The Raynham Planning Board held a regularly scheduled meeting on Thursday, August 15, 2013, at Raynham Veterans’ Memorial Town Hall. Chairman Andrade opened the meeting at 6:06 p.m.
Board members present: Daniel Andrade, Burke Fountain, Christopher Gallagher, Russell Driscoll
Board members not present: Henry Ellis
Staff present: Maureen McKenney, Administrative Assistant
6:06 p.m. – Lincoln Woods: Matt Kashmanian, Maple Street, appeared before the Board to discuss Lincoln Woods subdivision. Earlier in the week Mr. Kashmanian submitted to the Town a “complaint and grievance” petition signed by residents about several issues of concern in Lincoln Woods.
Mr. Kashmanian asked if the Board had any feedback on the petition. Mr. Andrade noted that many subdivisions have similar concerns before a project is completed. He asked if there was any information that the developer was unwilling to work with the neighborhood.
Mr. Kashmanian submitted photos showing the entrance to Lincoln Woods, stating the area is overgrown and never maintained. He explained there is a giant backhoe kept at different locations on site along with an old dump truck that has been there since 2005, which are hazard concerns. There is a large dirt hill on Maple Street that is full of rocks and weeds, which is a safety concern for the children of the neighborhood, and there is debris left on site and it is an eyesore.
Mr. Andrade stated he drove through the subdivision recently and found the individual house properties were well kept although it does look like a subdivision still under construction. He explained that the road is not yet accepted by the Town and is owned by the developer until it is accepted. Mr. Andrade noted that some of the work cannot be done until it is time for road acceptance but the Board can ask the developer to take care of some issues. He noted a bond is being held for the subdivision, and all work will have to be completed before the road is accepted. It was noted the highway surveyor asked that the two cul-de-sacs in the subdivision not be finished until all houses lots were built out.
Mr. Kashmanian asked Mr. Andrade if he felt the subdivision is safe. Mr. Andrade said he did but that the 10 years to complete was another issue. He noted the property is private and the developer can use his own property. It was noted that the state permit extension act has extended the time to complete the subdivision beyond the original two-year period.
Mr. Gallagher explained the developer will be required to complete the road to the Town’s standards and the Board’s satisfaction before the surety bond will be released.
Mr. Andrade informed the residents that Mr. Hamilton, the developer, will be before the Board later in tonight’s meeting to request lot releases and they will discuss the matter with him, and the residents may stay for that discussion. Mr. Andrade noted items left on private property is a personal problem but if items left at the subdivision serve no purpose, they could be removed.
David Ogilvie, Crimson Street, asked if the surety bond will cover the costs of completing the subdivision. Mr. Andrade noted the Board can consider another cost estimate for the project.
Mike Lynn, Maple Street, discussed that 10 of the 12 lots now have rough patch driveways with no finish coat and he asked the reason for this. The Board noted the driveways were private property. Mr. Lynn asked the Board to consider using leverage and to help the residents. Mr. Andrade said he was okay with asking the developer to finish drainage or road work, and the Board could ask for an inspection.
Mark Thomas, Maple Street, asked when the subdivision should be completed. Mr. Andrade explained the Board extends the time if the project is in healthy condition. He said the Board will discuss it. Mr. Thomas said he was concerned with unevenness between sidewalks and streets and properties. Mr. Thomas mentioned fire hydrants not being visible. Mr. Andrade told him to inform the fire department.
Mr. Andrade stated the Board heard the residents loud and clear. Mr. Kashmanian stated he hoped the Board could help with the hill, which is a “travesty.” Mr. Andrade advised the residents to check with the Board in the future to regarding the agenda, and he advised they can stay when Mr. Hamilton comes in later.
*Federal Express: Jonathan Novak, P.E., Coneco Engineers, Bridgewater, MA, appeared before the Board for the Federal Express, Paramount Drive, abbreviated site plan. Mr. Novak explained the proposed plan, noting there are 245 parking spots on site, which complies with by-laws, the fencing is now gone, and there are no changes proposed for the entrances.
Copy of letter dated August 2, 2013 from Mr. Novak to Highway Superintendent Stolte, in response to Mr. Stolte’s letter dated July 29, 2013 letter, was received and discussed. It was noted the parking is not shown on the plan. The Board requested the parking be on the plan.
Mr. Gallagher moved to approve the abbreviated site plan titled “FedEx PYMA Facility Vehicle Maintenance Expansion 310 Paramount Drive Raynham, Massachusetts 02767,” dated August 1, 2013 with the condition that parking requirements and parking provided be added to the plan; second by Mr. Fountain; motion passed by unanimous vote (4).
Letter dated July 15, 2013 from Shane Oates, Coneco Engineers, requesting a waiver of the submittal fee, was discussed. Mr. Andrade moved to reduce the filing fee to $2,500; second by Mr. Gallagher; motion passed by unanimous vote.
*Lot 10 Forge River Park site plan public hearing was reconvened. Todd Pilling, P.E., and applicant Robert Turner were present.
Mr. Andrade noted that Town Counsel is researching legal issues at the Board’s request but it is Town Counsel’s opinion at this point that Forge River Park is not an accepted road. Mr. Andrade stated the Board will proceed with the site plan at this point. He discussed that he thought improving the road frontage for Lot 10 at the 1988 standards may be a good compromise for the site plan. Mr. Turner noted there was a judgment issued many years ago regarding the road and based on the judgment the road should be completed with the money the Town is holding in an escrow account. Mr. Andrade noted that is one of the legal issues the Board asked Town Counsel about. It was noted the cost to complete the road may exceed the amount of money being held in the account.
Mr. Turner said he was okay with extending the road up to his access driveway as shown on the site plan but he will not extend the pavement near the wetlands. He said he would be okay with paving the road to a point to provide the highway department enough room to snowplow. Mr. Andrade asked that the applicant revise the plan to show a sufficient cul de sac or turnaround that the Town can access for plowing. Mr. Gallagher suggested a hammerhead turnaround may work.
Mr. Fountain noted he felt the applicant has a right to build per the subdivision plan.
Mr. Gallagher said he spoke to the Conservation Commission agent and he did not have issue with the drainage.
The public hearing was continued to September 5, 2013, 6:15 p. m..
7:10 p.m. – Metro West Volkswagen site plan: Brian Dunn, MBL Land Development & Permitting Corp., South Easton, MA, appeared before the Board, along with Dominic Grieco of Metro Motors, to request a minor modification to the Metro West Volkswagen site plan. Mr. Dunn explained there are changes to the landscaping plan by eliminating some of the low bushes from the plan. After discussion of the plan, it was agreed to keep the large trees and to keep some low bushes along the Church Street section.
After discussion, the Board agreed they had no problem with the change. They requested a revised plan be submitted for the Board to vote on. They agreed the work can be started now.
7:18 p.m. – Lincoln Wood subdivision: Developer Todd Hamilton was present to request the release of Lots 6, 7 and 8 on Crimson Street. Mr. Andrade informed Mr. Hamilton that several homeowners from Lincoln Woods were present earlier in the meeting. (Mr. Hamilton was provided with a copy of the petition the Board received.)
Mr. Hamilton discussed the work done and the amount of bond being held. Mr. Andrade informed Mr. Hamilton that he had two issues of concern: the amount of the bond being held and the time being taken to complete such as the landscaping behind the curbing. It was noted the road was started in 2003.
The grass strips along the sidewalks were discussed. Mr. Hamilton explained there are wetlands along the entrance to the subdivision so he cannot landscape that area. He explained he wants to finish the remaining work in “one shot” but he has been going back and forth between the building department and planning board to get issues resolved and he has been frustrated. During discussion, it was noted there are five lots left to be built out, and three of the lots are on the private addressStreetCrimson Street extension road.
Mr. Andrade stated the residents are as frustrated with the developer as the developer is with the Town. He noted the residents are asking for loam and seed on the grass strips at the sidewalks. He noted 85% – 90% of the development looks great but a last touch is needed. Mr. Hamilton stated he will sweep and clean at the end of the project. Mr. Andrade stated that the permit issues now have no bearing on what is left undone. He said if the site is inspected and found that things need to be done, they will let Mr. Hamilton know.
Mr. Andrade asked how much longer the vehicles will be on site. Mr. Hamilton stated he would be gone if the building permits were issued. He stated he could be out this year or it could be next year. He noted the houses being built on Lots 15 & 16 will be spec houses. He noted that not all of the homeowners at Lincoln Woods supported the petition. Mr. Andrade said he informed the homeowners tonight that the subdivision is still a construction site.
Mike Lynn, Maple Street, spoke and said he understands Mr. Hamilton’s frustrations and the economy but that ten years is a long time to be still finishing the work. He noted there is not much left to do. Mr. Andrade stated if he were the developer, he would finish the project and ask for road acceptance. He stated it makes sense to finish and complete the work
Mr. Thomas referenced the discussion the Board had earlier about the aesthetics at a commercial site, noting that aesthetics are important to the homeowners. Mr. Fountain explained that the Board can require more from the commercial property owners than from private property owners.
Mr. Hamilton commented that he pays taxes on the unbuilt properties, there is a bond in place, and the roads are plowed in the winter. He noted he has recently lost four buyers because of issues arising during the permit process.
Brian Zechello, Maple Street, noted there are trucks just sitting in the development that do not touch snow and he asked that they be removed. Mr. Hamilton said the trucks are used as back up and may be needed to keep the roads plowed. Mr. Andrade noted the trucks are private property.
After discussion, Mr. Andrade moved to grant the Form J releases for Lots 6, 7 and 8 on Crimson Street; second by Mr. Fountain; passed on unanimous vote (4-0). The Form J was signed.
Mr. Andrade stated the subdivision looks nice and is a credit to those living there so he sees the homeowners’ frustrations. Mr. Hamilton said he cannot dress up the entrance because of the wetlands. Mr. Andrade stated he can take the weeds from the area that is not in the wetlands. He noted that when the road acceptance is requested, the engineer will inspect for the Board.
7:53 p.m. – Performance Plus dog training center: Letter dated August 15, 2013 was received from Attorney William D. Rounds, Taunton, MA, regarding a temporary occupancy permit for Performance Plus Dog Training, Inc. Attorney Rounds appeared before the Board and explained that the project is almost completed and the owner wants to open September 3rd. Mr. Andrade advised that the Board does not meet again until September 5th so it is unlikely the Board can give approval for an occupancy permit before that date.
It was noted that the Certificate of Action for the plan requires a temporary occupancy permit be issued, and after 90 days of operating, the Board will determine whether or not a permanent occupancy permit can be issued at that time. After discussion, the Board agreed that a site inspection and report will be requested and the Board will vote on the matter at the September 5th meeting. Mr. Andrade advised Attorney Rounds that there should not be too many outstanding site issues. Attorney Rounds said his client will post a bond if necessary.
7:55 p.m. – General Business:
- Invoices were signed (Nitsch Engineering invoices totaling $226; Herald News $281.52))
- Mr. Fountain moved to waive the reading and approve the minutes of August 1, 2013, as submitted; second by Mr. Gallagher; motion passed by unanimous vote (4-0).
- Bond Reduction Cost Estimate, dated August 14, 2013, for Campbell Court, was received from Beals & Thomas, Inc., which set the bond estimate at $102,813. Mr. Fountain moved to reduce the bond to $102,813 and release funds over that amount; second by Mr. Gallagher; motion passed by unanimous vote (4-0).
- The surety bond for construction of the Rte. 138 Wal Mart store was discussed. Mr. Andrade noted the Board had a concern as to whether or not there is an expiration date on the bond. A Change Rider, dated August 14, 2013, was received from Fidelity and Deposit Company of placeStateMaryland, stating there is no expiration date on the bond. Mr. Andrade moved to accept the Change Rider; second by Mr. Gallagher; motion passed by unanimous vote (4-0)
There was no further business and the meeting adjourned at 8:10 p.m.
Raynham Planning Board
Christopher J. Gallagher, Clerk
(Amended minutes: * Federal Express and *Lot 10 Forge River Park site plan sections added)