Planning Board to discuss parking lot crossing at “The Crossings” – Monday

Above: Planning will discuss pavers installed between abutting parking lots allowing office park workers a disputed shortcut to Breakneck Hill Road. (image from past Planning Board packet)

Usually, I update readers on Town committee/board meeting agendas on Mondays. But occasionally, a more advance heads up is needed. Since the Planning Board meets on Monday night, and an issue some readers care about it is on the agenda, this is one of those times.

The agenda posted yesterday afternoon includes a discussion of the 144-154 Turnpike Road Site Plan non-compliance. This may just be an update. At this point it’s unclear if the developer involved will attend. (In fact, when I asked the Town Planner this morning, she hadn’t had a chance to inform William Depietri, or applicants related to other discussion items, about the agenda yet.)

The discussion item follows 7:00 and 7:05 pm hearings on 10 Turnpike Road. It will take place in the Town House Hearing Room. You can see the full April 8th agenda here.

If you aren’t familiar with the non-compliance issue, it relates to an access point between two abutting properties’ parking lots. Depietri claims that as owner of both properties he is entitled to connect them. The Planning Board asserts that the egress is a violation of conditions in the site plan for 144 Turnpike Road. The connection allows drivers to access Breakneck Hill Road via the parking lot at 154 Turnpike Road (The Crossings plaza).

Access “of any kind” was disallowed by the order of conditions. In a January meeting, Depietri said that the condition didn’t apply since access wasn’t direct. He equated the access via the abutting lot to drivers using Route 9 east, reversing direction at the Central St/Oak St traffic light, then turning left onto the road.

The board disagreed and opined that the change was significant enough to require an application to make major changes to the Site Plan. Neighbors complained about dangers posed by increased traffic they observed on the street.

In the end, the board and developer agreed to disagree. Future action by either party would wait for a ruling by the Building Inspector. At the time, the new inspector was just getting settled in.

You can read more here.

[Editor’s Note: I’m sure that for some of you, seeing the name William Depietri triggers thoughts/feelings about his even more controversial project – Park Central. The big proposed development is at the heart of multiple court cases involving residents and/or town committees.

I know many of you would like an update. I had already been planning to write one based on an update selectmen received from Town Counsel this week. So stay tuned. (Or if you can’t wait, watch the SAM video.)]

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