APPROVED

 

TOWN OF PELHAM

PLANNING BOARD MEETING

March 1, 2004

 

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

 

The Secretary, Bill Scanzani, called the roll:

 

PRESENT:

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

 

ABSENT:

 

Henry DeLuca, Alternate Raymond Brunelle

 

Mr. Culbert informed that Mr. Yarmo would vote in Mr. DeLuca’s absence.

 

NEW BUSINESS

 

Map 29 Lot 7-41 – David Bibeau – 36 Atwood Road – Site Plan Application to construct a 30’x40’ garage within the Wetland Conservation District adjacent to a Prime Wetland

 

Mr. David Bibeau, 36 Atwood Road reviewed the plan with the Board.  He said the lot contained an existing driveway, and per the conditions of a Zoning Board of Adjustment variance, certain structures had been removed.  He said he would like to construct a garage behind the existing home.  Mr. Bibeau reiterated that he had received a variance from the Zoning Board of Adjustment, and that the plan had been reviewed by the Conservation Commission. 

 

Mr. McNamara provided the Board with a summary of the variance that had been granted.  He noted that the business was grandfathered and based upon testimony, constructing the proposed building would protect the Prime Wetlands and the WCD more than the existing condition (storing truck outside).  He said the variance was granted with the condition that the applicant receive all approvals from NHDES.  It was understood that a hearing was held, and a letter had been received from Dr. Frank Richardson (NHDES) saying that the use was allowed, and would have the least adverse impact on the surrounding lands. 

 

Mr. Yarmo provided the Board with a copy of letters that Mr. Mark West (West Environmental) had sent to Dr. Richardson.  He pointed out that the voters had voted to support extra protection for prime wetlands and the Conservation Commission was in the process of studying more prime wetlands.  He said that he had sent a letter to the Zoning Board of Adjustment which made the argument that the prime wetlands need special protection because the voters wanted it.  Through Mr. Yarmo’s discussions with Dr. Richardson and Mr. West, the permit was granted because the site had already degraded.  He believed there were a lot of conditions that should be reviewed and suggested that the Board walk the site.  Mr. Scanzani asked if the West Environmental letters were forwarded to NHDES.  Mr. Yarmo answered yes.  Mr. McNamara noted that a representative, retained by the Town, also attended and testified at the NHDES hearing.  Mr. Yarmo said he didn’t dispute the NHDES letter.  Mr. Scanzani read aloud the letter forwarded by NHDES. 

 

There was further discussion regarding the approved permit.  Mr. Yarmo read aloud a portion of Mr. West’s letter and what issues were reviewed on the site.  Mr. Scanzani noted of the fifteen acres owned by the applicant, fourteen of which are wet.  He said that the existing home and septic may limit the configuration. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked why the proposed garage was being located so close to the wetland.  Mr. Bibeau said there was not much room between the house, the leach bed and the tank.  Mr. Culbert said that a site plan that addressed Dr. Richardson’s comments/requirements should be presented the Board. 

 

Ms. Ouellette asked if the truck would be worked on in the garage.  Mr. Bibeau said there were other issues, such as the hydraulics not working in the cold weather.  Ms. Ouellette asked if the garage would contain running water, or a drainage system.  Mr. Bibeau answered no.  He said the only thing he did with his trucks was cut and welding, they are serviced at a garage in Salem, NH. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked if the trucks in the garage would be empty.  Mr. Bibeau answered no.  Mr. Culbert asked if the garage would have a drainage system for drops/leakage.  Mr. Bibeau said the garage would have a frost wall that was raised, so in the event something spilled, it would be contained. 

 

Mr. Jeff Orchard, an environmental consultant from Windham, NH (who worked with Mr. Bibeau) informed that floor drains were illegal.  He said that there would be a two-foot earthen burm would divert any water going directly into the wetland. 

 

Mr. Lynde arrived.

 

Mr. Culbert asked if a different location for the garage had been considered.  Mr. Bibeau said he was working with a small area.  Mr. Yarmo believed that an engineered site plan was needed as well as an understanding of the operation. 

 

There was no public input. 

 

Mr. Orchard said he attended the NHDES hearing at which time he discussed, with Mr. West, the issues raised in his letter to the DES.  He said the conditions on the permit reflect the agreement between him and Mr. West.  He said they had satisfied the DES, as well as Dr. Richardson.  He said placing a cement floor within a garage was better than doing work on gravel, twelve feet from the wetlands.  Mr. Culbert confirmed that any leaks/spills would be contained within the garage because of the four-inch lip around the garage.  Mr. Orchard answered yes and reiterated that the garage was far better than the current situation.  There was a brief discussion regarding the containers used by the applicant.  It was noted that the containers were used solely for construction materials.  There was a concern that that the construction materials may contain hazardous materials (i.e. lead paint, mercury) and remaining residue that could possibly end up in the wetland through rainwater, or the container being tipped. 

 

Mr. Culbert said a site walk would need to be scheduled; an engineered site plan would need to be done (showing items such as 4” capture area, disposal process, how concerns of Dr. Richardson would be addressed). 

 

Mr. McNamara reiterated that the business had been grandfathered and the current question was enforcement.  Mr. Yarmo said the wetland was voted as a prime wetland before the applicant purchased the property.  Mr. McNamara said the business was in place and working at the time the variance was requested.  He said nothing was submitted to the Zoning Board of Adjustment to raise any kind of a challenge regarding the business (which was a code enforcement issue). 

 

Mr. Culbert said that a business practices should be described (i.e. disposal of materials that could leach into a prime wetlands, process of capturing disposal records).  Ms. Bousa wanted to know if the Board could ask the applicant how the garage would be constructed without disturbing the wetlands.  Mr. Culbert answered yes.  He asked the applicant if the garage could be pushed back further from the wetlands.  Mr. Orchard said that the turning radius of the trucks and the location of the septic made the design difficult.  Mr. Scanzani asked if the garage could be relocated to the front of the existing house.  Mr. Orchard said the front of the parcel was grassy and wooded.  He said it would place a disposal operation next to the street. 

 

Mr. Culbert said a site walk would be scheduled.  He said the next time the application was reviewed, the Board would expect to see a full engineering plan, and a description of business practices. 

 

Mr. Scanzani pointed out that the abutter list had not been read aloud. 

 

Mr. Orchard wanted to know if the Board wanted him to address the proximity to wetlands in the site plan review.  Mr. Culbert said all the issues discussed this evening should be addressed, which include the proximity to wetlands. 

 

Mr. Scanzani reviewed the Planning Board file and informed that it did not contain confirmation of abutter notification.  The Board was not able to take action on the application.  Mr. Culbert said abutter notification would be confirmed and the application would be date specified to the April 5, 2004 meeting.       

 

Map 38 Lot 1-153 – Neault (Gagnon) – Sherburne Road – Proposed 2-Lot Subdivision for consideration

 

The Planning Board file did not contain confirmation of abutter notification, therefore, the application was date specified to the Planning Board meeting of April 5, 2004.

 

Map 4 Lot 9-69-15 – DiGrazia – Arlene Drive – Proposed 2-Lot Subdivision for consideration

 

The Planning Board file did not contain confirmation of abutter notification, therefore, the application was date specified to the Planning Board meeting of April 5, 2004.

 

OLD BUSINESS

 

Map 7 Lot 4-185 – Geoffrey Detellis – Benoit Avenue – Proposed 4-Lot Subdivision and Seeking Special Permit for Wetland Crossing for continued consideration

 

Mr. Mike Gospodarek, Herbert Associates presented the revised plan to the Board.  Since the last meeting, the plans had been submitted to Dufresne-Henry (Town Engineer), who in turn had submitted a report of observations/concerns to be addressed by the applicant.  Mr. Peter Zohdi, Herbert Associates believed the driveway profile should be addressed.  Mr. Culbert said the Board would begin by reviewing the report submitted by Dufresne-Henry. 

 

Mr. Gospodarek reviewed the report submitted by Dufresne-Henry.  He said that the plan numbers would be added.  He believed there was a conflict in the regulations regarding the footage for a cul-de-sac turning radius.  Mr. Zohdi had a problem with requesting a waiver because he was unable to locate a set of subdivision regulations that had been signed by the Planning Board (or any member).  It was his belief that he should be able to work under the old regulations, since a signed copy of the updated regulations could not be located.  Mr. Scanzani didn’t feel that the subdivision regulations had to be signed by the Planning Board since they were adopted, and the amendments were accepted.  Mr. D’Andrea clarified the cul-de-sac radius regulations and read a portion aloud.          

 

Mr. Gospodarek said that the cross section for the wetlands would be added.  There was a discussion regarding easements and the width of the right-of-way.  Mr. Geoffrey Detellis noted that the Fire Chief had signed the plan that showed the gravel access being ten feet; the roadway was shown as eighteen feet.  Mr. Rene LaBranche, Dufresne-Henry said the suggestion being made was for the driveway easement to be eighteen feet, and the Town property access easement to be twenty feet. 

 

Mr. Gospodarek was unsure if a waiver for the common driveway had been previously submitted, so he submitted a waiver to the Board.  He went on to discuss the intersection of Benoit Avenue and Rocky Hill Road.  He said there was a recommendation to submit a waiver for the intersection because it didn’t meet the 2% road grade.  He didn’t feel a waiver was needed because the street was pre-existing and approved with a 4% grade going to 10%.  He said the plan proposed a 3.9% going to a 10% grade.  He went on to discuss the turn-around and said they didn’t feel an additional turn-around was needed.  Mr. LaBranche said the issue was turn-outs which allow vehicles to pass each other.  Mr. Gospodarek felt the road, being eighteen feet wide, was adequate to pass two vehicles on.  Ms. Bousa pointed out that a typical parking spot was 10’x20’.  Mr. Zohdi said the Board had requested that the curves be widened and makes the grade gentle.  Mr. LaBranche discussed the concerns with snow removal.  He suggested making the turning points wider.  Mr. Gospodarek said that the bottom and top curves were filled, so additional material could be brought; the middle curve was cut and he could add an additional three feet, or so. 

 

Mr. Gospodarek said that flow arrows and details will be added to the plan.  He said that a level spreader would be added to help eliminate a point source.  Mr. Scanzani asked if the level spreader would work in the winter.  Mr. LaBranche felt spreading the flow was better than allowing focus flow.  Mr. Scanzani asked if there was another method that may work better.  Mr. LaBranche believed that rip rap may work because it was more stable.  Mr. Zohdi said there would not be a problem adding the rip rap because it was part of the original design. 

 

Dufresne-Henry’s report recommended that cross sections be added at the points with large cut and fill.  Mr. Zohdi said they would work with, and satisfy Dufresne-Henry.  Side slopes were then discussed.  Mr. LaBranche asked that details be noted.  Mr. Zohdi said until the work began, they would not know what was needed; he went on to say they would work with Dufresne-Henry and the Town inspector on site.  Mr. Culbert said the point was that the 1-1 slopes would not be soil.  Mr. Scanzani said that the drainage flow would also need to be stabilized. 

 

Mr. Gospodarek discussed the drainage that would tie in to Benoit Avenue.  He said they could add strong note on the plan that would be worked out in the field.  Mr. Scanzani said that the as-built would show what was done. 

 

Mr. Gospodarek went back to the issue of the intersection of Benoit Avenue and Rocky Hill Road.  He believed because the road was previously approved, they didn’t feel a waiver was necessary, but would submit one if the Board desired.  The Board asked that a waiver be submitted. 

 

Mr. Gospodarek ended by discussing the drainage report, which was based upon a twenty-five year storm event (the same as the Benoit Avenue development).  He said that the regulations outline a fifty-year storm event.  He noted that the proposed plan complied with a twenty-five year storm event, with a ten-year design.  Mr. LaBranche said the report was based upon the Town’s regulations.  Mr. Culbert said historically, the Board went with a twenty-five year plan.  He didn’t have a problem granting a waiver for one driveway with two homes.  Mr. Gospodarek submitted a waiver request to the Board.    

 

There were miscellaneous notes in the Dufresne-Henry report that the applicant didn’t discuss, other than to say they would comply with the recommendation. 

 

Mr. McNamara asked if the special permit for work in the WCD (pursuant to Zoning Ordinance 307:40) had been submitted.  Mr. Gospodarek answered yes.  Mr. Zohdi said that the Conservation Commission and the DES had already approved the dredge and fill.

 

Mr. Yarmo said the Conservation Commission had made a couple suggestions that had not been objected to such as moving the treatment swale out of the WCD.  He said there was also some discussion regarding erosion control due to the steep slopes.  Mr. Gospodarek discussed the treatment swale design.  Mr. Zohdi discussed the type of cut that would have to be made to change the design, which would make the slopes steeper.  He said they were trying to work with the topography of the land. 

 

Ms. Bousa was slightly confused by the fact that the Fire Chief signed the driveway profile (sheet 12 of 13) that showed over 600ft. of the driveway at a 12% grade, but in a letter from the Fire Chief dated October 17th saying that the driveway should have no more than a 10% grade.  Mr. Zohdi said at that time, the grading was going to be 12% the entire way, but since the last meeting, the grading had been varied.  Mr. Culbert asked that a new letter be obtained from the Fire Chief. 

 

Mr. Scanzani said that there was a wetland crossing request (special permit), that the Board should have a request for.  Mr. Zohdi said the request was submitted at the time the application was submitted.  He said he would resubmit if the Board desired.  Mr. Scanzani was unable to find the special permit request.  Mr. Zohdi said they would submit a written request.     

 

There was no public input. 

 

Mr. Scanzani noted that the file contained copies of the driveway easement documents.  Mr. Zohdi said if the plan was approved, the documents would be sent to Town Counsel for review.  Mr. McNamara asked if an enforceability provision was included in the documentation given to the Town.  Attorney Paul DeCarolis, representing the applicant, said the documents forwarded were: 1) the initial obligation/construction maintenance repairs (solely by the two lot owners); 2) release of liability of the Town for any claims regarding the driveway; 3) property owners to keep the easement open for use by the Fire Department; 4) release of liability per Town Subdivision Regulations.  Mr. McNamara wanted a mechanism to ensure that the access to the Town property would be kept open.  Attorney DeCarolis said a declaration of a cross-access easement was included, as well as the covenant for the common driveway (subject to the easement registered at the Registry of Deeds).  He said the declaration would provide that the property owners would have to keep the property maintained and open for use of the easement.  He said he could add that the property owners were obligated to maintain up to the top of the cul-de-sac.  Mr. Culbert understood that access would be up to the Town property (including plowing the area out in the winter).  Attorney DeCarolis said that Town Counsel would review the documents and any comments would be incorporated. 

 

Mr. Scanzani discussed Zoning Ordinance 307-40 (treatment swales within the wetland buffer) and the fact that a special permit had been submitted for approval.  Mr. Lynde asked if the Conservation Commission had reviewed the plans.  Mr. Yarmo said the Conservation Commission had made comments. 

 

MOTION:

(Scanzani/McNamara) To approve the special permit as requested (per Zoning Ordinance 307-40).

 

VOTE:

 

(7-0-0) The motion carried.   

 

The Board then discussed the waiver requests as follows:

 

Center line curvature – There was a conflict in the Subdivision Regulations between Appendix I (minimum center line 430’) – Appendix XI (200’). 

 

MOTION:

(Scanzani/McNamara) To accept, for consideration, the waiver request of the curve radius to be reduced to 150’.   

 

VOTE:

 

(7-0-0) The motion carried.

 

 

MOTION:

(Scanzani/McNamara) To approve the waiver request of the curve radius as requested.  

 

VOTE:

 

(7-0-0) The motion carried.

 

Driveway access and the common driveway:

 

MOTION:

() To accept, for consideration, the waiver request for the driveway access/common driveway as requested.

 

VOTE:

 

(7-0-0) The motion carries.  

 

 

MOTION:

(Scanzani/Ouellette) To approve the waiver for a common driveway subject to the covanence being approved by both sides (Town and applicant) and recorded at the Registry of Deeds.

 

VOTE:

 

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

 

Roadway design (Appendix I) maximum grade of the vertical alignment at the intersection approaching 3% within 100ft. of the intersection – the applicant was requesting 3.9%.  There was a previous subdivision with an access stub that had been approved.  For connectivity and smooth grading transition the applicant requested the waiver. 

 

MOTION:

(Lynde/McNamara) To accept, for consideration, the waiver request of the roadway design grade.  

 

VOTE:

 

(7-0-0) The motion carried.  

 

 

MOTION:

(Scanzani/Lynde) To approved the waiver request of the roadway design as submitted.  

 

VOTE:

 

(7-0-0) The motion carried.  

 

Storm water (Appendix V) – waiver requested reduction from fifty-year storm event to a twenty-five-year storm event.  It was noted that the length of the road was 600ft from the beginning of the cul-de-sac and the length from the beginning around the cul-de-sac was 850ft. 

 

MOTION:

(McNamara/Ouellette) To accept, for consideration, the waiver request for the storm water event to be reduced to twenty-five years.   

 

VOTE:

 

(7-0-0) The motion carried.   

 

 

MOTION:

(Scanzani/Lynde) To approve the waiver request for the storm water event to be reduced to twenty-five years.

 

VOTE:

 

(2-5-0) The motion failed.  Mr. Scanzani, Mr. McNamara, Ms. Ouellette, Ms. Bousa and Mr. Yarmo voted no.

 

Mr. Zohdi said they would be glad to provide a fifty-year storm event plan to the Town Engineer.  The Board went on to discuss conditions of approval as follows: 1) revise to show fifty-year storm water event; 2) address issues covered in Dufresne-Henry report; 3) covenant to be reviewed and approved by both Town Counsel and the applicant; 4) Fire Chief to submit a new letter regarding 10% slope; 5) plan updated to show twenty foot easement (cleared) for top portion accessing Raymond Park (10 feet of which will be gravel); 6) slope stabilization to be done on site with inspector present; 7) level spreader will instead be rip rap; 8) strong note for drainage; 9) Fire Chief’s 5000gallon cistern design to be attached to the plan; 10) driveway turnouts to be widened at least three feet (to twenty-one feet); 11) confirmation of all the state permits. 

 

There was a brief discussion regarding the roadway connecting to the parcel owned by Two M Construction.  Mr. Zohdi said that his client would build the extension as proposed on the plan.   

 

Mr. Scanzani questioned if a performance bond should be put in place.  The Board agreed it was a good point, but it would need to be further discussed at an upcoming work session.  There was an understanding that revised plans would be submitted to Dufresne-Henry for final review/compliance of conditions.  It was also understood that Mr. D’Andrea would over-see the revisions and review of the plans. 

 

MOTION:

(Scanzani/McNamara) To approve the plan subject to the following conditions:  1) revise to show fifty-year storm water event; 2) address issues covered in Dufresne-Henry report; 3) covenant to be reviewed and approved by both Town Counsel and the applicant; 4) Fire Chief to submit a new letter regarding 10% slope; 5) plan updated to show twenty foot easement (cleared) for top portion accessing Raymond Park (10 feet of which will be gravel); 6) slope stabilization to be done on site with inspector present; 7) level spreader will instead be rip rap; 8) strong note for drainage; 9) Fire Chief’s 5000gallon cistern design to be attached to the plan; 10) driveway turnouts to be widened at least three feet (to twenty-one feet); 11) confirmation of all the state permits. 

 

VOTE:

(5-1-1) The motion carried.  Ms. Bousa voted no.  Mr. McNamara abstained.   

 

Map 1 Lot 5-104, 113, 115 – Sousa Realty & Development – Lawrence Corner – Proposed 20-Lot Subdivision – Court Ordered Remand

 

Mr. Scanzani summarized by informing that the Board had originally heard and denied the case based upon 400ft. site distance/increase of traffic to Mammoth Road intersection; subdivision as proposed road would narrow from twenty-four feet to twenty feet when intersecting with Mammoth Road; problem with right-of-way to Lynch property being unclear if it could be extended; one roadway (one egress) looping around (which fell under the cul-de-sac regulation and exceeded the maximum length); creation of an unsafe condition at the site; road drainage onto Old Lawrence Road not adequately defined; site was premature development.  He said since the denial, the applicant had brought the Board’s decision to court, which was in turn rejected by the court and remanded back to the Board.  The Board felt there was substantial ground for the original denial and requested an appeal from the New Hampshire Supreme Court, which was denied.  Under the Superior Court rule, the Board shall provide Sousa Realty & Development with a new hearing.  Town Counsel, Diane Gorrow said the Board was confined by the Superior Court’s Decision; the aspects left open were 1) Board has to consider the 400ft. site distance from Mammoth Road intersection safe, however the court left the possibility for the Board to apply the ASHTO guidelines, and require the developer to come up with a contribution proportional to the increase in traffic; 2) plan can’t be denied based upon the road narrowing from twenty-four feet within the subdivision to twenty feet at the Lawrence Corner Road intersection, or based upon final road design, or drainage plans. 

 

Mr. McNamara wanted to know if the Board could base its decision on any factual changes that may have occurred on or around the property since the original consideration.  Attorney Gorrow found it difficult to answer the question without specifics.  She believed the Board was confined to the regulations (pre November 2001) applied during the original hearing. 

 

Ms. Bousa disclosed since the original hearing, her company had performed work for Mr. Sousa, in another town, on a different project.  She asked the Board and the applicant if they would prefer that she step down. 

 

Mr. Yarmo also disclosed that the applicant’s attorney had done some work for him in the past (approximately two years ago). 

 

Attorney Gorrow felt it would be best if Mr. Yarmo recuse himself from the case.  She didn’t see a problem with Ms. Bousa remaining seated on the Board.  Attorney William Mason, representing Mary Farm Trust (an abutter), believed the criteria applying to Mr. Yarmo should also apply to Ms. Bousa. 

 

Mr. Yarmo and Ms. Bousa recused themselves from the Board. 

 

Attorney Brad Westgate, Weiner & Bennet (Concord Street, Nashua NH), representing the applicant, provided the Board with a summary of the proposed development.  He explained that the property currently contained two lots of land (approximately forty-seven [47] acres of land) located near 128 Mammoth Road.  The plan (application) was first submitted to the Board in September 2001; hearings were held between December, 2001 and June, 2002 when they concluded.  The seven reasons listed by the Board for denial of the plan were appealed by the applicant; at which time the court ruled in affect, that none of the seven reasons were justifiable reasons for denial.  The court remanded the case; the Town requested Supreme Court review and was denied.  Attorney Westgate noted that an updated plan (from that which the Board reviewed in 2001 – 2002) was submitted to Mr. D’Andrea; the differences shown on the plan were: 1) there was no right-of-way shown to the Lynch property; 2) storm water management program language had been updated to be consistent with the new Federal EPA language; 3) proposed work on the existing portion of Lawrence Corner Road is now shown on the plan (drainage configuration will remain in the same manner, except there will be a bit more impervious surface).  He said the drainage should be discussed; it was his belief because the drainage volume didn’t change in any substantial manner the necessity of a formal drainage study may be implausible, but they would be happy to discuss.  Attorney Westgate respectfully submitted that the plan should be approved given that the submitted plan was consistent with the precepts of and within the bounds of the court order. 

 

Mr. Tony Basso, Haynor/Swanson (applicant’s project engineering firm), said the intent was to maintain the stone walls and keep the character of Lawrence Corner Road (with as little tree cutting as possible).  He said he would be happy to work with the Town consultant regarding drainage, to come to a resolution.

 

Mr. Kim Hazavardian, applicant’s project traffic engineer, said that the site distance at the Mammoth Road intersection was what the state required throughout their system. 

 

Mr. Basso let it be known that the applicant still offered (as they had originally) to contribute $1000 per lot (for a total of $20,000) toward whatever improvements were needed.

 

Mr. Lynde asked for the proposed length of the roadway.  He said there was a provision within the Subdivision Regulations and Master Plan that open space be provided.  He noted that the plan didn’t provide open space and felt it should be addressed.  He discussed the length of the road, and the safety concerns (also argued by the Police and Fire Chiefs) that lead the Town to create the cul-de-sac regulation.  He suspected that one reason for denial was due to the total length exceeding the cul-de-sac regulation in length, even though the road was not a typical cul-de-sac.  The issue for the Police and Fire Chiefs was gaining access to dead end subdivisions over lengthy roads if a portion was blocked off.  Another safety issue was the Fire Department’s ability to run a hose and deliver sufficient water and pressure, as well as the ability to evacuate an area.  Mr. Basso said the proposed road, from the intersection of Castle Hill to the furthest point, was approximately 2550ft.  He said the length to the two access points was approximately 1250ft.  Mr. Lynde discussed the issue of public safety for the people residing in the subdivision; if the entrance of the subdivision was blocked, there would be no other means for emergency access.        

 

Mr. Scanzani asked for an explanation of the drainage, as proposed, for the roadway surface going out to Mammoth Road.  Mr. Basso said they were proposing to leave the road with sheet drainage, as it currently had.  Mr. Scanzani wanted to know if the pavement would be directly up to the stone wall when the roads were expanded to twenty feet.  Mr. Basso answered no.  He said they tried to ‘wiggle’ the road back and forth and tried to preserve some of the larger trees, slopes and stone walls wherever they could.  He showed the areas that would be widened.  He explained that the fifty-foot right-of-way would begin to taper out at station eight and would be at full pavement width at approximately station ten.  Mr. Scanzani said the Board should review the drainage on the road portion of the plan.  Mr. Basso said sheet drainage had previously been reviewed with the former Town consultant Tom Sommers, who wanted a little shoulder room, which was how the plan was being presented.  Mr. Scanzani said he also wanted to ensure that there wouldn’t be a situation with water congregating on the road in the event of heavy rains.  He said another key would be how the crown of the road was done.  Mr. Basso said he would gladly meet with the Town consultant and work out the scope to be reviewed by the Board.  Mr. Scanzani recommended that the existing drainage report be submitted to Dufresne-Henry for review since the original report didn’t contain information regarding the drainage for the upper portion of the subdivision.  Mr. Scanzani said the issues were snow removal, drainage off the road, and the road being crowned properly.

 

Attorney Westgate pointed out that the court determined that the cul-de-sac regulations did not apply; the road was looped; any discussion regarding road length was academic and not germane to the pending issue before the Board.  He said open space had been brought up before the Board in 2002, but the Board did not list it as a reason for denial, therefore he felt the issue was foreclosed and not pending before the Board for consideration.  Mr. Culbert said he would review the minutes to see where the open space issue had been left. 

 

Mr. McNamara respectfully disagreed with the applicant’s counsel and read aloud the last line of the judge’s decision (…the Board shall provide Sousa with a new hearing with respect to the subdivision plan and shall fully and fairly consider the application pursuant to it’s subdivision regulations and related ordinances) (other than ruling out the items the Board based it’s denial on).  He believed since the Board was conducting a hearing, the Board could take points into consideration, such as the length of road as it affected the safety of people in the furthest reaches of the proposed plan.  Attorney Westgate stated that the issue of the length and design of the road, being a loop road, was no longer an issue before the Board from any perspective, whether it be cul-de-sac length, or definition, or safety issues because they were all wrapped up in the issues addressed by the Board which the court found were not reasonable basis for denial of the plan.  He said open space had been brought up by the Board, but not imposed upon the applicant as a requirement; the design was also not before the Board for any future hearing.  He discussed statute 674:4 in which a board had to state reasons for denying a plan.  He said because open space was not a reason for denial, he didn’t feel it should be in the scope, or mentioned now.  Attorney Gorrow (Town Counsel) could not recall if open space had been mentioned at previous meetings.  She discussed the court’s decision, that a new hearing was to be held and considered under the subdivision regulations.  She didn’t feel the Board could go back and reconsider the items that the court clearly stated was not proper denial reasons; there may be a whole host of other things that may have come into play if the Board had not given the denial reasons provided.  Mr. McNamara didn’t feel that it made sense for the court to send the plan back to the Board if nothing could be considered.  He said the court sent the plan back for further consideration and believed it included some of the things being discussed. 

 

Mr. Scanzani said there was a concern regarding the Tennessee Gas Line crossing and the recommendation by the former the Town engineer, at a minimum an emergency access should be maintained.  Mr. Basso showed the approximate location of the gas line and said it cut across the road to the east.  He said an access easement had been included on the plan (approximately two-rod). 

 

PUBLIC INPUT

 

Attorney William Mason, representing Mary Farm Trust (abutting property), said one significant difference of the plan being presented was that the right-of-way to the Lynch property had been eliminated.  He felt for safety and emergency purposes having the right-of-way was important, to provide an additional egress to the parcel.  He said it would be nice to have the fifty-foot stub located where it could gain reasonable access to the next door neighbor so when their property was subdivided, the proposed subdivision could tie-in and provide the residents another way out to Castle Hill Road. 

 

Mr. Culbert said the Board had requested, from a lot of developers, tie-ins to large tracts so the Town didn’t get stuck with a cul-de-sac.  Attorney Westgate said this was the first time in two years that there was a concern for the residents of the proposed plan.  He said the issue had always been the right-of-way and access to the Lynch property for development purposes.  He noted that the court found there was no enforceable regulation that the project provide any such right-of-way due to the fact that the plan was being reviewed under the Town’s old regulations.  He said if safety was a concern it should have been brought up by the Lynch family and the Board.  Mr. Culbert questioned if it was good planning practice to look in the future at a parcel that may be subdivided later to retain an access out.  Mr. Basso answered yes.  Mr. Scanzani said that a planning board in its approval process always had the jurisdiction to review a parcel and request things that may not be specifically in the subdivision regulations.  For many years the Board tried to make sure that roads connected.  Mr. Scanzani said one reason long cul-de-sacs had been approved in the past was when abutting parcels were developed, an additional egress could be obtained.  He said in this case there were other large lots in the area that had not yet been subdivided and the more stubs provided, the better off the road connectivity of the area would be. 

 

Mr. David Lynch, Lawrence Corner Road, felt a point to consider was if there were no provisions for a right-of-way, and the abutting property was going to be developed; the only ingress would be through the pasture so the whole property would be developed at once.  However if a right-of-way was provided the development of the abutting parcel could be staggered.  Mr. Lynch recalled that he discussed the roadway and the safety factor of the dangerous driveway entrance on Lawrence Corner Road during the initial review of the plan.  He also discussed the fact that people walked along the roadway and didn’t know how it factored in to the plan and the road width since the current roadway was narrow.        

 

Mr. Edward Lynch, Lawrence Corner Road, said that the proposed right-of-way leading into the industrial park had been closed through a vote at Town Meeting, and was now a private piece of land.  He said if the right-of-way was used for an emergency way it could not just simply be opened; the process would be more complicated.  

 

Mr. Scanzani said that the original plan included a right-of-way to the Lynch property and the Board provided the court with a clarifying statement indicating that the problem with respect to the topography of the area (steep slopes) was that the alternative area would require a wetland crossing to build a road; the court stated that there was no indication in the record that the Board was ever concerned with the location of the easement, further there is no regulation, or ordinance, that require the petitioner to provide the easement.  He asked the applicant if they were willing to give the Lynch property an easement at a location of their choice.  Mr. Culbert added that the easement should access usable land.  Attorney Westgate said they were not presently prepared to make any representation, commitment or consideration for a right-of-way to the Lynch property.  He said they had not heard from the Lynch family, but if contacted by the Lynch family, would speak with them.

 

Mr. Lynde pointed out if the plan was being reviewed under the old regulations, the cul-de-sac length was previously 1000ft.  He said he would not approve a right-of-way without an additional point of egress.  He said from a planning point of view the Board should direct where a right-of-way would be located.  He addressed public safety, which was also a concern of the Police and Fire Departments, who provided input when requesting changes to proposed plans.  He believed the plan should be submitted to the Technical Review Committee for comment; one item that should also be addressed was how the public safety concern could be eased. 

 

Mr. Culbert believed that the court gave the Board the ability to address open space and asked the applicant to review it.  Attorney Westgate said they would review open space, but first would review the old regulations to see if open space was required. 

 

Mr. Culbert said the first thing to happen was the plans would be forwarded to the Technical Review Committee.  Mr. Basso said the plans had already gone through the technical review process in the past.  He didn’t have a problem with the revisions being reviewed (road widening, drainage etc.), but was opposed to the plan being reviewed in whole, since it had already been through that process.  Mr. Culbert said they would research what type of review the plan had undergone.  Mr. Basso wanted to clarify the request for the right-of-way to the Lynch property; he said during initial review, he didn’t get the opportunity to rebut the statements made that the right-of-way had been placed into a wetland.  He said he would have provided additional testimony (regarding the slopes and buffers) if given the chance.  Mr. Culbert said that the Board was looking for a right-of-way to help road connectivity and safety (as they had during the Spring Street area subdivisions which took approximately thirteen years to complete). 

 

There was a brief discussion regarding what the court was requesting of the Board.  Mr. Culbert said that the plan (including the drainage report) would be reviewed by the Town’s engineering company and the Technical Review Committee.  He said that the applicant had agreed to re-think the open space issue and was also open to being contacted by the Lynch family regarding a right-of-way.  It was noted that the abutter notification process had been followed. 

 

The application was date specified for the Planning Board meeting of April 5, 2004.

 

Mr. Yarmo and Ms. Bousa returned to the Board.

 

Map 7 Lot 4-180-17 – Two M Construction – Benoit Avenue – Proposed 2-Lot Subdivision for continued consideration

 

Per the request of the applicant, the application was date specified for the Planning Board meeting of April 5, 2004. 

 

Map 24 Lot 12-224 – Anastasia Wickwire – 43 Ledge Road – Proposed 2-Lot Subdivision for continued consideration

 

Per the request of the applicant, the application was date specified for the Planning Board meeting of April 5, 2004. 

 

Map 39 Lo 6-179 – 128 Realty Corporation – Mammoth Road – Proposed 9-Lot Subdivision and Seeking Special Permit for Wetland Crossing for continued consideration

 

Per the request of the applicant, the application was date specified for the Planning Board meeting of April 5, 2004. 

 

MINUTES

 

February 23, 2004deferred to next scheduled meeting.

 

MISCELLANEOUS DISCUSSION

 

Mr. McNamara noted that he read an article regarding a significant development that was proposed for Mammoth Road on the Dracut/Pelham line (some of which in Pelham).  He said it had been continued because some of the Dracut Planning Board had concerns.  He believed that it would have an affect regarding traffic and the Board’s planning.  Mr. Culbert said the Town was supposed to be notified of any development that would affect the Town.  Mr. D’Andrea didn’t recall seeing notification of a development of that size, but will follow up. 

 

Mr. Lynde notified the Board that he was at the end of his three-year appointment to the Board as Selectmen’s Representative.  He said he enjoyed his time on the Board and asked that the Board continue its hard work and urged that open space be continued to be discussed.  He suggested that the Fire Chief not sign sheets/plans, but rather plans be reviewed by the Technical Review Committee as a whole.  Mr. Scanzani said he had suggested that plans contain a sheet with detailed information for easy reference.

 

DATE SPECIFIED PLANS

 

April 5, 2004

 

Map 1 Lot 5-104, 113, 115 – Sousa Realty & Development – Lawrence Corner – Proposed 20-Lot Subdivision – Court Ordered Remand

 

Map 7 Lot 4-180-17 – Two M Construction – Benoit Avenue – Proposed 2-Lot Subdivision for continued consideration

 

Map 24 Lot 12-224 – Anastasia Wickwire – 43 Ledge Road – Proposed 2-Lot Subdivision for continued consideration

 

Map 39 Lo 6-179 – 128 Realty Corporation – Mammoth Road – Proposed 9-Lot Subdivision and Seeking Special Permit for Wetland Crossing for continued consideration

 

Map 29 Lot 7-41 – David Bibeau – 36 Atwood Road – Site Plan Application to construct a 30’x40’ garage within the Wetland Conservation District adjacent to a Prime Wetland

 

Map 38 Lot 1-153 – Neault (Gagnon) – Sherburne Road – Proposed 2-Lot Subdivision for consideration

 

Map 4 Lot 9-69-15 – DiGrazia – Arlene Drive – Proposed 2-Lot Subdivision for consideration

 

ADJOURNMENT

 

A motion was made and seconded to adjourn the meeting.

 

The meeting was adjourned at approximately 11:20pm.

                                                                                          Respectfully submitted,

 

                                                                                          Charity A. L. Willis

                                                                                          Recording Secretary