The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, May 9, 2003


Variance denial triggers 40B threat

The possibility of a comprehensive permit application was held out as a threat last Thursday at the monthly Board of Appeals meeting, after a request for a variance to create two building lots on a 4.84 acre parcel was denied.

Doug Torgersen at 251 Fiske Street petitioned to subdivide his property but is short 15 feet of frontage. His property is bordered by two pork chop lot driveways, and he cannot get relief from either side. Abutters present at the hearing spoke against the request, with concerns about water and drainage.

Torgensen said his intention was to build another house for himself on the other part of his property, and sell his present house. It was not his intention to develop the land. However, he mentioned that a 40B development could be built on this land without the 250 feet of frontage requirement.

"I don't like to be blackmailed," objected board member Hal Sauer. "[The board] is rigorous about maintaining the 250-foot frontage," he continued, and not to do so would be "a diminution of our zoning bylaws."

Board chair Terry Herndon talked about the potential problem of all the pork chop lots in town that were fashioned to reduce the density of homes. He said that neighbors could get together and re-fashion their lots to create other possibilities. With building lots going for half a million dollars, he said, there is lots of incentive to make changes.

New rules and regs

The board voted to approve the new Rules and Regulations of the Board of Appeals, that includes a new comprehensive permit section. Currently all comprehensive permit applications are received by the Town Clerk. The application is stamped and the 30-day clock to initiate a hearing begins. Herndon said that he would request the Town Clerk to notify the BOA of the filing.

2003 The Carlisle Mosquito