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Neighbor opposition delays hearing on Back Bay development  

Timothy Loring, a Hill Street resident, expressed concern about the large wind turbine that would be across the street from the development. He said that city ordinances require a considerable setback if residences are to be built within proximity of the turbine. The towering structure is operated by Mark Richey Woodworking and Design, Inc., across Route 1 at 40 Parker St.

Credit:  By Dyke Hendrickson, Staff writer | July 10, 2014 | www.newburyportnews.com ~~

NEWBURYPORT – Sizable opposition from neighbors and confusion surrounding legality issues led the Zoning Board of Appeals to continue a public hearing Tuesday on a proposal to develop 12 residential units on Route 1.

BC Realty Trust, through the local law office of Blatman, Bobrowski & Mead LLC, is proposing to put in two six-unit structures on about 1.5 acres of empty land off Hill Street.

While ZBA members said that the Planning Board will make the larger decision on matters such as site plan review and building requirements, more than a dozen members of the Hill Street neighborhood nevertheless raised objections about the plan.

Several neighbors told the board that abutters hadn’t received adequate information about the proposal, and complained that a legal notice sent to abutters was difficult to understand.

The notice, they told the board, made it seem that there was only a project with six residential units, while there are actually two projects, each with six. Each unit will likely have two bedrooms.

Others said that Route 1 is a highly traveled thoroughfare, and adding a residential development on a curving highway would increase the prospect of automobile accidents.

Ward 3 City Councilor Bob Cronin, who represents the area, said that the ZBA should have delayed the public hearing so that residents could learn more. He also objected to the public hearing starting at 9:45 p.m., which he called an inconvenient hour for many affected residents.

The entire meeting lasted well past 11 p.m.

Numerous speakers complained that the Hill Street-Cherry Street neighborhood is one of primarily single-family homes. A 12-unit multi-family project would not be appropriate, they said. Several of the neighbors said the land was part of a onetime sandpit.

Timothy Loring, a Hill Street resident, expressed concern about the large wind turbine that would be across the street from the development.

He said that city ordinances require a considerable setback if residences are to be built within proximity of the turbine. The towering structure is operated by Mark Richey Woodworking and Design, Inc., across Route 1 at 40 Parker St.

After listening to lengthy remarks by opponents, ZBA members voted to delay the public hearing until Tuesday, Aug. 12.

Source:  By Dyke Hendrickson, Staff writer | July 10, 2014 | www.newburyportnews.com

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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