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Zoning Board of Appeals Minutes 11/21/2013
Zoning Board of Appeals
Middleton, MA
MINUTES OF THE MEETING
November 21, 2013

The Middleton Zoning Board of Appeals met at a regularly scheduled meeting on November 21, 2013 at the Fuller Meadow School,
143 South Main Street, Middleton, Massachusetts at 7:00 PM.
The following board members were in attendance:
Chairperson, Barbara Piselli, Clerk, Anne Cote, and members James Fox, Craig Hartwell, Richard
Nazzaro and Anne LeBlanc-Snyder.
Others present:
Richard Bienvenue, Building Commissioner, Katrina O’Leary, Planning Coordinator and Karen
Matsubara, Recording Secretary
Chairperson Barbara Piselli called the meeting to order at 7:09 p.m.

15 Spring Road Map 18, Lot 97-Thomas J. Cassidy, Sr.-Variance from the side-yard setback
requirement to construct an attached two-car garage within the footprint of the existing retaining
wall. Application #966
Chairperson Piselli stated that the hearing had been continued from the last meeting and the members
had conducted a site walk this past Sunday, November 17, 2013. The voting members will be the four
regular Board members and alternate member Richard Nazzaro, who also participated in the site walk.
Homeowner, Maureen Palla expressed her gratitude to the Board for taking the time to view the site.
Petitioner, Thomas Cassidy explained that because of the topography the best solution for the property
owners to expand their storage area was the addition of the garage within the retaining wall as proposed.
Craig Hartwell felt the site walk was very informative, as you cannot grasp the unique nature of the site
through the drawings and photos presented. The alternative to put the garage on the other side of the
home is not feasible, in addition to the grade being nearly1:1 on rough terrain, the road does not
continue to the other side of the home. There is already a retaining wall in the footprint of the proposed
garage and the addition of the roof will only increase the elevation by four to five feet.
Anne Cote confirmed that the retaining wall will be used as the foundation of the garage.
Barbara Piselli commented that zoning relief in terms of variances is something that is given very
sparingly; the courts have been clear that a personal financial hardship is not something that can be
considered. Ms. Piselli was having a problem with the hardship in response to Craig’s comments.
Mr. Hartwell further explained that he did not intend to say that there was a financial hardship; the
topography is unique, with the soil conditions which appear to be very rocky, based on all the stone and
retention work on site and the enormous grade to get to the home. There is 122’ on the other side of the
home but the roadway is not built out and the grade is approximately 1:1.

Ms. Piselli felt there were many pieces of property in the district that were similarly situated.
James Fox commented that in his opinion the home was one of the nicer homes in the area, therefore
adding credence to putting the proposed garage addition onto the home. Mr. Fox felt that putting the
garage on the other side would be not only economically unsound but foolish.
In response to a question on the roofline, Mr. Cassidy explained that the pitch was approximately 2%
but other options are available, the idea was to keep the roofline at a small pitch to maintain a low
profile.
Ms. Palla also confirmed that there were no plans to add to the living space with a second story to the
garage; they were only looking to add storage space.
Mr. Nazzaro stated that his questions had been answered with the site walk.
Ms. Piselli called for any more discussion, hearing none she called for a motion.

MOTION: Made by Craig Hartwell that the Board approve the variance to the side yard setback
requirement on the right side of the house to be reduced from 30’ to 9.9’ due to the unique
character of the property, specifically the very steep grade at the front of the house and
abundance of ledge at the rear and side of the house that would otherwise be useful. The
conditions are unique to this property and are not affecting the district as a whole and the
variance can be granted without a detriment to the public good. Motion seconded by James Fox.
VOTE: 4-1 in favor, motion carried. Barbara Piselli voted against.

Motion: Made by Anne Cote to condition the variance to require that the roof be no less than a
2% slope. In addition, the variance does not apply to anything beyond a single-story structure.

Motion seconded by Craig Hartwell.
VOTE: 4-1 in favor, motion carried. Barbara Piselli voted against.
235 South Main Street, Map 33, Lot 31B-Harold Tubman-Determination of Site Plan
Modification-Minor façade change to previously approved retail strip building
Attorney Nancy McCann presented a plan on behalf of applicant, Harold Tubman. Mr. Tubman wishes
to locate his business, Circle Furniture from the current location in Danvers to the building to be newly
constructed next to Walgreens which is located at 235 So. Main Street. The building was originally
approved for retail sales and a bank with drive-thru. The only change being requested of the originally
approved site plan is to “mirror” the elevation of the building, essentially switching the “end caps” of the
building. Circle Furniture will take a majority of the space at one end the building and a bank with
drive-thru will be located at the other end, nearest the River Street Side. Deliveries to the store will be
done with a small box truck one to two times per week. The height of the end caps are 32.2’ and 34.1’,
the Circle furniture end will be the lower end, closest to Walgreens.
Chairperson Piselli commented that the issue before the Board is to make a determination on whether
the proposed changes constitute a minor modification, whereby the requirement for a public hearing
would be waived.

Ms. Cote confirmed that the parking and driveways would remain unchanged.
Mr. Hartwell felt that the abutting property could have an issue with the change and because there is no
notification, they are not available to voice their opinion.
Attorney McCann clarified the locations of the wall signage and stated that there is no signage facing the
abutting property that Mr. Hartwell was concerned about.

MOTION: Made by Anne Cote that the Board make a finding that the requested modification to
the previously approved site plan is minor in nature and waives the requirement of a public
hearing. Motion seconded by Anne LeBlanc-Snyder. Vote 4-1 in favor, motion carried. Craig
Hartwell voted against.

64 East Street, Map 14, Lots 9 & 9A-Jon Maidment, Catherine Maidment individually and co-
Trustee of and Eleanor L. Champlain co-Trustee of Elle M. Dunn Revocable Trust-Special Permit
pursuant Section 6.3.6 o authorize the installation and use of a common driveway to access two (2)
lots located within a new residential subdivision. Application #961
Chairperson Piselli stated that the hearing for the petition was opened August 22, 2013 and continued
through today, a site walk was conducted on September 15, 2013. Ms. Piselli named Mr. Nazzaro the
fifth voting member for the petition and confirmed that he had attended the site walk.
Clerk Anne Cote read correspondence from the following: DPW Superintendent dated 10/24/13,
Planning Board 11/15/13 & Fire Department 11/21/13 (letters on file.)
Chairperson Piselli explained that this is the first petition presented under the new bylaw to allow
common driveways and asked Attorney Mann to explain the requirements and how the petition meets
the requirements
Attorney Jill Mann reviewed the requirements which included: 1. Center line intersection with the street
center line shall not be less than 45 degrees to provide for safe egress & ingress-provided and noted on
plan. 2. A minimum of 12’ width-14’ is provided for the entire length of the driveway. 3. A surface of a
minimum of 4” graded gravel over a sufficient base, graded & compacted to drain from the crownprovided
4” base plus bituminous top. 4. Driveway shall be located entirely within the boundaries of the
lots being served by the driveway-common driveway is located as required. 5. Proposed documents
shall be submitted to the Planning Board demonstrating that, through easements, restrictive covenants,
or other appropriate legal devices, the maintenance, repair, snow removal, and liability for the common
driveway shall remain perpetually the responsibility of the private parties, or their successors-in-interest-
A draft agreement was provided to the Board. Attorney Mann added that Fire Chief Twiss asked for an
amendment to the agreement to require that the driveways are kept clear of branches. The beginning of
the drive and the split of the drive will have signage to indicate which homes are serviced.

MOTION: Made by Anne Cote that the Board make a finding that the common driveway satisfies
all the conditions of Section 6.3 generally and Section 6.3.6, specifically that the centerline
intersection with the street center line is not less than 45 degrees, the driveway will be a minimum
of 12 feet in width and will have a sufficient graded gravel base. The driveway will be located
within the boundaries of the lots served. There is sufficient documentation submitted to the
Planning Board demonstrating that through easements, restrictive covenants, or other
appropriate legal devices the maintenance, repair, snow removal, and liability for the common
driveway shall remain perpetually the responsibility of the private parties, or their successors-ininterest.
All public safety concerns have been or will be addressed in the construction and
maintenance of the driveway, said concerns as detailed in correspondence submitted by the Chief
of Police and Fire Chief. Motion seconded by Richard Nazzaro. Vote 4-1 in favor, motion
carried. Craig Hartwell voted against.

MOTION: Made by Anne Cote that based on the findings, the Board grant the Special Permit for
the construction and use of a common driveway to service two lots pursuant to the Site Plan.
Motion seconded by Richard Nazzaro. Vote 4-1 in favor, motion carried. Craig Hartwell voted
against.

School Street, Map 11, Lot 23-Philip Colosi & Joanne Colosi, Trustees of PC Development Realty
Trust- Special Permit pursuant to Section 6.3.6 to authorize the installation and use of a common
driveway to access two (2) lots, identified as lots 3 & 4 on the plan “Topographic Plan in
Middleton, MA, School Street (across from #48) dated 9/17/13” Application #967
Chairperson Piselli stated that the hearing for the petition was opened on October 24, 2013 and a site
walk was conducted on November 17, 2013.
Clerk Anne Cote read correspondence from the Conservation Commission dated 11/19/13 (letter on
file.)
Attorney Jill Mann presented the petition for a common driveway to service two lots. This driveway has
the same attributes as the previous petition. This proposed driveway is 14’ for the common portion then
reduces to 12’ from the split to the homes. Adequate turning radius for emergency vehicles has been
provided. A fire hydrant is required to be installed because the driveway is over 500’ in length. An
easement for the Town to access the fire hydrant is provided within the covenant. Signage for the
homes will be located at the beginning of the driveway and at the split of the driveway to clearly
indicate the homes serviced by the driveway.
Mr. Fox questioned the setback from the abutting property and suggested that the driveway be moved
farther away from the property line.
Attorney Mann stated that the setback is 10’ where possible but the driveway is placed closer to the
abutting property because of the wetland. In addition there is a stone wall along the property line.
Chairperson Piselli asked if there was a letter from the Chief of Police.
Attorney Mann’s copy of the letter was cut off, she suggested that the applicant could go home to
retrieve a legible copy of the letter.
Chairperson Piselli stated that Section 6.3.3 suggests that a second special permit was required because
the driveway is over 500’ in length.
Attorney Mann explained that 6.3.3 relates to the requirement of a special permit for a single driveway.
The Board tabled the matter to give the applicant time to retrieve the letter from Police Chief
DiGianvittorio.

206 South Main Street, Map 26, Lot 3-BA Fitness LLC & 206 South Main Street LLC- Special
Permit under Section 9.4 of the Middleton Bylaws pursuant to Section 3.1.2 and Table of Use
Regulations-Use C.24-to authorize the use and redevelopment of a 3,884 sq ft portion of the
existing 40,000 sq ft building for a personal and semi-private training facility. Application #969
Clerk Anne Cote read the legal notice and confirmed that the abutters had been notified.
Attorney Jill Mann presented the request for a special permit for indoor recreational use. The petitioner,
Janelle Nicolo who was unable to attend tonight’s meeting, is proposing to use 3,800 sq. ft. space within
the existing building as a female bodybuilding training facility. The staff will consist of the applicant
and one employee. The applicant currently works at another gym in Town. There are five dedicated
parking spaces at the front of the building and another ten spaces along the side and rear of the building.
Attorney Mann reviewed the overall parking plan for the property including the other two businesses
that will be locating at the front of the building.
Middleton resident and client of BA Fitness, Dawn Bonfanti, spoke in favor of the petition and told the
Board of her personal success.
Clerk Anne Cote read a letter of recommendation from the Planning Board dated 11/14/13 (letter on
file.)
Mr. Hartwell questioned the access to the rear of the building and expressed concern with pedestrian
safety.
Mr. Fox suggested installing a walkway on the left side of the building to be able to access the rear
parking.
Mr. Bienvenue questioned the adequacy of the lighting at the rear of the building.
Attorney Mann stated that a 4’ crushed stone walkway could be installed with lighting to provide safer
pedestrian access to the rear parking lot. There is lighting at the rear of the building that was approved
with the original site plan. In response to a question on class size, Attorney Mann explained that there is
one to one private instruction for the petitioner & her employee weekdays and 5-10 people for pageant
training on Saturdays. The classes start as early as 5:30 am.
Mr. Bienvenue reviewed the handicap parking locations.
Barbara Piselli stated that she would like to do a site walk, as she was not present at the original Site
Plan hearings for the property. There seems to be some confusion because the plan has been modified
so many times. The Board members agreed to do individual site walks.
Chairperson Piselli tabled the matter to resume the hearing for the School Street petition.

School Street, Map 11, Lot 23-Philip Colosi & Joanne Colosi, Trustees of PC Development Realty
Trust- Special Permit pursuant to Section 6.3.6 to authorize the installation and use of a common
driveway to access two (2) lots, identified as lots 3 & 4 on the plan “Topographic Plan in
Middleton, MA, School Street (across from #48) dated 9/17/13” Application #967
The petitioner provided the letter from Chief DiGianvittorio, Clerk Anne Cote read the letter
dated10/24/2013 (letter on file.)

Chairperson Piselli called for any further discussion on the petition, hearing none she called for a
motion.

MOTION: Made by Anne Cote that the Board make the findings that the petition satisfies the
requirements of 6.3.6 and 6.3.1 through 6.3.5 of the Zoning Bylaw as well as the recommendations
from the DPW Superintendent and the Public Safety Officials. Motion seconded by Richard
Nazzaro. Vote 4-1 in favor, motion carried. Craig Hartwell voted against.

MOTION: Made by Anne Cote that based on the findings, the Board grant the special permit to
allow the construction and use of a common driveway to service lots 3 &4 as shown on the site
plan. Motion seconded by Richard Nazzaro. Vote 4-1 in favor, motion carried. Craig Hartwell
voted against.
Chairperson Piselli asked the Board members if they were available for the regularly scheduled
December 19, 2013 meeting. The Board members all confirmed that they were available.
206 South Main Street, Map 26, Lot 3-BA Fitness LLC & 206 South Main Street LLC- Special
Permit under Section 9.4 of the Middleton Bylaws pursuant to Section 3.1.2 and Table of Use
Regulations-Use C.24-to authorize the use and redevelopment of a 3,884 sq ft portion of the
existing 40,000 sq ft building for a personal and semi-private training facility. Application #969
Chairperson Piselli called for a motion to continue the hearing for 206 South Main Street.

MOTION: Made by Craig Hartwell to continue the hearing to the December 19, 2013 ZBA
meeting. Motion seconded by Barbara Piselli. Vote 5-0 in favor, motion carried.
The ZBA members will conduct individual site visits in the evening hours prior to the next hearing.

Minutes-September 26, 2013 & October 24, 2013

MOTION: Made by Craig Hartwell to accept the minutes of September 26, 2013 and October 24,
2013 as written. Motion seconded by Barbara Piselli. Vote all in favor, motion carried.

MOTION: Made by Craig Hartwell to adjourn. Motion seconded by Richard Nazzaro. Meeting
adjourned at 9:15 pm.