Friday, June 20, 2003
Hart Farm Estates nears completion
At their meeting on June 9, the Planning Board reviewed the progress toward completion of the Hart Farm Estates subdivision off Curve Street. The three-year approval expires on June 27, and engineer William Maher of Judith Nitsch Engineering, Inc. visited the site recently to determine what outstanding issues remain before the Planning Board can issue a Certificate of Completion. Developer Michael Kenney, who was also present, has sold all of the lots and, thus far, has not sought an extension of the subdivision approval.
Maher observed that the area in the vicinity of the drop inlet in the grass area at the intersection of Hart Farm Road and Daniel's Lane appears to be washing out, thanks to our miserably wet spring weather. Joe March of Stamsky and McNary accompanied Maher and Kenney and indicated that riprap (rocks placed to break the flow of water and prevent erosion) would be installed in the vicinity of the opening of the drop inlet and the area would be seeded. Both Kenney and March admitted that the rear half of the cul-de-sac at Daniel's Lane is approximately six inches below finished grade. Kenney plans to remove the pavement in the rear half of the cul-de-sac and bring it up to grade with additional gravel and two courses of bituminous concrete.
At the request of Planning Administrator George Mansfield, Maher checked out a problem involving access to the trail easement in the vicinity of Lots 2 and 3 on Daniel's Lane. The garage for Lot 2 was reoriented from the rear to the side of the house and the driveway raised approximately four to five feet above what was shown on the plan. This has created a low point in the area of access to the trail easement and fill used in raising the driveway is washing out into the trail easement.
Neither the "Public Parking" sign at the gravel parking area at the Hart Farm Road cul-de-sac nor the "Public Access Easement" sign at the intersection of Curve Street and Hart Farm Road has been installed. Maher also observed that riprap at the culverts on Lot 1 and Lot 6 has not been installed. Access to the trail easement from the gravel parking area at the end of Hart Farm Road concerned him because of the steep slope. Kenney indicated that he would extend the slope from the gravel parking area approximately 10·15 feet to provide a more gradual slope.
March noticed that the two-inch maple trees for detention basins 1 and 2 are situated on the crests of the berm rather than on the inside toe of the slope as recommended by the supplier of the trees. Kenney resisted moving them to the preferred location because it would void the warranty. Besides, the trees appear to be thriving at their current location and don't appear to have any impact on the detention basins.
None of these problems is considered major and Kenney agreed to correct them as needed. However, he must make all these changes, and allow time for Maher to revisit the site to confirm their completion before the next Planning Board meeting in order to meet the June 27 deadline. Kenney thinks he can pull it off and therefore has not requested an extension of the subdivision permit, but members of the board are skeptical and will follow the progress with heightened interest. They plan to invite the homeowners' association to the next meeting if Kenney asks for a Certificate of Completion.
Great Brook Estates driveway
Another spring casualty, this time a washout at Great Brook Estates, caught the eye of both the Planning Board and Conservation Commission. Conservation Administrator Sylvia Willard is drafting a memo about the washout and has some graphic pictures to back it up. The problem was identified as an improperly constructed swale instead of the required infiltration trench, but Dan Holzman took exception to this simplification. "The infiltration trench won't work," he declared. "It fills in with silt and debris and turns itself into a swale." Since it's a common driveway, the owner must pay for cleanup and maintenance, which is difficult to enforce. The board decided to ask Great Brook Estates engineer Gary Shepard of Ross Associates to re-evaluate the design.
Appointments and liaisons
Members welcomed newly-elected Rich Colman. They then proceeded to choose Louise Hara as their chair for the coming year, with Phyllis Zinicola to serve as vice-chair. Tom Lane remains as treasurer and Colman was immediately put to work as clerk. Liaisons to other boards and committees were parceled out next, with some of the more notable appointments being Zinicola - Community Preservation Committee, Hara · Selectmen, Dan Holzman · Board of Health, Lane and Dave Freedman - MAGIC, and Colman · Finance Committee.
© 2003 The