Culbert didn’t feel that the submitted plan could be accepted by the Board for consideration.  The Board suggested that Ms. Driscoll review the requirements for Site Plan Review and have the plan engineered before submitting again.    


Ms. Driscoll withdrew her application without prejudice.  Mr. D’Andrea said he would schedule an agenda item once the plans were submitted to the Planning Department.  Ms. Driscoll was informed that a new application would need to be submitted, which included repaying the fees, she may request a reduction in the site plan application fee.  The abutters would have to be renotified.   


Map 6 Lot 162-1 & 3 - V & G Development Corporation - Brianna Estates - Lot Line Adjustment for submission


Ms. Ouellette read the list of abutters aloud. There were no persons who did not have their name read, or who had a problem with notification.


Mr. David Kelley, Landtech   representing the applicant met with the Board to review the proposed lot line adjustment.  He informed that he had met with the Board in February, 2003 for the approval of Brianna Estates.  At that time the approval was granted based upon the fact that all the roadway access, utilities, drainage, site work etc. was contained in Dracut, MA.  Mr. Kelley said since the approval, the owner of Lot 3R (Mr. Gagnon) decided to give his daughter (owner of Lot 1) additional land (total acreage of Lot 1would be approximately 11.5 acres).  Mr. Culbert confirmed that the lot would be non-buildable.  Mr. Kelley said Lot 1 would be considered a single lot, not to be further subdivided (as per original approval).    


Ms. Ouellette asked if all the setbacks (including the existing tennis court) had been complied with.  Mr. Kelley answered yes.  He informed that the tennis court had a gravel base. 


Mr. DeLuca asked why there was a jog in the lot line.  Mr. Kelley said the lot line followed an existing fence line.  There was a brief discussion regarding the setback for the fence around the tennis court.  Mr. D’Andrea said the Town didn’t regulate fences and therefore there was no setback requirement. 


There was no public input.


Ms. Ouellette asked if the new lot line would interfere with the septic and well.  Mr. Kelley said that the lot was serviced by Dracut utilities.  Mr. McNamara asked if the lot line change would relieve the Town of Dracut of the responsibility for schooling, emergency access etc.  Mr. Kelley answered no.   



(Lynde/McNamara) To accept the plan for consideration.




(6 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.




(Lynde/Brunelle) To approve the plans as submitted for Brianna Estates lot line adjustment. 




(6 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.




Mr. Lynde asked what the status was of Honey Lane.  Mr. D’Andrea said he would follow up and provide Mr. Lynde the status. 


Zoning Board of Adjustment (‘ZBA’) seeking comment from Planning Board regarding ZBA Case No. 2269 & 2264 (No public discussion will take place)


Mr. McNamara (ZBA Chairman) said the ZBA requested Planning Board comment regarding an issue involving Case #2264.  He explained that there was a lot whose only frontage was on a 50ft. right-of-way off of St. Margaret’s Drive; the parcel is landlocked.  It was believed that the right-of-way was left with the assumption that there would be further development; however the right-of-way cannot be continued because there was building on the end of it.  Mr. McNamara said the owner of the lot has requested a variance for insufficient frontage.  He said the ZBA wanted to know the feeling of the Board and if the 50ft. right-of-way could be used as a private driveway.  If the variance is granted, the only access to the lot would be over the right-of-way.  Mr. Lynde felt the issue may be something the Selectmen should review, if the right-of-way is owned by the Town.  He suggested seeking Town Counsel’s opinion.  He noted that there were several options that could be reviewed.  The Board discussed other cases in which a right-of-way was used to access a parcel and decided that Town Counsel’s opinion should be obtained. 


Mr. McNamara then discussed ZBA Case #2269 in which there was a question regarding the classification of Seavey Road.  He said the owner was seeking to carve out a twenty-nine acre parcel whose only access was over an existing driveway onto Seavey Road (under 200ft. frontage); the owner cannot obtain additional frontage due to wetland issues.  Mr. McNamara said the ZBA wanted to know the Board’s feeling to creating a twenty-nine lot subdivision onto the existing road.  Mr. Culbert did not believe that Seavey Road was a road.  Mr. Lynde believed that cul-de-sac length would also be a problem.  He said improvements may need to be made to the entire length of the roadway.  Mr. McNamara said that the parcel had frontage onto the other portion of Seavey Road.  Mr. Culbert believed there were discussions regarding Seavey Road a few years ago. 


Mr. D’Andrea said the issue was complicated.  He informed that the owner had previously gone to the Selectmen and obtained a ‘hold harmless’ agreement (from the late 1980’s) for the driveway, which lead him to believe that the road was Class VI.  He suggested Town Counsel review. 


Mr. Culbert said he could never approve a road going through a driveway. 

Mr. Lynde suggested that the owner contact the Open Space Committee regarding the possibility of selling land to the Town. 




October 6, 2003


(DeLuca/Brunelle) To approve the October 6, 2003 meeting minutes as amended.




(6 - 0 - 0) The motion carries. 


October 20, 2003


(Ouellette/Lynde) To approve the October 20, 2003 meeting minutes as amended.




(6 - 0 - 0) The motion carries. 




December 1, 2003:

Map 4 Lot 185 - Geoffrey Detellis - Benoit Avenue - Proposed 4-Lot Subdivision and Seeking Special Permit for Wetland Crossing for continued consideration





(Lynde/McNamara) To adjourn the meeting.




(6 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.


The meeting was adjourned at approximately 9:20pm.

                                                                                          Respectfully submitted,


                                                                                          Charity A. L. Willis

                                                                                          Recording Secretary