The Raynham Planning Board meeting on Thursday, November 15, 2012, at Raynham Veterans’ Memorial Town Hall, was opened at 6:05 p.m. by Chairman Daniel Andrade.
Board members present: Daniel Andrade, Burke Fountain, Christopher Gallagher, Henry Ellis, Russell Driscoll
Board members not present: (all present)
Staff present: Town Planner Marilyn Whalley, Administrative Assistant Maureen McKenney
6:05 p.m. – Caitlyn Estates (located off White Street): Developer Steve Joyce appeared before the Board to request extension of time to complete the subdivision. Written request dated October 19, 2012 was received from Mr. Joyce. Letter dated November 6, 2012 was received from Highway Superintendent Roger Stolte. Fax dated November 7, 2012 was received from McSweeney & Ricci Insurance Agency regarding the bond for Caitlyn Estates/Christina’s Path.
Mr. Andrade noted that Mr. Stolte’s letter cited many issues with the subdivision but the main concern now is the condition of the binder, which Mr. Stolte said appeared to be in good condition. Mr. Gallagher stated he saw the binder and it is in good shape. Mr. Joyce noted the binder is about five years old. Mr. Andrade advised that a binder inspection will be needed when the road is constructed.
Ms. Whalley noted Mr. Stolte and the Conservation Commission are concerned with debris on the Open-Space lot. Mr. Joyce noted there is topsoil at the edge of placeLot 7 but not on the Open-Space lot.
Ms. Whalley noted the Open-Space lot has not been transferred to the Town. Mr. Joyce said he wants to take care of the matter but is not sure how to proceed. Mr. Andrade advised him to contact his attorney, and the attorney can contact Mr. Fountain if necessary. It was noted that two of the three Open-Space lots were transferred to the Town. Mrs. McKenney will research to confirm whether or not third lot was transferred and contact Mr. Joyce.
Mr. Fountain moved to extend the time to complete Caitlyn Estates for two years and the Highway Superintendent will inspect after two years; second by Mr. Gallagher; motion passed unanimously. Certificate of Action will be filed.
6:15 p.m. – Public hearing for solar by-law fees was opened. Mr. Gallagher read the hearing notice. Mr. Andrade asked if anyone present had any questions. No one responded.
Ms. Whalley asked if the Board had questions. Mr. Ellis asked if surrounding communities had similar fees. Ms. Whalley stated she did not check re. submittal fees but did check for project review fees.
Mr. Jarred Connel asked if the fees are in the by-law. Ms. Whalley explained they are part of the Planning Board’s fee schedule.
Mr. Fountain moved to approve the fees as set forth in the hearing notice; second by Mr. Gallagher; motion passed on unanimous vote.
6:19 p.m. – Rte. 138 Study: Grant King, Principle Comprehensive Planner, SRPEDD, appeared before the Board to discuss the study that was prepared and completed by a committee of eight citizens, including Mr. Andrade. Ms. Whalley said she would like the Planning Board’s approval for the action items in the study report.
Mr. Andrade discussed the committee’s work, noting everyone wanted the best solution for Rte. 138 and there was a consensus to protect all along the roadway. He noted the Town received a $10,000 grant to continue the study work.
Mr. King presented the study report and discussed it, noting there were many categories of data to study, such as traffic, pavement, crash rates, environmental considerations, zoning, protected areas, etc. He noted the committee developed probable and possible scenarios of development, including the rail and gaming. He noted a March 2013 deadline has been set by the State for permitting the rail.
Mr. King explained that a mixed use overlay district for a 2.2 mile stretch got the most support and recommendation from the committee. Mr. King is hoping to convene a committee to write a mixed-use overlay district by-law for the next Town Meeting.
Mr. Andrade noted that rather than change the zoning of Rte. 138, the Planning Board would have separate rules and regulations for the overlay district. Mr. King noted that would leave the by-right zoning as it is now.
Ms. Whalley discussed the reasons for the overlay district, noting that the property owners and those who live on Rte. 138 are most affected and are also looking for a way to add value to their properties. It was noted the rules and regulations were not completed at this stage but will be drafted and better defined at the next round of study.
Mr. King noted the Rte. 138 study document is available at SRPEDD.org/southcoast rail page/technical archive. Mr. Andrade requested the study be put on the Raynham website.
John Teixeira, First Street resident, spoke and noted the overlay will allow people on Rte. 138 the flexibility of selling their property while also protecting the residential properties, and the regulations will define what can and cannot be done and will better manage and control growth.
John Kokoroyannis, Broadway resident, spoke and congratulated all the neighbors and committee members who worked together and cooperated on the study, along with Ms. Whalley, who was great assistance to the committee. He noted that with the overlay plan, properties will not gradually diminish in value. Mr. Andrade agreed with Mr. Kokoroyannis.
Mr. Fountain asked for an explanation of an overlay district. Mr. King explained that it is a mechanism used statewide as a supplement to zoning, and it incorporates targeted standards. Mr. King noted this will be a mixed use overlay that will clearly define uses and flexibility. During discussion, it was noted the underlying zoning of the area becomes an option for use and the overlay expands the ability for other uses. It was also noted the state only has jurisdiction on the roadway within the 60 ft. layout.
There was discussion of the possibility of Rte. 138 becoming a 4-lane road. Mr. King noted it could not happen unless properties were taken and there are many high-value properties in the area and there could not be sidewalks or breakdown lanes, which would not be good for quality of life in the area.
After discussion, Mr. Gallagher moved the Board approve the recommendations in the study and support the idea of going forward with funds; second by Mr. Fountain; motion passed by unanimous vote.
Mr. Andrade thanked Grant King for the presentation. Ms. Whalley suggested adding some new members from Town boards and departments to go forward on the committee. Mr. Andrade noted the plan will set the footprint for Route 138. Mr. Ellis thanked SRPEDD for their work on the matter.
Town Planner update: Ms. Whalley discussed the intersection at Broadway/Center Street. She noted the improvements requested by the Board for a turning lane seemed stalled at addressStreetMass. Highway. She noted there is an $800,000 surety bond posted by WalMart for road improvement work but she is concerned about the intersection getting done because WalMart can get an occupancy permit without the traffic signal work being done. Mr. Andrade noted the Board will have to push the issue forward. Ms. Whalley said she will alert the next planner.
The Board discussed the Open Space Preservation by-law, Section 14.5.g, regarding the affordable housing requirement. Ms. Whalley recommended the Board move forward on the matter with the new planner to amend the by-law to include mitigation to the Town of Raynham for affordable housing. The Board agreed that any affordable housing funds received should go to Raynham Housing Authority.
Ms. Whalley informed the Board that Marc Antine sent a letter on October 19, 2012 to Bond Safeguard Insurance Company demanding the Berry Hill bond within 20 days or the Town may file civil action. There has been no response yet. Mr. Andrade noted the Board must determine the amount to be gifted to the Town to move forward to claim the bond. Ms. Whalley asked if she should contact the bank on the matter. The Board voted unanimously that Ms. Whalley should proceed.
Ms. Whalley discussed the new solar by-law, noting the amendment to allow solar in a wetland district failed at Town Meeting, and the Board could consider amending at Town Meeting in the future by adding solar in a wetland district by special permit. Mr. Gallagher discussed that the zoning map lines may not accurately reflect wetlands. He noted wetlands are protected by the Wetlands Protection Act.
Jarred Connell addressed the Board and showed a map indicating a wetlands district off addressStreetPleasant Street and Gushee Pond, noting much of the land in that district is upland. Ms. Whalley noted Mass. GIS is not always accurate. Mr. Fountain noted it is unfair to restrict land if it is clearly not wetlands but is high/dry land.
Mr. Connell suggested correcting the boundaries to follow the actual wetland lines or include Wetlands District as allowed for solar. The Board discussed allowing by special permit. Mr. Gallagher noted that could be costly for applicants.
Wayne Arms, owner of the Pleasant Street property in question, briefly spoke on the matter. It was noted Mr. Arms inherited the property after the wetlands district by-law was adopted in Raynham. During discussion, it was noted wetland lines do change and should be checked periodically. Board members agreed the new town planner can work on the solar/wetlands district matter.
General Business: Mr. Fountain moved to waive the reading and approve the minutes of November 1, 2012; second by Mr. Ellis; motion passed by unanimous vote.
Letter dated October 26, 2012 was received from Michael and Rebecca Rogers requesting release of remaining consulting fees for Roger’s Way Extension. After discussion, it was agreed the Certificate of Action will be reviewed to determine if all conditions have been met. The matter was continued to the next meeting.
Letter dated November 14, 2012 was received from Brian Dunn, MBL Land Development & Permitting Corp., requesting that the submittal fee for proposed site plan for 855 Broadway retail plaza be based on the square footage of the proposed SNAP Fit unit rather than the entire existing building. Mr. Gallagher noted he has seen the plan, which changes the entrances at the site. The Board agreed the fee may be based on the individual unit.
The Board agreed that the contract for review services will be taken up with the new town planner.
There was no further business and the meeting adjourned at 7:43 p.m.
Christopher J. Gallagher, Clerk