The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, June 2, 2006


Shorts from the Board of Health, May 30

Coventry Woods water and septic plans. The Carlisle Board of Health (BOH) met Tuesday night to discuss their concerns with regard to water supply, abutters' well testing and sewage treatment connected with the proposed 41-unit Coventry Woods 40B development on Concord Street. The Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) has asked the BOH to submit comments on the revised 40B plan, proposed by developer Mark O'Hagan, by June 19 so the ZBA can finalize the comprehensive permit process for the affordable housing development.

On Tuesday the BOH prepared a preliminary list of questions to send to O'Hagan, so that the developer can prepare and respond to those questions at the board's next meeting on June 6 at 8 p.m. After that meeting, board members will determine the conditions that they would like to have included in the final permit granted by the ZBA. In addition to discussing their own concerns about the project, BOH members also considered issues raised by several abutters attending the meeting.

The board has only seen a preliminary conceptual plan for the project and needs more information on:

• a fund to be set aside by the developer for possible replacement of wells;

• previous decisions and conditions made by the town regarding other multi-family housing, like Laurel Hollow and Malcolm Meadows;

• whether the proposed septic should be treated as one system or five separate systems;

• updated flow calculations and waiver requests;

• the possibility of using alternative technology to provide environmental safeguards.

The BOH also wants the DEP to require that the abutters' wells be tested at the same time as O'Hagan tests at Coventry Woods. Abutters expressed concerns about water supply, the type of well testing to be used and the proximity of some of the proposed septic locations to their wells. Attending abutters were Michael Epstein of 57 Spencer Brook Lane, Alex and Joan Parker of 77 Russell Street, and Jeff Dinardo of 64 Palmer Way.

Well testing finds coliforms. BOH agent Linda Fantasia reported that six wells in Carlisle tested positive for coliform bacteria, and the well owners have been advised not to drink the water and to hire a professional to evaluate the problem. Fantasia noted that the reports were preliminary, due to the fact that labs are required to notify the town and well owners within 24 hours of a positive coliform test. A full report is expected soon, she said, which she hopes will clarify the preliminary results. Some factors in determining the cause of a postive coliform test include whether the sample was taken from an inside or outside tap, whether the faucet aerator was removed, and whether a filtration system is present.

Ferns DEP meeting report. Board member Michael Holland reported on the meeting he attended on May 30 with Claire Golden of the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), Ferns Market owners Larry Bearfield and Robin Emerson and engineer Joe March. On April 11 the BOH required Bearfield to review his proposed expansion plans with the DEP to see if they could be supported by the existing septic system, which is "undersized" and currently operating under strict conditions set by the state.

Bearfield's plans include a café/lounge with seating for 25 people and an expanded deli and kitchen within the current store space. He also proposes a new building to be located between the existing store and garage, which would contain the new wine and beer business. Because of septic limitations, plans for a bathroom include a waterless composting toilet and sanitizer in place of a sink.

2006 The Carlisle Mosquito