07/08/11 The Plymouth Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA) approved a request on July 5 by Construction Management & Design (CMD)for a variance in the developmental standard to reduce the rear yard setback for the standard of 20’ to 10’ at 302 Novelty Street .
Speaking for CMD was general manger Cory Collins. According to Collins, the original plans for the apartment units on the site did not include garages. Collins said the matter came up after several residents asked about the possibility of garages.
The apartment complex is located in a C-3 Corridor Commercial zoning district.
Plans are to erect a six-stall garage building measuring approximately 24’ x 72’.
Only three members of the BZA were present at the meeting. Member Mark Godley questioned what hardship would be incurred if the plans were altered to a five-stall garage. Gidley said, “Why can’ t you just shrink the building?”
Gidley’s main concerns, echoed by fellow members Don Ecker and Phil Scott , centered on what could happen in the future. Gidley suggested that people would use the empty space on a lot on the north end to cut through to Parkview.
Gidley shared his opinion that there needs to be something to prevent existing at that point. He said, “I mean a serious effort, fencing or something to keep people from using that as an exit.” “I don’t mean a little sign.” he added.
Later in the meeting, Plymouth Building Inspector Keith Hammonds said the fire department wants only a chain across the area in order to have access if needed.
Collins said, “I respect Mark’s (Gidley) point of view.” However, he continued to ask for a variance to allow the six-stall space.
Gidley also shared has opinions on projects of CMD in the past. Gidley said, “So often there seems to be parking issues with some of your projects.” He then referred to the difficulty they have had in the past concerning signage and parking at two sites on Oak Road.
Collins indicated that CMD would be open to any contingency that the board wanted to include in the variance request before them. Collins said, “It is never our intention not to do what is asked of us.”
Scott said he was impressed with the plans. He said, “I share Mr. Gidley’s concern, but I feel satisfied everything has been taken care of.”
With only three members present, the vote to approve had to be unanimous. In the end, the request was approved 3-0.
Carol Anders Correspondent