The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, December 15, 2006

News

ZBA okays proposed gift shop near town center, denies permit to landscaping firm

The Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) held two controversial hearings at their meeting on December 7.

45 Bedford Road

Francene Amari-Faulkner and Cynthia Nunan applied for a special permit to open and operate a handicraft and gift shop at 45 Bedford Road. It would be located in an apartment that is part of the house. According to Amari-Faulkner, the craft store would be based on a holiday theme, additionally offering children's toys and items such as fancy napkins and children's party bags. The business would be primarily online, though the center of town location could benefit local residents. Nunan added that they would also feature Carlisle artisans who wanted to consign their work. They ultimately want the store to have a community feel. Reached later, Amari-Faulkner explained that the project is still in the concept phase, and any physical shop will depend on the results of their market research and online sales.

Those abutters present stated their concerns about hours of operation, traffic and external lighting. Jonathan White of 60 Bedford Road said, "I've lived in Carlisle center for most of my life. [I'm concerned] that [the business] is going to turn into 'Francene's Mini-Mart and Barn.' I completely oppose it." The ZBA, however, unanimously granted the permit for one year with the following conditions: hours of operation are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m, Tuesday through Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Lighting and signage must be in compliance with Historical Society bylaws and on-street parking is not allowed.

570 West Street

Kevin Stacey applied for a special permit to continue operating his landscaping business at 570 West Street. Stacey's permit had expired in February; he admitted to violating the permit conditions concerning hours of operation. The abutter, Grand Challenger, whose thruway he uses to exit his property, was not in favor of the ZBA renewing his permit. Challenger claimed to have initially supported the special permit, but was no longer tolerant of the landscaping and earth-moving equipment going back and forth on the easement across his property.

Other abutters present were in favor of the ZBA renewing Stacey's permit, but the board ultimately denied his request without prejudice, which allows him to reapply without delay. Chair Ed Rolfe, being the sole member to vote in favor of the special permit request, said, "The only issue that weighed with me was the issue of the trucks. I'm having a hard time finding that it is of a level to cause a nuisance."

ZBA member Steve Hinton disagreed along with board members Cindy Nock, Shann Kerner and Emmanuel Crespo, stating, "The applicant has not lived up to the permit that was granted to him, and frankly I'm disturbed by it."


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