Board Approves House on ‘Unaccepted’ Way

In a relatively quick wrap-up to Nicholas Araujo’s request for a Variance to build a single-family home on Old Schoolhouse Road, the Rochester Zoning Board of Appeals voted on July 26 to allow the construction, but with a couple conditions.

As discussed during the ZBA’s July 12 meeting, Araujo will not be allowed to further subdivide the 15-acre lot into additional lots or add any additional houses.

The matter had been discussed over the span of three ZBA meetings as the board was careful not to set Araujo up for any future negative consequences as a result of building the house on the somewhat dubiously-classified road – Old Schoolhouse Road – deemed a road not accepted by the Town.

Araujo’s engineer, Rick Charon, had to prove to the board that Old Schoolhouse Road is in fact a legitimate road, which he did when he provided several past cases where the Planning Board made mention to Old Schoolhouse Road as “an ancient way” and also allowed other residents to build on the road. Charon also had to demonstrate that Araujo could legally access his property via an easement.

The only thing stopping the board from approving the Variance back on July 12 was board members’ desire to see a certified plan displaying the frontage of the lot and a quick review by town counsel.

Old Schoolhouse Road neighbors weren’t supportive of Araujo’s plan, which they believe would exacerbate an already rough unpaved road surface, but that was outside the scope of the ZBA.

The next meeting of the Rochester Zoning Board of Appeals is scheduled for August 9 at 7:00 pm at the Rochester Town Hall.

Rochester Zoning Board of Appeals

By Jean Perry


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