New Home at Old Boy Scout Camp

            On May 7, the Rochester Conservation Commission heard Jose Araujo’s preliminary plans for his property, the former Boy Scout camp off Mary’s Pond Road. The Notice of Intent hearing included an update on the restoration plan an enforcement order required of Araujo.

            Rick Charon of Charon Engineering described the project, saying that the majority of the new home would be in the jurisdictional buffer zone, which Conservation Agent Laurell Farinon said was common practice. Charon also said that the septic system would be outside that area. An existing structure on the property is planned to be part of the family home, but would need sonar tubes that Charon said would be installed using hand tools.

            Vice-Chairman Daniel Gagne asked if the existing building met building codes. Charon responded that the structure had been on the site since the 1950’s and therefore would be typified as a legally non-conforming structure. Gagne also questioned if the applicant could make a walkway from the structure to the edge of the pond. Charon said that the homeowner could not be denied access to the water.

            Farinon confirmed that the wetland flagging was correct and that restoration of areas where illegal cutting had taken place triggering an enforcement order by the commission was well underway.

            To the commission Farinon asked, “You want applications in general to include narratives in obvious matters … for wetland issues?” Gagne said that narratives should be clear to ensure that performance standards were being met.

            The hearing was continued until May 21.

            Also coming before the commission was Liam Delowery, South Coast Creative LLC, 68 Bowen’s Lane, with a restoration plan for 2,735 square feet of altered bordering vegetated wetlands in an after-the-fact Notice of Intent filing. Brian Grady of G.A.F. Engineering represented the applicant.

            Farinon reported that a site visit found lots of trucks, trailers, construction materials, and a large manure pile all within jurisdictional zones.

            Grady said that environmental scientist Brad Holmes had been hired to assist in the development of a restoration plan. He also noted that the commission would be making a site visit on Saturday, May 11.

            Farinon said that the process would be in two phases: 1. Dealing with the mitigation issues; and 2. Future filings for business activities at the property.

            The hearing was continued until May 21.

            During an informal meeting with Matthew Moyen of Terta Tech representing Covanta SEMASS, the applicant asked if a Request for Determination of Applicability (RDA) was adequate for improvements to an existing roadway on the property located at 141 Cranberry Highway. After reviewing the proposed changed that would make the roadway “utility grade,” the commission concurred that an RDA filing was sufficient.

            The next meeting of the Rochester Conservation Commission is scheduled for May 21 at 7:00 pm in the Town Hall meeting room.

Rochester Conservation Commission

By Marilou Newell

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