High Tech Septic Proposed for Development

A Brandt Beach Road housing development may get a different type of septic system, something that is already in use in many areas, but new for Mattapoisett. Attorney John Williams, partner and legal representative for the project, came before the Mattapoisett Planning Board to discuss a plan modification and to propose upgrading the septic to a ‘Bioclere’ system.

Williams said it has become apparent that the current real estate market has no appetite for two-bedroom homes. His original development plans included two-bedroom single-family homes as well as three-bedroom homes for a total of 90 bedrooms once all the homes are built. That figure was arrived at when the plan included a traditional trickle septic system with common holding tank for all the homes in the development. The Bioclere system (a proprietary system) would allow greater flow and improved wastewater treatment.

From the website of AquaPoint located in New Bedford, a designer and installer of these systems states: “…classic trickling filter systems have been used for over 100 years for wastewater due to the simplicity and reliability of the process…” It goes on to say, “Bioclere is a trickling system over a clarifier that uses fixed-film treatment with varying organic and nutrient concentrations.” The website also points out that some of the advantages of this filtration system are the reduction in nitrogen concentrations, as well as digestion and mineralization of sledge. Johnson also pointed to another benefit noted by the website: The system can handle greater volumes of wastewater. He said that with the septic upgrade, pegged to cost $400,000, the board might be favorable to a move to allow all the houses to be three bedrooms. By allowing the increased number of bedrooms, Johnson impressed upon the board, the parcels would be more attractive to potential buyers.

After further discussion, the board members agreed that if Johnson installed this better system, he could move forward with the increased number of bedrooms. He was told to update his plans to include the newer septic system, and they would approve the amended plans. Johnson will return for that approval during the next scheduled meeting.

Earlier in the evening, Tree Warden Roland Cote, along with resident Dorothy Nunes of 18 River Road, petitioned the board for removal of a diseased maple tree located on the Nunes property situated on scenic roadway. Although the Planning Board has jurisdiction of trees along scenic byways in town, they deferred to Cote’s expertise in this matter. Nunes received approval to have the tree removed.

Further discussion regarding modification to by-laws was postponed until the next meeting scheduled for April 7 at 7:00 pm.

By Marilou Newell


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