WVN #257: After 5 years, still an eyesore
- Dear Wayland Voter,
Five years after developers sliced the top from a hill on Concord Road, the site is still an eyesore. But a new building permit application is in the works.
Also in this newsletter: Lagging tax receipts could mean less money for school construction and repairs.
NEW APPLICATION FOR CONCORD ROAD SITE
When the developers of 171 Concord Road cut off the top of a hill in 2003 to create space for five luxury houses on eight acres, neighbors decried the change in the topography of the land. The hill destruction inspired an article proposed and
passed at a subsequent Town Meeting which restricted the amount of dirt added to or taken from a development project.
And now, five years later, the houses have not been built, permits have expired and the cleared land at the intersection of Moore Road and Concord Road is still an eyesore. The developers are reapplying for permits.
An access road was built and some stormwater detention basins were installed but there have already been problems. According to Joe Laydon, town planner, trees on neighboring property on Folsom's Pond Road were damaged by the blasting.
Conservation Commission member Andy Irwin was concerned that the stormwater basins may not be conforming because the soils which should be absorbing stormwater runoff are too cohesive (dense) so that water does not seep through as
quickly as it should. A change in the drainage system in the project has not been reviewed by the Commission. In addition, in the last five years town regulations have changed and the borders of the surrounding wetlands have changed.
The developer, Steve Breitmaier, has filed new NOIs (Notice of Intent) with the Conservation Commission to build one of the houses and finish landscaping on another of the five house lots and near the access road. However, before the new NOIs
can be considered, compliance with the old orders of conditions must be established. Breitmaier must provide up-to-date maps of what the land is like now and must show compliance with the old orders of conditions or fix conditions that are not
in compliance. Then the new NOI process can begin. Neighbors are hoping that the project which caused the hill to be removed will finally be built.
-- Betty Salzberg
STATE WARNS OF SCHOOL BUILDING FUNDING CUTS
State Treasurer Timothy Cahill has warned that lagging tax collections may reduce the amount of money available for school building repair and replacement.
"The possibility of a continued decline in sales tax revenue should serve as a reminder that, while we want to get each district the best possible facility, some extras might have to be scaled back," Cahill said in a statement.
The Massachusetts School Building Authority is funded by a percentage of sales tax receipts. Receipts have grown at an annual rate closer to 2 percent than the 4.5 percent projected when the MSBA was created four years ago.
Wayland is among 49 applicants invited to submit a feasibility study. The Boston Globe reported that the MSBA is asking school districts to reexamine expensive requests and reconsider enrollment projections to avoid overbuilding. Wayland's School
Committee has expressed concern that the MSBA high school enrollment projection for Wayland may be too low. MSBA projects a gradual decline from the current 914 students to 731 in a decade. The proposal that Wayland voters rejected in 2005
assumed 1100 students.
Cahill said the MSBA is giving priority to repairs that will prevent larger expenses in the future.
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Wayland Voters Network
Michael Short, Editor