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Planning Board Minutes 04/20/2010

SOUTH BERWICK PLANNING BOARD
REGULAR MEETING MINUTES
April 20, 2010

ROLL CALL
Present: John Stirling, Mimi Demers, Bill Straub, Joel Moulton and Jim Fisk, Town Planner.

Not Present: Cheryl Dionne and Richard Clough.

Susie Scott, Assistant to the Town Planner, was taking minutes.

CALL TO ORDER
Vice Chairman Stirling called the Planning Board meeting to order at 7:01 PM.

Joel Moulton will be a voting member due to the absent members.

MINUTES APPROVAL
April 6, 2010 – Planning Board Regular Meeting: Motion by Mrs. Demers, second by Mr. Moulton to approve meeting minutes, passed unanimously.

PUBLIC AUDIENCE
The following members of the public audience reserved time to speak to the items noted:
• Jack Kareckas, Great Works Land Trust and 15 Parent St. – MSP#07-05 and MSP#09-01.
• David Vachon, Flynn Lane S. – MSP#09-02.

CORRESPONDENCE

- none.

OLD BUSINESS
1. MSP#09-02; Our Lady of Angels Parish (Greater Portland Diocese): Continued.
Criteria Standards for approval.

The Planning Board reviewed the revised Findings of Fact.

Motion by Mr. Straub, second by Mrs. Demers to accept the Findings of Fact for MSP#09-02 as previously amended, passed unanimously.

2. MSP#09-03; Roxanne Roberge, Rockin’ Rooster (Map 28, Lot 171): Amendment to Existing Site Plan Permit.

Mr. Fisk provided the Board the provisions that provide for an amendment to a site plan under Section 140-77B, Applicability. No expansion proposed. If the Board chose, they could address the need to add Amendment provisions to further define minor revisions to any approved site plan permits in their work plan. Mr. Fisk confirmed 1 handicap parking spot required per 25 spaces.

Mrs. Scott gave a brief overview of her meetings with the applicant, and noted the main issue was the additional parking requirement which had already been met. “Eat-in” seating was allowed per the Ordinance definition of “Restaurant, Take-Out”.

Motion by Mr. Straub, second by Mr. Moulton to approve the amendment to the existing site plan permit MSP#09-03, passed unanimously.

Vice Chairman Stirling identified the 30-day appeal period from this date of approval.

3. MSP#07-05; HL Patten Construction, Howard L. Patten (Map 1, Lot 33 – Route 236): Permit Extension Request.

Mr. Fisk and the applicant, Howard Patten provided the Board a brief history of the project for which a permit renewal was now being requested:

2007 - 2010
• Applicant first approached the Board in 2007 with a site plan application.
• Received final approval in March, 2008.
• Received a clearing permit.
• Submitted DEP an application for a Stormwater permit.
• Project Engineer, Tom Harmon, discovered a Beginning with Habitat map identifying this area as a black racer snake habitat, and presented the findings to the State and Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.
• Applicant chose to halt work although the DEP informed him that the State would not stop development of his property.
• Applicant agreed to install snake fencing and a snake tunnel in the event a snake habitat existed.
• On-going discussions lasting a year and a half occurred between Applicant, Planner, DEP and IF&W regarding snake habitat, and stream and stormwater management.
• Received approved Stormwater Management permit.
• Expiration of Site Plan permit MSP#07-05 in March, 2010.
• Currently, requesting a site plan permit renewal as no other changes are proposed from original approval.

Mr. Fisk responded to Mrs. Demers noting there was nothing new for the Board to re-review a previously approved application as new but noted it was up to the wishes of the Board on how to address a renewal. Mr. Fisk stated that in other towns, if there had been no change or a substantial permit problem, there was little reason to not renew the permit. The applicant, Howard Patten, worked in good faith with the DEP and IF&W over the past two years.

Howard Patten, applicant, presented the original site plan with no proposed changes. He noted no erosion in/around driveway had occurred in consideration of the large amount of rain received. All erosion control and best management practices are in place, and both the DEP and IF&W have walked this site a few times. There has been no washout onto Route 236. He is requesting a permit renewal, and noted he has a Small Business Administration (SBA) loan set to expire shortly.

Jack Kareckas, speaking both as President of Great Works Regional Land Trust and as a South Berwick resident, discussed his concerns regarding proposed access over Punkin Town Road, and the effects of storms in the past few years. This watershed in this area has been hammered by off-the-charts amounts of precipitation. He affirmed the need to be careful with impervious surfaces in areas that were historically watersheds. He noted that in recent storms, various culverts were washed out including those on Oldfields and Dover Eliot roads. He requested the Board assure that post-construction runoff mimics that of pre-construction.

Mr. Patten noted that all watershed runoff is diverted into detention areas.

Nick Tsakiris, Agamenticus Road, stated that these types of projects have to undergo a DEP stormwater permitting process that address these same issues and concerns, and an approved DEP permit should assist the Board in their decision making process.

Mr. Patten stated he worked with Judy Camuso, Assistant Regional Wildlife Biologist with the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife to address snake tunneling and fencing. He does not intend to clear land located 100 feet back from the property line as a buffer to address any concern of visibility from Route 236.

Mr. Fisk confirmed that the Board could renew the permit at this meeting because the same Findings of Fact apply as those previously approved. He stated that the Beginning with Habitat maps are non-regulatory, and noted the snake habitat is specific to the CMP corridor, not on Mr. Patten’s property. Habitat maps are used in reviewing all site plan applications.

Motion by Mrs. Demers, second by Mr. Moulton, to extend site plan permit MSP#07-05 for Howard L. Patten, for two (2) years with the condition the approved DEP Stormwater permit be submitted for Planning Board review, passed unanimously.

4. MSP#09-01; Howarth Builders, Inc.: Punkin Town Place – Office/Retail/Commercial/Recreation Facility – Continued. (Map 1, Lot 34 & Map 2, Lot 9-1 – Route 236 @ Punkin Town Road).

Lou Chamberlain, Attar engineer, gave a brief presentation of this project. He is currently working with both the property owner, Tom Howarth and site designer, Nick Tsakiris, in putting together a formal site plan application. They will be submitting the DEP a stormwater management application for permitting. The main change to their plan has been with the road as they are working with the DEP and IF&W to address the black racer snake habitat. They moved the entrance up onto Punkin Town Road.

Mr. Fisk stated this was an excellent application for a mixed-use facility which is allowed within the industrial zone. He met with Mr. Tsakiris regarding the building design. The Public Works Director, Terry Oliver will be meeting with Mr. Chamberlain to discuss the stormwater management plan. The applicant needs to address the issue of the proposed project situated on two separate lots as they cannot receive approval until such time as the properties are combined. The Sewer District has given conditional approval based upon sewer hookup. He discussed a phased site plan amendment with the applicant regarding the third floor. Currently, the lighting meets the standards including shielding, off-site spread, visible fixtures, shielded lighting and recessed lighting. Mr. Fisk was confident the applicant thoroughly researched the lighting issue. The applicant is the property owner which addresses financial capacity. The Board will need to address sign location. Mr. Fisk concluded that this mixed-use facility would be a welcome addition to the industrial zone and an enhancement to Route 236, and has greatly been improved upon since the first concept sketch was presented. Both the Conservation Commission and Great Works Regional Land Trust have concerns with the stream crossing program, and will be able to have those concerns addressed.

Mr. Chamberlain explained that they have identified the stream crossing as needed by a “Permit by Rule” which will be submitted with the stormwater application.

Mr. Straub questioned why Shoreland Zoning does not apply to the Quamphegan Brook as this is the main thread of drainage. Prior to continuing site plan review, he requested an expert from IF&W address the technical aspect of the threshold of this natural resource.

Mr. Chamberlain confirmed that early on in the process he had checked with the Code Enforcement Officer who confirmed the setbacks outside of the Shoreland zone, and that any runoff issue would be identified as part of the DEP stormwater application.

Mr. Fisk will ask the DEP who would best be the one to define that brook.

Mr. Straub stated the applicant’s stormwater plan appears to be competent and solid but would like comparables for the same data. He is concerned about the steepness of the brook with such a critical flow in this high energy environment. He questioned the crossing, and recommended an independent stormwater review. He would like the Board to conduct a site walk visit.

Mr. Moulton noted the snow dump areas, and concern of runoff. He agreed with Mr. Straub in recommending the Board seek an independent stormwater review. He would like further information about how Shoreland Zoning would impact this property.

Mr. Chamberlain stated he would be agreeable to landscaping although Mr. Howarth would like site visibility. He agreed that there would be no more than 150 trips during peak hours, therefore not requiring a DOT entrance permit. He is currently in discussion with the traffic engineer if a traffic movement permit would be needed with dance studio trips included. He believes Punkin Town Road is owned by the property owners, and that everyone along the road is allowed to use it. It is up to Mr. Howarth on whether he plans to pave the road.

Punkin Town Road was discussed as being a private road.

Mr. Straub discussed concern of heavy traffic during peak hours of the day, and runoff from this critical site.

Pat Robinson, Conservation Commission, stated her concerns were previously addressed by Mr. Kareckas. She noted the high water level of the Quamphegan Brook. Her main concern is water, and the concern of more impervious surfaces that follow increased development.

Next Step:
• Clarification of the Quamphegan Brook/Stream in relation to Shoreland Zoning.
• Report on the meeting between Terry Oliver, PWD and the applicant.
• Possible future scheduling of a site walk once all Board members are present.
- Site Walk visit to include Pat Robinson, Conservation Commission.
• Public Hearing very likely.
• Peer review of Plan.

NEW BUSINESS
- none.

OTHER
- none.

MEMBER COMMENTS
Mr. Stirling: Stated he was upset that no one informed the Planning Board of eliminating the Planner position.

Mr. Moulton: Stated he too felt that eliminating the Planner’s position was not necessarily a good way to go, and there were other avenues and other work force areas which could have been considered and reviewed. He finds Jim to be very helpful, and wished him well.

Dates & Times for Upcoming Meetings:
May 4, 2010 - 7:00 PM Planning Board Regular Meeting
May 18, 2010 - 7:00 PM Planning Board Regular Meeting

Motion by Mrs. Demers, second by Mr. Moulton to adjourn the regular meeting. The meeting was adjourned without objection at 8:17 PM.

ATTESTED: Susie Scott
Susie Scott, Assistant to the Director of Planning & Economic Development