APPROVED

 

TOWN OF PELHAM

PLANNING BOARD WORK SESSION

December 1, 2003   

 

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

 

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

 

PRESENT:

Paddy Culbert, Peter McNamara, Bill Scanzani (arrived after the meeting had commenced), Henry DeLuca, Gael Ouellette, Robin Bousa, Selectmen Representative Hal Lynde (arrived after the meeting commenced), Alternate Bob Yarmo (arrived after the meeting commenced), Planning Director Will D’Andrea

 

ABSENT:

 

Alternate Raymond Brunelle

 

ADMINISTRATIVE

 

Map 4 Lot 180-14 - Two M Construction - Benoit Avenue Extension - Request for Bond Reduction

 

Mr. D’Andrea said there had been some discussion at prior Planning Board meetings regarding the request for bond reduction.  The owner/developer had requested to meet with the Board regarding discussions that had occurred in the field.

 

Neither the owner/developer nor their representative was present for a discussion with the Board. 

 

The Board date specified the discussion to the December 15, 2003.  If an additional December meeting is not scheduled, the discussion will be date specified to the January 5, 2003 meeting.

 

OLD BUSINESS

 

Map 11 Lot 93 - Cormier & Saurman Building, LLC - Dutton Road - Proposed Elderly Housing for Site Plan Review and Seeking Special Permit for Wetland Crossing for continued consideration

 

Ms. Ouellette stepped down.

 

Mr. Dave Brouillet of Herbert Associates, representing the applicant, presented the plan the Board.  He noted that the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) was delivered to the Planning Department on December 25, 2003, however it had not yet been reviewed by the Board’s consultant.  He said that the plan (with the exception of the EIA) had been already been reviewed by the Conservation Commission.  Now that the EIA has been submitted, he said they could meet with the commission again if the Board desired.   

 

Mr. Lynde arrived and stepped down. 

 

Mr. Brouillet said the wetland impact would be approximately 500SF.  He said since the time of submission (May, 2003) all studies had been done and they had met with the Town’s engineer to address the comments/concerns about the drainage analysis.  He requested that the Board provide direction.

 

Mr. Culbert said the Board could discuss the proposed, but would take no action until the plan was reviewed by peer review.  Mr. Brouillet said if the Board desired, the applicant could submit a request for extension.  He suggested the possibility of a joint meeting between the Board and the Conservation Commission to obtain consistent recommendations. 

 

Mr. Yarmo arrived.

 

Mr. Brouillet noted that the commission didn’t support the minimum expiated dredge and fill permit and would therefore be required to file the long form.  It was Mr. Brouillet’s opinion that the wetland permit would not be difficult to obtain from the state.  Mr. Yarmo understood that there was a 500SF fill, but the Conservation Commission was concerned with the removal of the WCD around the wetlands.  He said half the proposed road was contained in the WCD.  He said the commission could review the EIA at their December 10, 2003 meeting and provide comment.  Mr. Brouillet said that the roadway impact to the WCD was not half, but approximately 40%.

 

Mr. Culbert suggested that the letter of extension be submitted, have Conservation Commission review the EIA and have peer review of the plan by the January 5, 2003 meeting. 

 

Mr. Brouillet pointed out that there were provisions in the subdivision regulations (under special permit) for a use of a roadway to be within the WCD. 

 

The plan was date specified to the January 5, 2003 meeting. 

 

There was a brief discussion regarding a (second opinion) letter received by the Board from Town Counsel and if there could legally be a generalized discussion with the applicant.  Attorney Michael Donovan, representing interested parties asked that the information would also be shared publicly.  After further consideration to release the letter received by Town Counsel, Mr. DeLuca, Mr. McNamara, Mr. D’Andrea and Mr. Yarmo were in favor of releasing Town Counsel’s second opinion letter to the public.  Ms. Bousa was not in favor of releasing the letter. 

 

Mr. Yarmo said the plan would be included on the December 10, 2003 Conservation Commission agenda. 

 

Ms. Ouellette and Mr. Lynde returned to the Board.

 

Map 6 Lot 206 - David Mendes - Irene Drive - Proposed 5-Lot Subdivision for Continued Consideration

 

Mr. Dave Brouillet of Herbert Associates, representing the applicant, presented the plan to the Board.  He said the plan was for a five-lot subdivision.  He said the original plan proposed the road to continue from the end of Irene Drive through a wetland crossing and connect to Thomas Avenue.  However, the Conservation Commission had other suggestions.  Mr. Brouillet asked that the Board make a determination and provide direction so the plan could continue the review process. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked what the length of the cul-de-sac would be.  The exact measurement was unknown, but Mr. Brouillet believed that the length was longer than the regulations.  He asked for clarification from the Board since conflicting information was received by the Conservation Commission, to which plan was preferred, either a five-lot subdivision with no wetland impact, or a connected road with a wetland impact.  Mr. Culbert noted that the Conservation Commission is an advisory board and the Planning Board is a regulatory board. 

 

Mr. D’Andrea asked how the road length calculations were being determined.  Mr. Brouillet said the length of the road was determined to be approximately 2000ft. to the end of the existing cul-de-sac. 

 

Mr. Yarmo reviewed the recommendations of the Conservation Commission, which were based on site specific, protecting the environment and consider not making the connection. 

 

Mr. Jim Gove, Gove Environmental Services who composed the EIA (which was reviewed by the Louis-Berger Group) believed that there would be a detriment to the wetlands if the connection were made.  He discussed which areas were recommended for placement in permanent protection.  He said there was an area of fill that should be removed because it acted as almost a constriction of the water flow through the western area of the parcel. 

 

Mr. Greg Wood, Louis-Berger Group (peer review) provided a brief overview of the site and concurred that the area was environmentally sensitive.  He noted that Beaver Brook was very significant.  He said the wetland impact was important due to the wildlife corridor since it was the only forested area.  It could be presumed that the corridor area would become even more important over time.  Mr. Wood said one concern was the size and design of the crossing.  He went on to discuss the current situation with beaver habitation.  He said there may be a way to cross the wetland that would have less of an impact, such as lower downstream where there was a natural valley, but there would be no way to tie back directly to the right-of-way.  Mr. Wood (agreeing with the findings of TFMoran) said due to the encroachment into the wetland and WCD, it would be prudent to have some sort of water quality set up to treat the runoff from the road before it impacted the wetlands. 

 

Mr. Lynde didn’t feel the proposed plan met the criteria for plans the Board wanted to approve due to: 1) exceeded cul-de-sac length limit; 2) option for through road not viable because of wetlands impact and surrounding roads not able to handle increased traffic. 

 

Ms. Ouellette asked if the applicant was willing to revise the cul-de-sac so it would meet the length regulations.  Mr. Brouillet said a cul-de-sac could be drawn from Thomas Avenue.  Ms. Ouellette wanted to know if the applicant was willing to consider meeting the regulations of 2400ft length maximum from Irene Drive.  Mr. Brouillet was unsure if it could be provided, but would review.  He felt that a length of 2600ft was reasonable for the Board to approve.  Ms. Ouellette felt it would be difficult for the Board to waive the regulation since it was based upon safety.  Mr. Brouillet said if the Board would not allow the cul-de-sac, then the plan would be presented for a road to connect through from Irene Drive to Thomas Avenue. 

 

Mr. Culbert wanted to know what crossing alternatives were available.  Mr. Wood said if the impact couldn’t be avoided there may be ways to make the crossing less impacting on the environment.  He discussed the items that would be reviewed to reduce the impact. He noted that there would always be a problem with the beavers and said there was a potential for it to get worse.  Mr. Culbert wanted to know if box culverts would make the water on Thomas Avenue better.  Mr. Wood believed some of the current problems were due to the beaver dams.  He said the profile of the road was approximately five feet higher than the existing ground and speculated that the beavers would use the roadway embankment to facilitate a higher dam.  He said if avoiding the impact was possible, it should strongly be considered due to the environmental concerns. 

 

PUBLIC INPUT

 

The owner of 12 Thomas Avenue recently moved into his residence and noted that the water table appeared to be high and came within twenty-five feet of his home.  He wanted to know what he was to do if he was impacted.  Mr. Culbert said the beavers may cause problems even if there were no impacts from development. 

 

Cal, a resident on Thomas Avenue said there was a small marsh area behind his home and said his basement was approximately half a foot from the water and wanted the Board to recognize that abutters would be impacted if the plan were approve. 

 

Mr. Rich Liardo, Nancy Avenue said he had a brook behind his home, and wanted to know if he would be guaranteed that there would be no additional water flow onto their property.  Mr. Culbert said no one could guarantee what the beavers would do. 

 

Ms. Corrine Howard, Albert Street was concerned with safety and the increase in traffic on the narrow roadway. 

 

Ms. Dianne Andrews, Albert Street believed that people would access Thomas Avenue because of the difficult traffic at the intersection of Marsh Road.  She asked if DES had walked the site.  Mr. Culbert said the Planning Board wouldn’t have been notified.  Mr. Yarmo said requests were normally made when dredge and fill applications were submitted. 

 

Ms. Susan Tierney, Thomas Avenue, said there had been a change in the water table due to the development in the Irene Drive/Scotland Avenue area and wanted to know if there would be additional changes in water flow due to more development.  She didn’t feel that beavers were the cause of the change in water flow. 

 

Ms. Alicia Hennessey, 71 Dutton Road felt the length of the road from Robin Road to the end of the cul-de-sac at Irene Drive should be addressed.  She said the environmental impacts should also be addressed.  She believed the Board had an obligation to protect the abutters who currently have issues with water.  She didn’t feel that impacting the wetland was the answer. 

 

The discussion was brought back to the Board and the following concerns were discussed: 1) sensitivity of the area; 2) no value to crossing the wetland; 3) length of cul-de-sac exceeding regulations; 4) abutters comments/feedback regarding connection; 5) obligation of developer to meet regulations. 

 

It was Mr. Brouillet’s understanding that the Board would not support a connection to Thomas Avenue, or a cul-de-sac coming from Irene Drive.  He said the other option would be to have a cul-de-sac from Thomas Avenue, which would comply with the cul-de-sac regulations and allow development of the land.  Mr. Culbert added that waivers would be needed for the land.  Ms. Bousa reiterated that the length of cul-de-sac was needed.  After a consensus of the Board, Mr. Culbert directed Mr. Brouillet that the Board would not support a through road because of the wetlands disturbance, or a cul-de-sac longer than 2400ft. 

 

Mr. Brouillet requested an extension so the plan could be revised.  A letter would be submitted. 

 

Mr. Scanzani arrived. 

 

Map 6 Lot 179 - 128 Realty Corporation - Mammoth Road - Proposed 9-Lot Subdivision and Seeking Special Permit for Wetland Crossing for continued consideration

 

Mr. Dave Brouillet of Herbert Associates representing the applicant presented the plan to the Board.  He said the proposed was an update from the last plan presented.  He said at the advice of their wetland scientist, due to soil types and the attempt to avoid a sensitive area, the road had been moved slightly to the north.  He said the plan had not yet been reviewed by the Conservation Commission and requested that the plan be continued to the January 5, 2003 meeting.  The Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) was received on November 19, 2003.  

 

Mr. Greg Wood, Louis-Berger Group (peer review) said they had received the EIA on Saturday.  He said it appeared that the presented plan didn’t match the plan contained in the EIA.  Mr. Brouillet said they hadn’t submitted updated plans with the presented scenario.  He said they would forward the updated plans to Louis-Berger. 

 

Mr. Scanzani asked how much wetland would need to be crossed.  Mr. Brouillet said they were proposing an oversized box culvert (20ft. w x 5ft. h) and a down swale system with a crossing of approximately 350 linear feet.  He said it would be wide enough to encompass the whole stream.  He said they were not intending to back up any flow, even in the 100-year flood plane.  He said there would be a mitigation area in the lower portion of the parcel. 

 

Mr. Yarmo recalled some discussion regarding the crossing being further down the parcel at the minimum impact area.  Mr. Brouillet said the alignment had changed.  Initially there were two crossings proposed, but per the recommendation of the board and the wetland scientist the crossing had been moved.  There was a brief discussion regarding a prior meeting in which the Stateline Market’s (Ray’s) access onto the new road was reviewed. 

 

Mr. Jim Gove, Gove Environmental Services discussed the soil mapping and showed the areas that had deep organic deposits which would be detrimental for a road to go through.  He showed the other areas of the parcel that would have great impact and explained that where the proposed road was located in an area that would have the least impact. 

 

Mr. Culbert confirmed that the plan would be shown to the Conservation Commission. 

 

Mr. Lynde asked if there were any restrictions to crossing a 100-year flood plane.  Mr. Culbert was not aware of any restrictions. 

 

Mr. Brouillet asked the Board their feeling on the entrance.  Mr. Culbert said he would not support a southern entrance.  Mr. Brouillet noted that the store (Ray’s Stateline Market) was on a separate parcel. 

 

Ms. Bousa asked if the EIA would be forwarded for environmental peer review.  Mr. Culbert answered yes.

 

The plan was date specified to the January 5, 2003 meeting.     

 

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 of Herbert Associates representing the applicant presented the plan to the Board.  He said the plan was an extension of an existing right-of-way off of Benoit Avenue.  He said from Benoit, the cul-de-sac extended an additional 300ft. to a four lot subdivision (two of which are oversized).  He said the applicant met with the Fire Chief for input regarding consideration of a shared driveway, or single driveways for access to the oversized lots.  Mr. Brouillet said the Fire Chief would like to see a single, shared driveway.  He said the profile grade for the driveway was approximately 10.7%.  He said they met with Dufresne-Henry and received a series of comments, most of which were addressed.  He said a second set of comments were then received, which he felt could be addressed.  Mr. Brouillet said they would also be happy to incorporate the comments from the Conservation Commission.  He said his client had agreed to place a cistern for fire suppression of two homes. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked for the total length of the cul-de-sac.  Mr. Brouillet said the total length from Benoit Avenue was 600ft.  The Board informed that the cul-de-sac should be calculated from the point of egress.  Mr. Brouillet noted in the past that the Planning Board had approved the extension of Benoit Avenue and the extension to access the parcel which was essentially land-locked.  He said his client was requesting the final connection to develop the land.  Mr. Culbert asked for the length of the right-of-way.  Mr. Brouillet said the right-of-way was approximately 300ft.  Mr. Culbert understood that the extension was granted to the developer of the Benoit Avenue extension and did not make the proposed parcel grandfathered.  He then asked what the length of the road would be if it were calculated from Mammoth Road.  Mr. Brouillet said the road from Mammoth Road to the end of the proposed cul-de-sac was 2200ft.  He then discussed the roadway, and mentioned that at the previous meeting, the Board requested that a reverse curve be eliminated and replaced with a 100ft tangent; the overall layout was essentially in the same footprint. 

 

Mr. Yarmo said that the Conservation Commission had recommended that the treatment swale be moved out of the WCD and wanted to know if there was an issue.  Mr. Brouillet said some buffer could be provided, but it could not be removed entirely. 

 

Mr. McNamara asked for the length of the shared driveway compared to separate driveways.  Mr. Brouillet said the shared driveway was approximately 1600ft with a 10% slope, separate driveways would be approximately the same length, but would have a profile slope of 12%-14%.

 

The Board discussed the issue of shared driveways and it was noted that the Board had not approved a shared driveway in a very long time.  Mr. Brouillet noted that the regulations had provisions for shared driveways with the presentation of certain documents.

 

Attorney Paul DeCarolis, representing the applicant said that the ordinance permitted shared driveways at the discretion of the Board.  One requirement is that the land owner submit a declaration /release of liability to the Town including maintenance of the roadway, to be recorded at the Registry of Deeds; also the property owners would need to record (at the Registry of Deeds) a declaration (covenant) which states how the maintenance of the roadway would be administrated.  He offered to draft and submit a copy of the documents.  Mr. Culbert noted that the regulations stated that ‘common driveways shall not be utilized’; he went on to say that a waiver would needed for a shared driveway.

 

There was a question about the frontage and if the lots would have adequate footage.  It was later noted that the lots met the frontage; a bound appeared to be missing on the plan. 

 

PUBLIC INPUT 

 

Ms. Joanne Hilbert, owner of the property to the east of the proposed wanted to know what would happen if the roads were not maintained.  She was concerned with runoff.  Mr. Culbert provided a brief history of the proposed plan and noted that any problems with the maintenance would be a civil matter.   

 

Mr. Scanzani discussed the driveway and said that the steepness and length was longer than what would be allowed for a road.  He questioned how the driveway would be constructed unless there was drainage in place due to the road cuts that would need to be made.  He said he wouldn’t approve a road with the proposed conditions, and would not approve the driveway(s).  Mr. McNamara was not in favor of the length and grade of the driveway. 

 

Ms. Bousa asked for the proposed width of the driveway.  Mr. Brouillet said the width of the driveway was proposed at 10ft with 2ft shoulders on each side and drainage ditches.  He said that the width would be increased and passing zones could be added.  He said that the design for the driveway was keeping with the regulations for a roadway.  Emergency vehicle access was discussed. 

 

Mr. Scanzani reiterated that he would not vote in favor of a driveway that was 1600ft long with 10% grading.  Mr. DeLuca said he would not vote in favor of a shared driveway.  Mr. McNamara and Ms. Ouellette also would not vote in favor of the proposed driveway.  Mr. Lynde suggested that the driveway be reviewed similar to that of a road, therefore taking drainage into consideration and having a plan presented.  Mr. Brouillet said that the plan could be revised to show two driveways.  He believed his client had been proactive by meeting with the Fire Chief to ensure that access concerns were addressed.  He said both the Fire Chief and the Conservation Commission preferred a shared driveway, but he would revise the plan for two driveways, at the recommendation of the Planning Board.  He said that they could also incorporate areas for vehicles to pass. 

 

Ms. Bousa said she had no problem with the front two lots, but because of safety issues would not be in favor of the back two lots regardless of the driveway configuration(s).  Mr. Scanzani, Mr. McNamara and Ms. Ouellette agreed.  Mr. Brouillet asked if the Board was prepared to vote.  Attorney DeCarolis asked that the Board take their vote based upon two driveways.  Mr. Culbert answered no.  Attorney DeCarolis requested that the applicant be allowed to revise the plan to show two driveways for presentation to the Board.  Mr. Culbert noted that four Board members were not in favor of the back two lots due to the safety issue, steepness and length.  Mr. Brouillet said he wanted to know what the regulations state so the plan could be revised accordingly.  Mr. D’Andrea said that there were no specific length, or grade requirements, but per section 11.02 and 11.05 of the regulations general principles of safety are outlined and should be addressed.  He said the Board should also have the opportunity to review the grading plan and impacts associated with the construction of the driveway(s).  Mr. Scanzani further discussed the length, slope, drainage and emergency vehicle access.  He was not in favor of the proposed.  Mr. Culbert reiterated that the Board viewed the slope as a safety issue. 

 

Mr. Brouillet asked that the plan be continued to the next meeting so they could have the opportunity to revise the plans and work with Dufresne-Henry to address their concerns/comments. 

 

Mr. DeLuca discussed his concerns with plowing the driveway and wanted to know if there were areas to remove snow and still have a safe passage area.  He said it would be difficult for a plow to work its way up the hill, due to the grading, if there was a good amount of snow to remove and no place to put it.  Mr. Brouillet discussed the width of the road and believed that there would be adequate room for the removal of snow. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked if there were alternate locations for the houses on the back lots.  Mr. Brouillet said the proposed location was the most suitable based on the topography of the parcel. 

 

The plan was date specified to the January 5, 2003 meeting. 

 

NEW BUSINESS

 

Map 12 Lot 245 - Denis Duquette & Christopher Carroll - Old Gage Hill Road North - Proposed 2-Lot Subdivision for submission

 

Mr. Scanzani read the list of abutters aloud. There were no persons present who did not have their name read, or who had a problem with notification. The file did not contain any written correspondence from abutters.

 

Mr. Dave Brouillet of Herbert Associates, representing the applicant presented the plan to the Board.  He discussed the configuration of the lot and said the applicant was seeking a two-lot subdivision.  He said that a variance had been granted (Case #2234 - October 2002) by the Board of Adjustment for insufficient frontage.  Mr. McNamara said there was a condition to the variance approval that there would be no further subdivision.  He went on to review the October 2002 minutes of the Board of Adjustment in which it was noted that the variance for frontage was not granting two non-conforming lots.  Mr. Denis Duquette of Old Gage Hill Road (applicant), explained that the lot was already non-conforming and based upon the Simplex case granting a variance would not create two non-conforming lots from a conforming lot.  Mr. D’Andrea read a portion of section 11.04 in the subdivision regulations which addressed back lot standards.  Mr. McNamara questioned if the plan should be reviewed by the Conservation Commission based upon a conversation by the Board of Adjustment regarding wetlands on the property.  It was the feeling of the Board that the plan would not need Conservation review.

 

PUBLIC INPUT

 

Ms. Lisa Audy, Kennedy Drive, wanted to know where the proposed house would be located in connection with her lot.  Mr. Brouillet said that the leach field would be closest to her home.  Ms. Audy noted that there was a snowmobile trail through the back portion of the lot.  She wanted to know what plans there were for the existing shed on the property.  Mr. Duquette said the shed was on the property when he purchased the parcel.  Mr. Audy was concerned with the leach field being in close proximity to his home.  Mr. Brouillet said that the applicant has said that the existing shed would eventually be razed.  He also noted that everything designed (septic, leach etc) would be reviewed locally and by the state. 

 

Ms. Bousa was unclear where the driveway would be located on Old Gage Hill Road and asked if there would be adequate site distance.  Mr. Brouillet said the site distance would be reviewed.  Ms. Bousa said vegetation/growth should be reviewed.  Mr. Brouillet suggested adding a condition to approval for the site distance. 

 

Mr. Culbert confirmed with the applicant that the shed would be razed.  Mr. Duquette answered yes.  Mr. Culbert said it would be added to the approval process.

 

MOTION:

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

 

VOTE:

 

(7 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.

 

MOTION:

(Scanzani/McNamara) To approve the plan subject to: 1) existing shed to be removed; 2) verify site distance for driveway is adequate; 3) note to be added to plan which stipulate no further subdivision of the lot per the Board of Adjustment variance approval of Case #2234; 4) add state subdivision approval number to the plan; 5) WCD no-cut zone signs to be posted along the WCD border. 

 

VOTE:

 

(7 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.

 

Mr. Lynde confirmed that the plans would not be signed until the conditions for approval were met.  Mr. Culbert answered yes. 

 

Map 5 Lot 89 - Best Built Realty Trust - off Castle Hill Road - Proposed 6-Lot Subdivision for submission

 

Mr. Scanzani read the list of abutters aloud. There were no persons present who did not have their name read, or who had a problem with notification. The file did not contain any written correspondence from abutters.

 

Mr. Matt Hamor of Meisner Brem Corporation representing the applicant presented the plan to the Board.  He said the owners currently resided in a home on ML 5-89.  He explained that the applicant would like to utilize the Town right-of-way to access the property for the development/subdivision of the current lot into six individual lots.  He said the cul-de-sac would be approximately 860 linear feet.  Mr. Hamor said two waivers would be requested: 1) minimum 100ft. distance from the right-of-way line - requesting 3% for 75ft and then grading will transition; 2) maximum grade of 10% - plan proposes grade of 12% along the entrance and continuing up into the subdivision.  With the increased grading, five to six feet of the retaining wall could be eliminated.  The proposed maximum height of the retaining wall was 10ft - 12ft on each side.  Mr. Hamor said that the drainage would be controlled through a catch basin/drain man hole system to be directed into a detention facility. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked what distance the 3% road grade would run.  Mr. Hamor said the 3% would continue for approximately 75ft. and then transition into the vertical curve for the 12% roadway.  He said a structural engineering firm had been retained to design the retaining walls, and pictures of which could be found on the last two sheets of the plan. 

 

Mr. Scanzani discussed the road height and elevation and asked for the height of the retaining walls.  Mr. Hamor said the retaining walls would be approximately 10ft - 12ft. in height.  Mr. Scanzani asked if there would be guardrails on top of the retaining walls.  Mr. Hamor said they were thinking about proposing a fence. 

 

Mr. Lynde asked if there were regulations that allowed retaining walls in lieu of side slopes.  Mr. Scanzani answered no.  Mr. Hamor was not aware that a waiver was needed for side slopes, but would submit a request if needed.  Mr. Culbert wanted to know what length the retaining wall would be.  Mr. Hamor said the retaining walls would continue along the right-of-way and the slopes from then on would be 3-1.  Mr. Lynde wanted to know how far the retaining wall would be constructed from the right-of-way edge.  Mr. Hamor said the wall would approximately 6ft from the right-of-way edge. 

 

Mr. D’Andrea said he had reviewed the application and found that it was ready to be accepted for consideration by the Board.

 

PUBLIC INPUT

 

Ms. Sandra Crawford, Castle Hill Road provided a brief history of the right-of-way.  She said in 1998 an agreement was made for use of the Town right-of-way, with clearing not to exceed 30ft., with the intent to leave a 10ft. buffer between the proposed driveway and abutting parcels.  She said the agreement was violated with clearing/excavation well beyond the 30ft., as well as encroachment onto her property.  She said an unauthorized/uncertified retaining wall was constructed on her property and valuable trees and fill were also removed from her property without permission.  She was against adding any additional retaining walls, detention ponds, or property for construction of the proposed.  Ms. Crawford said to date no effort had been made to acknowledge/address the damage done to her property.  She said they had been told by the applicant to move their driveway/access point due to the grading of the right-of-way, which they had used for twenty-five years.  She believed because they had used the driveway openly without objection, they may own the access.  In her opinion allowing the proposed would be contrary to the Town’s rules and regulations governing subdivisions.  Ms. Crawford explained that her property was sheared off along the 200ft. length of it and a retaining wall was constructed without permission, this left a dangerous 6ft - 8ft. drop to the road below.  She didn’t feel that the road could be brought up to Town standards without further impact to her property. 

 

Mr. Lynde explained that during the sale of the property between Fred Houle and Alfio Torrisi, Mr. Houle wanted permission to access the lot.  Initially a 10ft. width was granted, but it was then changed to 30ft. with a 10ft. buffer on each side so the neighbors wouldn’t be disturbed.  He said when the right-of-way was approved, the agreement with Mr. Houle allowed for a 30ft width, with a 10ft. buffer, which in the Selectmen’s view has been violated.  Mr. Lynde said Mr. Torrisi (the current owner) was directed to meet with the Planning Board regarding the use of the right-of-way.  It was reiterated that the agreement with the Town was for a 30ft. right-of-way with a 10ft. buffer over Town owned property.  Permission was not granted to build a retaining wall. 

 

Mr. Hamor said that a conceptual plan had been presented to the Board and one of the issues was the work being done within the right-of-way.  He said they went through the exercise of meeting with Town Administrator Tom Gaydos and asked that Attorney Troissi speak to the issues.  Mr. Lynde said the position of the Selectmen was that the agreement with Mr. Houle for 30ft. had been violated and should be corrected.  It was agreed that Mr. Torrisi had the right to come before the Planning Board to request an approval of a subdivision using the full 50ft. width.  He said depending on the action of the Board, there would still be an issue with the use of 30ft.

 

Mr. Al Dubois, Castle Hill Road, said Mr. Torrisi was allowed to use the 30ft. road, which was approximately 49ft. currently.  He said the degree of the road is currently 19% and wanted to know how it would be possible to bring it to 12%.  Mr. Hamor said retaining walls would be constructed.  He said he had a boring report which showed that that near the entrance there was some ledge between 6ft - 10ft.  Mr. Dubois said he spoke with the Fire Chief who clearly stated to him that the Planning Board would not allow blasting for the road.  He wanted to know if the first agreement would be null and void if the Planning Board allowed a subdivision.  It was his understanding that Mr. Torrisi was to put the road back to 30ft. and remove the retaining walls before a subdivision was applied for.  Mr. Culbert said that nothing would happen until such time that the plan was accepted for consideration.  Mr. Dubois asked if a water test would be done in connection with the construction because he had an increase in runoff to his property due to the timber that was cut and to clear the road. 

 

Ms. Cheryle Dubois, Castle Hill Road, noted that her well was located directly across the street from the driveway and was tired of the water and silt runoff onto her property.  She said since the road was constructed, her basement was wet. 

 

Ms. Gayle Plouffe, Castle Hill Road, wanted to know what type of retaining wall would be constructed and the height.  It was said that the retaining wall would be cement block approximately 10ft. - 12ft. in height with a safety fence on top.  Ms. Plouffe felt the retaining wall didn’t meet the spirit and ordinances of the Town.  Ms. Plouffe wanted to know how fire apparatus would access the proposed subdivision and if the road would provide areas for passing.  She then discussed the current drainage system and believed it should be addressed since the flow eventually ended up at Mammoth Road. 

 

Mr. Culbert said he wanted to know when the property was cleared, if an Intent to Cut was filed with the Town and if proper siltation fencing installed. 

 

Attorney James Troissi of Salem, NH, representing the applicant, began discussing the ownership history of the parcel and how the right-of-way was created in the early 1970’s.  When Mr. Torrisi wanted to purchase the property, he also wanted to construct a home and therefore requested a frontage variance for access to the parcel with the understanding that he would later seek to subdivide the property.  Legal opinion had been exchanged between the Town and Mr. Torrisi and on July 15, 2003 a letter was drafted by the Selectmen which stated that Mr. Torrisi had the right to construct a road (to meet all Town requirements/specifications) in conjunction with the proposed subdivision; the Planning Board may require mitigation of any off-site impact the future road may have on other properties. 

 

Ms. Bousa wanted to know at the time the right-of-way was dedicated (in the 1970’s), if the Town dedicated the 50ft. right-of-way with 25ft. intersection radii at Castle Hill Road.  Mr. Hamor understood it to be true based on a plan on file which showed the radiuses of the intersection.  Ms. Bousa found it hard to believe that the Town took the radii over an existing private driveway.  Mr. Hamor didn’t believe the driveway was there at the time.  Ms. Crawford said she had resided at the property since 1978.  Attorney Troissi said that the subdivision (along Castle Hill Road) was approved in 1972 and formally approved and signed by the Planning Board on June 18, 1973.  Mr. Culbert said the subdivision had no bearing, because there was no substantial investment done for four years.  Attorney Troissi said that the Town deed to the right-of-way was drafted and established in 1973.  Mr. Scanzani said the radii for the road would not have been part of the 50ft. right-of-way.  There was further discussion regarding the right-of-way and what date it was deeded to the Town.  Mr. Lynde said two issues needed to be resolved: 1) does the Town own the portion of the right-of-way that curves/cuts into Ms. Crawford’s driveway; 2) does Ms. Crawford own that portion of the property through adverse possession.  Mr. Hamor informed that rounding was included on the recorded deeds and that TFMoran drafted a plan for the Selectmen which also showed the rounding.  Mr. Culbert said the Board would need to find out the date of the original deed and when the radii happened.  Mr. Hamor had a deed from 1974 that showed the curvature on the right-of-way.  Attorney Troissi said when the subdivision along Castle Hill Road happened (4-lots) the deed was drafted and recorded and included the curvatures. 

 

Ms. Bousa asked if any of the surrounding parcels would be landlocked due to the proposed subdivision.  Mr. Hamor said the abutting parcels had frontage onto a roadway above the proposed subdivision.  Mr. Hamor took note of the request to further review.

 

Mr. Culbert believed one of the serious issues was the 12ft. retaining wall because the Town regulations would not be met for 3-1 slopes.  He said through testimony given there appeared to be clearing without a permit, which lead to siltation problems.  He said if that was the case the situation should be corrected immediately.  Mr. McNamara was concerned with the design of the road and noted that the Board had denied a plan on Mammoth Road because of a similar design.  Mr. Scanzani said he would not vote to replace cement retaining walls for 3-1 slopes.  Mr. Lynde questioned how the Town would maintain the fences/guardrails. 

 

It was noted that regardless of the Board’s decision, the Selectmen could enforce the original agreement with the owner.  A current problem with abutting property, due to prior construction, is considered a civil matter.

 

Mr. McNamara wanted to know if there was an impact to the regulations or Planning Board’s decision based upon the uncertainty of the entrance.  Mr. D’Andrea believed that the issue could be addressed through the review process.  He said the entrance issue should be resolved.  

 

The Board discussed what actions they could take.  The following motions were made. 

 

MOTION:

(Scanzani/DeLuca) To accept the plan for consideration. 

 

VOTE:

 

(7 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.

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MOTION:

(McNamara/DeLuca) To accept, for consideration, the waiver request for road construction of more than 10% road grade.

 

VOTE:

 

(7 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.

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MOTION:

(Scanzani/DeLuca) To accept, for consideration, the waiver request for the roadway design at 3% grade for 100ft. at intersection 4.6.

 

VOTE:

 

(7 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.

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MOTION:

(Scanzani/DeLuca) To accept, for consideration, the waiver request of the 3-1 side slope to 0% for 250 linear feet. 

 

VOTE:

 

(6 - 1 - 0) The motion carries.  Ms. Bousa voted no. 

 

Once the waivers were accepted for consideration, the Board took the following motions:

 

MOTION:

(Scanzani/McNamara) To deny the waiver request for the road grade to be at 12% .

 

VOTE:

 

(7 - 0 - 0) Through an affirmative vote, the motion carried to deny the waiver request. 

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MOTION:

(Scanzani/DeLuca) To deny the waiver request for the 3% minimum grade at the intersection. 

 

VOTE:

 

(7 - 0 - 0)Through an affirmative vote, the motion carried to deny the waiver request

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MOTION:

(Scanzani/Ouellette) To deny the waiver request of the slope to be at 0%. 

 

VOTE:

 

(7 - 0 - 0)Through an affirmative vote, the motion carried to deny the waiver request

 

Mr. Culbert said the plans would be forwarded to the engineer for review. 

 

MINUTES

 

November 3, 2003

 

MOTION:

(McNamara/Lynde) To approve the November 3, 2003 meeting minutes as amended.

 

VOTE:

 

(5 - 0 - 2) The motion carried.  Mr. Scanzani and Ms. Bousa abstained.

 

November 17, 2003 - deferred to the next meeting.

 

DATE SPECIFIED PLANS

 

January 5, 2003

Map 4 Lot 180-14 - Two M Construction - Benoit Avenue Extension - Request for Bond Reduction

Map 11 Lot 93 - Cormier & Saurman Building, LLC - Dutton Road - Proposed Elderly Housing for Site              Plan Review and Seeking Special Permit for Wetland Crossing

Map 6 Lot 179 - 128 Realty Corporation - Mammoth Road - Proposed 9-Lot Subdivision and Seeking               Special Permit for Wetland Crossing

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

 

DISCUSSION

 

Mr. Lynde informed that the two warrant articles that the Board requested (1-GIS; 2-Assistant Planner) were brought to the Selectmen, but received no support and would therefore not be included on the Town ballot. 

 

Mr. Lynde said comments for submitted plans should not come from the Fire Chief, but should be forwarded in writing from the Technical Review Committee through Mr. D’Andrea. 

 

There was a brief conversation regarding the Conservation Commission making recommendations to applicants.  It was noted that applicants make changes at their own risk.                   

 

ADJOURNMENT

 

MOTION:

(DeLuca/McNamara) To adjourn the meeting.

 

VOTE:

 

(7 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.

 

The meeting was adjourned at approximately 11:25 pm.

                                                                                                Respectfully submitted,

 

                                                                                                Charity A. L. Willis

                                                                                                Recording Secretary