Friday, May 22, 1998

Developer unveils plans

for 15-lot subdivision on Bisbee

by David Ives

An informal conceptual plan was presented to the planning board on May 12 for the subdivision of land owned by D. Bisbee on Concord Street. The property is located on the right-hand side coming into town from Concord and is immediately opposite the Bisbee conservation land. Joe March of Stamski and McNary, presented a drawing of the 43-acre subdivision on behalf of developer Bruce Wheeler of Habitech.

Plans call for a loop road through the wooded area to support 15 building lots. They will be mainly two-acre lots with the exception of two pork chop lots of four and seven acres. All lots are accessed from the loop road, not Concord Street, although four houses will be located on the main highway. March explained that the land is covered by medium-size pine and hardwood trees. The loop road will require very little cut and fill and the maximum grade should be no more than six to eight percent.

"Are you here to show us how unattractive a development can look?" asked member Michael Epstein. Trails committee co-chair Judy Lane added, "We spent lots of money to buy the Bisbee Land in order to maintain the vista. These houses lined up along Concord Street defeat the whole purpose." Conservationist Ken Harte was equally emphatic when he observed the strong connection between this land and the Estabrook Woods behind it. "Can we provide an access path along the southern border?"

Board members strongly recommended that houses be moved back, away from Concord Street, to preserve the rural character. They also requested that some land be set aside (a minimum of three acres according to subdivision rules and regulations) for open space. March agreed to take everyone's recommendations under consideration and will return with a preliminary plan at a later date.