Planning Board Discusses Multiple Projects


The Planning Board met Monday evening, May 23, at 7 pm. Chair Greg Rondeau took up “general business” starting with an `endorsement’ for 120 constitution Boulevard, which was approved. Next was a field change for 15 Freedom Way involving catch basin issues. After some discussion, this was also approved. The Board then voted to reappoint member Rick Power as their representative on the Community Preservation Commission.

Clerk, Beth Werling, deviated from the agenda briefly. Noticing several people in attendance whom she believed to be there because of their interesting the proposed Taj Estates at 230 East Central St, scheduled for later in the evening, she spoke directly to them noting that the applicant had made a request for a continuance only hours earlier. Some in attendance expressed annoyance but Werling noted that as soon as practical, such changes are normally posted for the public’s benefit.

The Board then went to its first scheduled hearing, a project on Upper Union Street. Nick Dewhurst, speaking for the applicant, noted that he and the developer had been consulting with DPW engineer Mike Maglio as well as with BETA group, the town’s consultant.

He said most of the changes were minor and technical but other changes included adding a sidewalk along Upper Union and additional landscaping at the rear of the site. Dewhurst noted that he had also been working with the Conservation Commission and is “confident that we’ve satisfied all their issues and we expect approval from them at this Thursday’s meeting.” He said there was also a slight refinement of the regaining wall.

After a lengthy discussion, including a question about whether any parking could be eliminated to provide more landscaping, the chair determined that there still “loose ends” to be taken care of and asked for and received a motion to continue to hearing to June 6.
The next matter was 341 Union Street, where applicant Bob Vozzella, along with United Consultants, was seeking a Special Permit & Limited Site Plan for a Brewery, distillery or winery production with Tasting Room. The proposal had been before the Board about a month earlier and in the intervening time comments from board members, the planning department, and town engineer had been addressed. Some of the issues included defining placement of a dumpster and providing 1 parking space for each 500 sf of building. These issues were addressed (22 spaces being provided when 19 are required).

There were more questions from the board regarding snow storage, site access, signage (none planned), etc. but in the end, the Board moved on to a discussion of 158 Grove Street (location of 67 Degrees brewing).

There, the issues being discussed revolved around parking, safety, sufficiency of barriers between vehicles and customers and egress pathways (too narrow, in the view of the board).

Without seemingly taking action, the meeting adjourned.

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