Brook Street Townhouses Get Planning Board Approval

A local developer received approval for changes to a multifamily housing plan at the April 1 Planning Board meeting.

Engineer Brian Pratt, representing Stage Crossing LLC, appeared before the Planning Board to update them on changes to the plan for townhouses at 30 Brook St. The board had approved the plan in January, with several conditions, and Pratt was asked to come back with changes.

The parcel is PID 23016 and is for nine townhouses.

At the January meeting the Planning Board had asked the developers for the following:

• To move the driveway further from an abutter’s property;

• To provide better screening; and

• To maintain 10 to 15 feet of the natural buffer along the northwest corner of the parking area and add additional landscaping.

Pratt, a staff member with CLD Consulting Engineers, said he had met with abutter Richard Hirtle, who had asked for a taller wall in the back and more vegetation. Pratt said, “We are making the wall taller in back and also adding a dense row of American arborvitae, which can grow to 8 feet tall.” The arborvitae will screen the fence and make it look like a natural buffer, according to Pratt.

Pratt said another abutter had asked for a natural buffer and additional landscaping and said the developer would comply.

In the public hearing, abutter Joe O’Donnell asked about how construction would affect his water lines and who would be responsible for damage. Town Engineer Mark L’Heureux said the developer would be responsible, and also responsible for any “shaking” to O’Donnell’s house.

Pratt said the arrangement will include a “pre-construction inspection” of neighboring properties to identify any potential issues.

The board voted 7-1 to accept the changes, with Chairman David Granese the dissenting vote. “I did not vote for it the last time,” he said. Though the developers had agreed to drop the proposal from 10 to nine units, Granese said in the January hearing that he thinks the use is too intense for the lot.