Friday, May 21, 1999
Bush and Talland requests denied by BOA
At its April 15 meeting, the board of appeals deliberated and denied two requests from residents who were seeking variances in order to proceed with home improvements.
In the first case, Ted Bush of 64 West Street sought a variance regarding a sideline setback, to expand an existing one-car garage into a two-car garage. Unfortunately, the house already is a nonconforming structure based on its front setback. The board, reluctant to expand the nonconformities and believing there are alternative ways to garage two cars without setback infringement, denied the application.
In the second case, Dr. Claudia Talland of 71 Cutters Ridge Road, sought a variance regarding a rear lot-line setback for the construction of a swimming pool. The board felt the applicant had made a reasonable argument regarding land constraints including setbacks, septic location, well, and topography of the land. However, she had not fully explored land swap/purchase alternatives with abutters that would have eliminated the need for a variance.
Since the time of the decision, Talland has investigated a land swap. Although neighbors are amenable to the idea, the site survey will cost $2,200, as quoted by the engineering firm of Stamski and McNary. The work will take six to eight weeks. Furthermore, Talland has since learned that due to the complex lot lines in the development, the state had required title registration of all properties. The change will require amending the state paperwork (an additional fee) and approval (another six to eight weeks). Then, there is no guarantee that the appropriate state officials will approve changes to the title.
Talland might have used this additional information to claim hardship had her application been denied "without prejudice." Her case however, having received a flat denial, cannot be reviewed for two years. Unfortunately, according to board chair Midge Eliasson, the board could not have anticipated the time and expense associated with requesting a land swap at the time of the decision.
© 1999 The Carlisle Mosquito