Friday, June 1, 2007
ConsCom permits beaver dam control Okays garage near wetland
Conservation Commission members served as both regulators and consultants at their May 24 meeting. Russell Street resident Gabrielle Dockterman presented a request for an Emergency Certificate for beaver-control action plus guidance on future construction in a tightly contained lot, while Gail Attridge and Robert Thomson were looking for approval of construction within the 100-foot buffer zone of a wetland, plus a reading on possible replacement of fencing that would impinge on a riverfront area.
345 Russell Street
Dockterman explained that recent heavy rains had exacerbated a beaver problem, and water had inched up to within eight feet of their well. She was happy to report that previous professional advice to run a pipe through the beaver abode had indeed reduced the level of flooding in their yard, but they were again becoming nervous and wanted to insert a second pipe in the structure as insurance. The Board of Health had already issued a permit, and ConsCom followed suit.
Certificate in hand, Dockterman told the commission the family was outgrowing its quarters, wanted to remain there in spite of the furry neighbors, and was considering building an addition. Well aware that the construction would inevitably impinge not only on the 100-foot wetland buffer zone, but also on the inner ring of a 200-foot Riverfront Area associated with Spencer Brook, she wanted to know what approach might, or might not, be approvable.
The commissioners made it clear that any addition would need to rest on a sonotube base in order to minimize ground disturbance, and the applicants would have to prove there was no economically feasible alternative to intrusion into the Riverfront Area. Above all, they advised her to make certain she could depend on both the expertise and the honesty of her engineer.
321 Bedford Road
The Thomson/Attridge couple, purchasers of the Bedford Road property formerly owned by Eunice Knight, were seeking approval for construction of an additional garage, 24 by 28 feet, with an upstairs workshop. Showing a set of colored photographs of the pork chop lot, Engineer Marcus Pinney of Bedford stressed that the location had been selected to create a courtyard and preserve their view across the open meadows.
The application also called for installation of an eco-friendly paving material on the existing driveway, with all work located in the wetland buffer zone, but at least 65 feet from that resource area. Pinney's specifications for a rainwater discharge area having been deemed acceptable, the commissioners closed the public hearing and issued a standard order of conditions.
With the major project approved, the engineer asked for the commission's reaction to an additional plan to replace and expand existing fencing, in order to provide a suitable pasture for horses. Again offering photographs of the area involved, he outlined a plan for possible implementation. Finding his approach appropriate and in no way a threat to the Riverfront Area, they authorized him to proceed without an additional filing.
© 2007 The