Zoning Board Approves Pool Variances, Continues Sign Request

Two backyard pools received variances from the Zoning Board of Adjustment (ZBA), while a daycare sign applicant was sent to the Heritage Commission. Jason Parent of 38 Tanager Way had gone before the ZBA several months ago and was referred to the conservation commission regarding his request for a variance to have an in-ground pool in his backyard that would encroach on a conservation buffer zone.

At a meeting with the conservation commission in March, Parent was told that if he would allow 25 feet of the 50-foot buffer on his land to revert to naturally wooded growth, that would mitigate the placement of the pool in the buffer. Parent agreed to the terms and went back to the ZBA with a positive recommendation for his pool. However, the drawings he presented in April were not to scale, and he was asked to return with scale drawings.

He did so May 15, and said the placement of the pool would not be able to accommodate the natural vegetation mitigation at one end. Board member Jay Hooley suggested that he allow a separate area to grow back to its natural state to satisfy the conservation commission because the same amount of area would be covered.

The board voted 4-0 to allow the pool with the restriction that there would be no filtration system that required backflushing, the filtration system would be cartridge based, and there would be 25 feet of vegetation, providing a natural buffer between the pool and the conservation buffer.

In another pool issue, Sarah Ward of 28 Haywood Road asked the board for a variance for a 21-foot above-ground pool that would encroach 5 feet into a buffer zone that she said was owned “by a corporation and not buildable.”
Ward said her property was long and narrow and that if the pool were located on the right side, it would be open and visible from the street and she would not be able to see it from the house, making her uncomfortable for safety reasons.

A motion to grant her variance was made by Larry O’Sullivan and seconded by Neil Dunn. It was approved unanimously with the restriction that no more than five feet of encroachment occur.
In other business May 15:

• James and Darlene Cordaro requested a variance for a sign on their daycare center. The sign would replace an existing sign of the same proportions that was on the building when it was a Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
Dunn said the former sign had black lettering and the new sign had vibrant colors, and asked the applicant if she would consider changing that aspect of the sign because it was so “in your face.”
Cordaro said she would.

Resident Pauline Caron said she was on the Heritage Commission and that group ”frowned on bright colors on signs.”
The board members said the applicant could go to the Heritage Commission for approval of the sign, but Chairman James Smith said he was uncomfortable with that, as it is not up to the Heritage Commission to approve, only to make recommendations.

The board’s consensus was to have the applicant go to the Heritage Commission and work out what the Heritage Commission would be favorable to, then return to the ZBA. The applicant agreed.

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