There has been a lot of coverage of problems with Barn Hollow open space over the last two months. And it’s been a hot topic on the agendas of several town boards and committees.
Thanks to Selectman John Rooney, there may now be a compromise acceptable to all parties. (Though, Rooney himself gives the credit to Brendan Homes developer Kevin Giblin.)
The Metrowest Daily News reports that Rooney brokered a potential compromise with Giblin. The deal would allow the abutters to Barn Hollow open land to continue treating it as their backyards. To replace the open space promised to the town, Giblin would donate a parcel of land elsewhere in town as open space.
Rooney recently walked the Barn Hollow area and listened to the neighborhood’s complaints.
Residents in Barn Hollow have claimed that they were led to believe the land was part of the property they were purchasing.
This summer, the town began to enforce guidelines to the open space. Residents were informed that they were infringing and must desist. Some felt as if their backyards were being stolen by the town.
Giblin maintains that Brendan Homes never misled anyone. But, he “agreed to donate an acre or two of land somewhere else so that the homeowners could keep their backyards the same.”
Details still need to be worked out before committees involved can approve and recommend this deal.
The warrant for Monday’s Special Town Meeting includes an article to vote on accepting the Barn Hollow open space. Selectmen now plan to recommend delaying that item.
Related to this matter, Selectmen decided on another delay Tuesday night.
They were scheduled to appoint a committee to create an official open space process. The intent of the committee was to avoid and help resolve issues like those encountered with the Barn Hollow parcel. Instead, Selectmen opted to hold off.
According to MWDN, Selectmen want to wait until after Monday’s Special Town Meeting. They specifically wanted to give time to the new Town Planner to get oriented and then weigh in on the committee participants.
[Chairman Daniel] Kolenda said Tuesday he expects to engage the help of Burney to determine who should serve on the Open Space Review Committee. Giblin has requested that one or two developers get a seat at the table.
“From my perspective, it’s important to have a good balance between the needs for open space as well as our business community,” Kolenda said. “That doesn’t necessarily mean a developer would serve on the committee, but it doesn’t preclude it either.”
To read MWDN’s full article on the Barn Hollow compromise, click here.
To read their article on the Open Space Review Committee delay, click here.