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Merrimack Valley

October 31, 2012

Developer seeks to overturn 40B project denial

ANDOVER — The developer of a proposed 248-unit 40B affordable housing complex on Shattuck Road is challenging the Zoning Board of Appeals’ decision last month to reject the project saying the development is “consistent with local needs.”

Hanover R.S. Limited partnership, based in Quincy, has filed an appeal with the Housing Appeals Committee.

The Zoning Board voted to reject a comprehensive permit for the project 5-0 after about a 10 month public hearing process on the project.

The proposal called for four residential buildings that would each be four stories tall. The buildings would have been wedged between industrial properties in the area, which prompted opposition from several area businesses.

Member David Brown said before voting against the project that it would go against town planning efforts that span decades to make that part of town an attractive industrial area for major employers.

Board member Rachel Baime agreed, saying this was not the right lot for the 248-unit apartment complex.

Throughout the permit process many issues were brought up in opposition to the project including the lack of open space on the property for residents, noise generated from existing industrial buildings and a sewer system that would need major upgrades.

The multiple page appeal, prepared by attorney Kevin O’Flaherty, mentioned the town does not meet minimum standards for low and moderate housing.

O’Flaherty mentioned the town’s 2004 Community Development which encourages the introduction of affordable housing developments in this industrial zoned area. He also mentioned Casco Crossing, a 96-unit 40B project approved by the board.

“The fact that the ZBA approved the Casco Crossing project is further evidence that locating multi-family developments in the Industrial D zoning district is consistent with town planning documents,” O’Flarherty said.

He said any planning concerns should have been brought to the attention before expensive analysis of traffic, drainage and the sewer system.

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