Chain Bridge

Chain Bridge

Thursday, November 16, 2017

11/15/17 Planning Board Agenda

November 15, 2017
7:00 PM
Council Chambers

1. Roll Call

2. General Business
a) Approval of Minutes (11/1/17)

b) 223 High Street Lot 1 – request for lot release

c) Request for minor modification – 496 Merrimac Street (2016-SP-07)

d) Application completeness vote – 255R Low Street (2017-SPR-07)

3. Public Hearings
a) New England Development Continued from 11/1/17
 83 Merrimac Street and 90 Pleasant Street
 Definitive Subdivision (2014-DEF-02)

 b) Evergreen Commons LLC Continued from 11/1/17
 18 Boyd Drive and 5 Brown Avenue
 Definitive Subdivision (2017-DEF-01)
 WRPD Special Permit (2017-SP-05)

 c) Newburyport Manager, LLC Continued from 11/1/17
 Brown’s Wharf, 58 McKay’s Wharf, 72 Merrimac St.,
 86-90 Merrimac St., and 92 Merrimac St.
 Definitive Subdivision (2017-DEF-02)

d) Parker 2 Realty Trust Continued from 10/18/17
 2 Parker Street and 151-155 State Street
 Definitive Subdivision (2017-DEF-04)
 Major Site Plan Review (2017-SPR-06)
 VI.C Special Permit (2017-SP-07)

e) Newburyport Renovations, LLC c/o Lisa Mead
 43 Liberty Street
 Special Permit for Non-Conformities (2017-SP-09)

5. Planning Office/Subcommittees/Discussion

 a) NED/Waterfront West Update

b) Master Plan Update

c) Complete Streets Policy

d) Other Updates

6. Adjournment 

10/18/17 Conservation Commission Minutes Excerpt- Evergreen Golf Course

Evergreen Commons, LLC
18 Boyd Drive and 5 Brown Avenue
Notice of Intent
DEP File #051-0973

Tom Hughes, Steve Sawyer and Lisa Mead represented the applicant. The plans are in the
process of being revised in response to a second round of comments from CSI, which is
reviewing the project for the Planning Board. This response will then be submitted to CSI and
Horsley Whitten, the Commission’s peer reviewer. The two large issues that have not yet been
resolved are the spring average high water level and the ILSF area. These issues have a strong
impact on the design of the development.
Steve Sawyer discussed the ground water elevation that was observed at well #2. He said
the well is not indicative of the aquifer. He said while the issue of the ground water level has not
yet been resolved it is unlikely to result in a change to the plans.
An abutter submitted data from an additional monitoring well directly to Horsley
Whitten. This data has not been reviewed because it did not come through the appropriate
channel, which would be the Commission.

Neil Price of Horsley Whitten summarized the comment letter prepared for the
Commission. The focus of the review was the potential impact of the development on the
wetland resources on the site and the impacts on water quality that might result. This includes
both water quality in the resource area and ground water quality, which might impact the City’s
drinking water supply. It was presumed that compliance with the wetlands regulations and the
Massachusetts stormwater standards would protect both the resource area and the quality of the
water. The project was therefore evaluated in terms of how well it meets key regulatory
provisions. He said upon the resolution of some details, the current project design could meet
the criteria of both the WPA and the local ordinance.
Amy Ball, also of Horsley Whitten, said the applicant should be able to meet all
performance standards if the details of the project are properly addressed. These details are the
performance standards for ISFL, the local performance standards for IVW and the request for a
local variance. The project could be adequately designed to provide a resilient wetland that will
allow for fluctuations in the level of the ground water from year to year while supporting a
wetland plant community. The peer review comment letter includes recommendations on the
type of vegetation that is to be planted in the wetland area and the buffer zone. She
recommended it be determined the ISLF is accurately depicted on the plans. She said the
variance request should include more information on the impacts to the IVW and the
maintenance plan for the conservation restriction area should be a part of the Order of
When asked, Ms. Ball said provided the performance standards are met, the project could
have a positive impact on the resource area. The ILSF is currently not highly functioning. The
IVW would be made larger and deeper and a layer of organic matter would be incorporated.
This would improve water quality and support a more diverse plant community. In addition
invasive species would be monitored.
Joe Teixeira opened the meeting to comments from the public.

Bob Mazzotti, 8 Brown
Avenue, said he does not believe the accurate level of the ground water has been determined. He
said not enough attention is being paid to well #2. In his opinion habitat will be destroyed and
the well will become contaminated when construction begins.

Peter Hatcher, 15 Boyd Drive, is
concerned about basements flooding. He asked about the 57.5 reading at one of the test pits,
which is the same elevation as the basements. Neil Price responded that it is possible for test pits
to be off, so it is best to look at them as a whole. Some readings might be out of line with others.

The Commission members asked to be sent the latest version of the homeowners’
agreement and the applicant’s response to the peer view comments. Julia Godtfredsen will try to
obtain a response from the Water Commission.

The applicant requested an extension. Dan Bourdeau moved to continue the public
hearing to the November 8 meeting. Steve Moore seconded the motion. The motion was
unanimously approved.

10/25/17 Historical Commission Minutes- Excerpt - 1690 House

3. General Business
Berkeley Investments, Inc.
1690 House, 262 Merrimac Street
Restoration Plan
As mitigation for the failure of the applicant to adhere to condition #11 of a 2015 special permit,
the Planning Board is requiring that interpretive signage on the significance of the Samuel Morse
House and its interior elements be installed and a perpetual preservation restriction be placed on
the historically significant features of Towle Manufacturing building. The Planning Board
asked to receive input before its November 1 meeting from the NHC on the progress that has
been made on the signage. Stephanie Niketic and Tom Kolterjahn of the Preservation Trust are
assisting with the review of the interpretive panels. They intend to meet with Eric Ekman and
members of the Planning Office. They wish former workers of the Towle Manufacturing
Company to fact-check the proposed text. They said the captions for the photographs of the
interior must indicate that certain historic features were removed in 2016. They asked that the
text stress the social importance of the 1690 House. The Towle Manufacturing Company and the
1690 House are important to the residents of the City who remember their piece in the fabric of
the community. The preservation restriction on the Towle Manufacturing building is of more
importance to the Preservation Trust than the interpretive panels. Attorney Lisa Mead said she is
making progress with the preservation restriction.
 The Commission will communicate to the Planning Board that the draft interpretive
signage has been reviewed, feedback from the members of Preservation Trust has been received
and an agreement has been reached between the applicant, the Preservation Trust and NHC that
the Trust will conduct research on the text and the panels will be presented for approval at the
November 8 NHC meeting.
The Massachusetts Historical Commission provided comments on the restoration plan.
The plan is acceptable except with regards to the dimensions of the entablature above the
windows. Linda Miller reviewed the plans and commented that the entablature should be
beveled at the top rather than being flat, as is depicted in the plans. The applicant will make the
recommended changes.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

9/6/17 Planning Board Minutes- Excerpts 1690 House

e) Berkeley Investments c/o Lisa Mead, Esq.
260, 268-270, 275-276 Merrimac Street
Special Permit Amendment (2007-SP-03d)
 Continued from 8/16/17

Attorney Mead said there were two issues before the board. In the first, the Towle Building
requested additional fencing to help add privacy in a couple of areas along the site. She showed
on the plan where little fence segments would be added. Erik Ekman, Berkeley Investments, 280
Congress Street, Boston, said it would be the same product used elsewhere on the site.
Leah McGavern made a motion to approve the request for minor modification. Anne Gardner
seconded the motion and all members voted in favor.

Motion Approved.
During the course of discussion and consideration of this application, plan(s), supporting
material(s), department head comments, peer review report(s), planning department comments
and other related documents, all as filed with the planning department as part of this application
and all of which are available in the planning department, were considered.
Attorney Mead said the second item was Condition 11, regarding prior to removal of certain
items and a detailed list that would be created of items not being used. Already there had been
agreement between the City and the applicant relative to how things would be removed, as well
as the email exchange between the City, the applicant, and the Newburyport Preservation Trust.
Mr. Ekman prepared the list of what happened with each item. Attorney Mead requested the
board find the list submitted August 21 complied with Condition 11. She read details on the list
and the communication between the parties.
Members said the list should instead be items to be preserved. Attorney Mead said no, the
condition was a list of items the applicant would not utilize, as requested in a revision to the
condition at the last meeting. Chairman McCarthy said the intent of the condition to provide the
list of items not being utilized ahead of time was to give the City an opportunity to find a home
for items it wanted preserved. Members reiterated the reason for listing items not used. Attorney
Mead said the applicant created a list of items, based on what occurred after the fact. The list
indicated where the items went. The Newburyport Preservation Trust (NPT) took items.
Chairman McCarthy said the board had a letter from the NPT with a list of items. Had the
Planning Office reconciled the two lists? Director Port said no, the letter from NPT came this
evening. He gave a copy of the NPT letter to Attorney Mead.
Members said anyone looking at what happened on the site would have a baseline reference for
what was not used. The applicant’s list was information for the record. Attorney Mead clarified
that the original intent of the condition was not that someone got to decide whether items
remained or were removed, but to have a list of what the applicant was not using.

Public comment open.
Stephanie Niketic, 93 High Street, co-chair NPT, said the trust submitted to the board a letter
with some attachments so that the public and the board would understand that the list originally
required was for the City to decide what historic elements it wanted to salvage before anything
was removed. That list was never produced. The applicant purports they did not have to save
anything, therefore it did not matter that they did not make a list ahead of time. The ‘after the
fact’ list shows only what NPT salvaged. The applicant claimed that nothing else counted, with
the exception of floorboards hear and there. Mr. Kolterjahn’s letter said, “As the City’s salvage
agent, I helped remove items and was led to believe that everything remaining would be retained.
Afterwards, I went to help remove the staircase and complained about its removal and the
missing list. Then I was then banned from the site. Afterwards, all remaining historical elements
were removed and tossed in the dumpster. The building was completely gutted, every historic
element was removed.” This fact was noted in Massachusetts Historical Commission’s July 26
letter. Historical items other than what NPT salvaged were removed. Mr. Berkley’s letter did not
list items put in the dumpster and there was no inventory of those items. The applicant’s
response to the board’s request was untruthful and not compliant with Condition 11.
Jeannette Isabella, 1 Lime Street, said it was another in the long list of historic buildings
destroyed. The City needed to show developers in the pipeline that this cannot happen again.
Public comment closed.
Chairman McCarthy asked Director Port if there was any indication from the MHC that they
were using the list of what was in the building to bring it back to what it was? Director Port said
the MHC was focused on the exterior. Photographs of the original condition were more
important than the list for the MHC to have an idea of what was important to restore. Chairman
McCarthy said an authority was needed to say the list was satisfactorily complete. Members said
the board lacked the necessary experience. What would a conclusion that the applicant was in
violation mean and how would it be enforced? Director Port said it would be a difficult situation
because there were already tenants. They could not cease and desist. A resolution would have to
be negotiated with the board regarding not releasing the remaining units. The building
commissioner could not resolve the matter outside this forum. Chairman McCarthy said the
MHC need to weigh in on whether the completeness of the list mattered. What was the input of
the NHC regarding the list? Director Port had not had a chance to contact Sarah White, NHC
Chairman, yet. Photos were available as definitive evidence of what existed. He would ask
Michael Stein for his perspective on what should be restored and how. Chairman McCarthy
requested the Planning Office’s assistance creating a sufficient list. Members said the applicant’s
list was not a record of what existed. That there was a violation was not debatable. The list
lacked value if no one was keeping track when items went into the dumpster. Chairman
McCarthy needed to know if the list was academic or linked to the PR. Members said if the
interior could not be restored, the list did not matter. The MHC letter said they would not grant
the PR partly because many interior elements were removed. Director Port said the MHC would
grant the PR with a proper restoration plan. Members said any restoration would probably not
include the staircase. Restoration was a benefit. It seemed to be the only solution.
Attorney Mead said context and history were important. The letter in hand from the MHC
offered a PR on the exterior. In correspondence between the City and the MHC, the MHC said
they would not hold a PR on the interior but they wanted complete documentation on the interior
of the building. The NPT did not exist at this time. Mr. Kolterjahn took many pictures, which
were used to make the applicant’s list. A PR on the interior was never the intent. The NHC
wanted to include some interior elements on the PR. The MHC agreed, but their primary concern
was the exterior and overall relationship to the Towle facility. The MHC PR now required an
approved restoration plan for the exterior. The list, a condition of the board’s permit, and the
photos were important together. A restoration plan was submitted to the MHC, the NHC, and the
Planning Office. The NHC approved the substance of the PR now before MHC, along with the
restoration plan. The applicant had worked to satisfy the MHC and, despite allegations, was not
hiding anything. She had provided emails that demonstrated a lot of communication during the
demolition phase of the project. It was important to read the correspondence from the MHC and
NHC relative to the interior, from the beginning.
Members said the unmet permit condition was separate from everything else. Interior elements
were where the condition went askew. Amends would need to be made if the board determined
the applicant to be in violation. The board had not seen the restoration plan. It did not include the
removed paneling. Chairman McCarthy said the list had value to the City when the condition
was written. That value had to be determined. Members wanted a solution and enforcement.
Attorney Mead said a list was required, but preservation of items in the building was not.
Removal was not prohibited. Both the NHC and the MHC PRs would include some internal
elements, such as the brick arches, the foundation, the beams, and others.
Members said the NHC changed direction by including some interior elements. Attorney Mead
said the MHC was allowing it also. Chairman McCarthy said the value of the violation was
unclear. Items that would and would not be kept were not called out in the condition. Members
said partial mitigation would be NHC PRs on some interior features, unrelated to satisfying the
MHC. The NHC might find value in restoring specific interior items. The NPT said good
restoration contractors existed for the work. The value of items not salvaged should be
considered. The 1690 House was a precious building of historic significance. Work should have
been done carefully because everything mattered. It was negligent to toss anything in the
dumpster. Permit conditions were not respected. The list was meant to keep track of historic
items whose value should be determined based on photographs. Future PR conditions should be
clearer up front for interior elements. The building’s rear slider was completely out of place.
Attorney Mead said the slider was part of the original elevations approved in 2007. The issue
before the MHC right now was construction of some slider elements. There was no request to
change the elevations when the applicant was before the board with modifications in 2015.
Chairman McCarthy asked to see the restoration plan. Attorney Mead said the Planning office
had everything and she was waiting to hear from the MHC.
James Brugger made a motion to continue the resolution on Condition 11 to October 4. Joe
Lamb seconded and all members voted in favor.

Motion Approved.
During the course of discussion and consideration of this application, plan(s), supporting
material(s), department head comments, peer review report(s), planning department comments
and other related documents, all as filed with the planning department as part of this application
and all of which are available in the planning department, were considered.

9/20/17 Planning Board Minutes- Excerpts Atria Merrimac Place and Evergreen Commons

2. Public Hearings
a) Atria Management Company LLC (2017-SPR-04)
77R, 85, & 85R Storey Avenue
Major Site Plan Review
Continued from 9/6/17

Attorney Jeff Roelofs, 30 Green Street, said TEC, 65 Glen Street, Lawrence, did two rounds of
test pits. City peer reviewer Phil Christiansen, CSI, was present for the second test. They were
working with the Conservation Commission to provide continuous access around the building
during construction. Three forms of relief were requested. Approval of a modification to the
Major Site Plan Review would allow relocating the walking trail access to the City’s land. There
had been considerable back and forth on drainage.
Director Port said City departments and peer review had provided final sign off. The special
conditions were minor. The Planning Office recommended approval with two conditions for
maintaining the public access during construction and adequate signage for the public. Attorney
Roelofs accepted a two-year construction deadline for substantial completion of the work, but
did not want the approval to expire in two years. Instead, it should run with the property.
Chairman McCarthy clarified there were two modifications and two conditions.
Public comment open.

Public comment closed.
Anne Gardner made a motion to approve of the Major Site Plan Review. Joe Lamb seconded the
motion and all members voted in favor.

Motion Approved.
During the course of discussion and consideration of this application, plan(s), supporting
material(s), department head comments, peer review report(s), planning department comments
and other related documents, all as filed with the planning department as part of this application
and all of which are available in the planning department, were considered.

c) Evergreen Commons, LLC
18 Boyd Drive and 5 Brown Avenue
Definitive Subdivision (2017-DEF-01)
WRPD Special Permit (2017-SP-05)
Continued from 8/16/17

Don Walters joined the discussion by phone at 7:35 PM.

Attorney Mead, Mead, Talerman, & Costa, LLC, 30 Green Street, said AECOM identified a
water reading in OB well #6 that looked askew compared to everything else as of the last
meeting. Peer reviewer Phil Christiansen had not completed his review at that time. He went on
site to dig his own deep hole test. The Horsley Whitten Group, 30 Green Street was subsequently
retained by the Conservation Commission and performed another site visit with Mr.
Christiansen. She expected Mr. Christiansen’s final report this evening. He was not present.
Jay Billings, Northeast Geoscience, 97 Walnut Street, Clinton, showed on a map the two-foot
deep B test wells the City had been monitoring, all constructed in the same sandy gravel aquifer.
He pointed out the City’s most recent test well and the applicant’s monitoring wells on the golf
course. Data from OB Well #6, on the boundary of the golf course and City property, showed
strange water level trends with abnormally high readings in May 2006. The total fluctuation of
about 14 feet was odd because high soil permeability should result in less seasonal fluctuation.
The well was in highly permeable sand and gravel. He showed nearby USGS wells’ data for
comparison. A depression from a remnant kettle hole, located right over the property line on the
City’s property, and a couple of catch basins from Briggs Avenue that drained into the ILSF
depression caused mounding. Mr. Billings said there was no external drainage once the pipe
from Briggs Avenue discharged into the depression causing a large groundwater mound and a
flow reversal back onto the golf course. He believed water flowed away in all directions. Well
data was influenced by events outside the development.
Mr. Billings used data recording devices during the City’s pump test on well #2 this summer to
observe the water level response when they pumped at 200 gallons per minute. Monitoring Wells
#3 and #6 both showed a groundwater mounding effect. He showed an image of the pumping
test. The magnitude of water level change for the aquifer was as expected. Criteria for the WRPD
special permit included demonstrating the project in no way affected the quality or quantity of
water available on site for recharge. That would be addressed by eliminating irrigation
withdrawals and the untreated stormwater discharge from Boyd Drive, a stormwater design for
90% TSS removal that promoted infiltration of treated stormwater, and by reducing the amount
of managed turf from 23.8 acres of golf course to 9.1 acres of lawn. Special permit criteria also
required that the development not substantially disturb the natural topography of the site. The
whole stormwater control system on site provided the well protection. The analysis found broken
down chemicals from DDT, not used since 1960.

Steve Sawyer, DCI, 68 Pleasant Street, described the ILSF calculation. He investigated the
potential for ground water elevations to be greater than 60 feet. Water had lapped against the
well casing during the 2006 Mother’s Day flood. The bedrock high would keep the water
contained. He showed an image of original test pits and new test pits the applicant performed
where high groundwater was found to be 54.8 feet. ILSF groundwater was consistent with other
testing on the site, albeit slightly lower. The cause of fluctuating readings was not indicative of
the site, which was designed for a seasonal high of 52 feet throughout. Neighbors, some of
whom had lived in their homes since 1965, were asked whether their basements flooded.
Flooding occurred in the 2006 Mother’s Day flood, but at no other time. One resident drilled
holes in his foundation and said water poured out through the holes, an indication that
groundwater did not reach 60 feet. Surface water was up to 56 feet during the flood.
Groundwater can be higher than ponding water. The lowest basement at 56.6 feet was lifted to
57.5 feet. Rain gardens were raised above 55 feet and would pond and spill over during an
extreme event. It was standard to design for a seasonal high or 100-year event. The lowest
building was 57.5 feet and the lowest rain garden was 55.2 feet, as submitted for review on
August 23. He was confident the project would be resilient to flooding with the modifications.
Attorney Mead said Mr. Christiansen had seen everything. She learned Director Port had
informed him that he did not need to attend this evening. She distributed materials and said Mr.
Christiansen emailed Director Port that he could answer the five questions submitted by
Chairman McCarthy following the August 20 site visit. She read a September 1 email from Mr.
Christiansen to Chairman McCarthy. Also learned was that a senior AECOM employee lived on
Boyd Drive. AECOM could do no further review. The board authorized Director Port to hire
additional outside consultation at the August 16 meeting. Why should the applicant pay $13,500
to Woodward and Curran if Mr. Christiansen could answer the five questions? The Curran
proposal increased to $17,000 with the addition of the groundwater elevation issue. A second
proposal for $11,500 came from Horsley Whitten, who was already retained by the Conservation
Commission for the project. The peer review process had become convoluted. Chairman
McCarthy said the board issued a 26-page special permit in the spring. This application came
before the board on May 27 and July 5. Mr. Christiansen was asked five questions in July. He
did not have answers at the August meeting. Finally, in September, he said he had answers.
Attorney Mead said modifications based on the last meeting had gone to Mr. Christiansen.
Director Port said the applicant had a civil engineer and a hydro geologist, whereas the board had
a civil engineer and now required a hydro geologist to replace AECOM. The Water and Sewer
Department recommended Curran as more qualified than Horsley Whitten. Protecting the water
supply was more important than the difference of a few thousand dollars. He read the email from
Mr. Christiansen, which said that Woodward and Curran should answer the five questions. The
board and the applicant would benefit from the additional review. The hydrological issues
needed closure. Director Port’s questions differed slightly from Chairman McCarthy’s but there
was overlap. Correspondence with CSI on the elevation issue had not resulted in a written
statement for the board. Director Port read Mr. Christiansen’s emails, which said he wanted more
time to finalize his comments. Director Port did not see the benefit of his attending tonight if
final comments were not ready. He told Mr. Christiansen they were looking at another firm, but
he had not proceeded to hire a hydrologist because Attorney Mead had challenged whether the
board authorized him to proceed. Attorney Mead said all City departments had 60 days to
comment after the May 24 filing. This was their third meeting with the board. She was concerned
that Woodward and Curran’s letter indicated a particular mindset for the review and that the
scope was still unclear. Curran would have to review everything again. Mr. Billings said Horsley
Whitten, already working with the Conservation Commission on Evergreen, were familiar with
the project. He was already interacting with them.
Chairman McCarthy did not have enough information from the City’s peer review to make the
two decisions without a formal, written statement from peer reviewers in response to his and
Director Port’s questions. Members were uncomfortable without the advice of the City’s regular
consultant. Where was Mr. Christiansen’s report from three weeks ago? Chairman McCarthy
said it was still unclear whether Mr. Christiansen would respond to his questions sent on July 20.
Members agreed another consultant was needed. The project was over the City’s water supply
and CSI could not answer all the questions. Chairman McCarthy said Horsley Whitten had a
hydrologist but that was not the firm’s focus. They represented the Conservation Commission for
the project and were a few thousand dollars less. Members leaned toward a compromise with
Horsley Whitten. Attorney Mead distributed a document showing the board’s scope overlap with
Horsley Whitten’s Conservation Commission scope. A board member was satisfied with the
groundwater elevation issue. Other members said confirmation was a worth the expense.
Chairman McCarthy said setting the groundwater elevation was critical. Where was a written
letter to the board saying stating 52 feet was good? Members said Mr. Christiansen agreed the
board should hire a hydrologist at the last meeting. Director Port said the Horsley Whitten scope
did not include the groundwater elevation issue. He was comfortable with CSI setting the
groundwater elevation. The intent was for Mr. Christiansen to coordinate with the consultant.
The board wanted Mr. Christiansen’s written report and considered whether the groundwater
issue should be added to the Horsley Whiten scope. Mr. Sawyer said the groundwater elevation
affected the design and should be in the CSI report. Members asked if the aberrant well behavior
would affect homes built closer to the well differently? Mr. Sawyer said the development was
pulled away from the area in case another well would be needed. The seasonal high against that
well was higher, at 54-55 feet, than the 53 feet in other parts of the site. Members asked if
stormwater runoff from Briggs Avenue would remain the same? Mr. Sawyer said that was up to
the City. Attorney Mead said the City was discharging untreated stormwater into zone 1.
Members thought that was the worst fact learned throughout the public hearing.
Bonnie Sontag made a motion to ask for a consultant peer review from Horsley Whitten as
outlined in the board’s response of September 20 and with the addition of the groundwater
elevation issue. Joe Lamb seconded the motion and all members voted in favor.

Motion Approved.
During the course of discussion and consideration of this application, plan(s), supporting
material(s), department head comments, peer review report(s), planning department comments
and other related documents, all as filed with the planning department as part of this application
and all of which are available in the planning department, were considered.

Director Port would not be able to execute the contract until receiving a check from the applicant
and meeting with Horsley Whitten. It could take until the middle of November to complete.
Attorney Mead would issue a check tomorrow for the existing scope and issue a second check
for the additional groundwater work. Director Port said the other work could prove to be a waste
unless the groundwater elevation was settled first. Attorney Mead would take that chance. She
wanted to see Mr. Christiansen’s report and return to the board October 4.

Public comment open.
Peter Hatcher, 15 Boyd Drive, had requested water levels of all OB wells. There were over 150
readings. Five of the six wells had readings higher than 52 feet. He highly recommended a peer
review of the groundwater elevation. Chairman McCarthy said CSI should have that information.

Jane Snow, 9 Coffin Street, said the City needed their own peer review to answer the ground
water elevation question for the sake of residents.

Michelle Rogers, Boyd Drive, said chemicals found in the soils had been there for 50 years.
Would the chemicals stay in the soil? Mr. Billings said the data was sent to a risk assessor who
confirmed the concentrations were low enough that they did not pose a threat.
Public comment closed.

Members asked about disturbing the soils during construction? Mr. Billing said there was no
concern with such low concentrations. Attorney Mead said AECOM had provided a letter about
the risk assessment at the last meeting.
Bonnie Sontag made a motion to continue the Definitive Subdivision to October 4. Joe Lamb
seconded the motion and all members voted in favor.
Bonnie Sontag made a motion to continue the WRPD Special Permit October 4. Joe Lamb
seconded the motion and all members voted in favor.
Motions Approved.
During the course of discussion and consideration of this application, plan(s), supporting
material(s), department head comments, peer review report(s), planning department comments
and other related documents, all as filed with the planning department as part of this application
and all of which are available in the planning department, were considered.

10/4/17 Planning Board Minutes- 1690 House and Evergreen

c) Berkeley Investments c/o Lisa Mead, Esq.
260, 268-270, 275-276 Merrimac Street
Special Permit Amendment (2007-SP-03d2)
Continued from 9/20/17

Attorney Mead addressed Condition 11 regarding the inventory of items in the Samuel Morse
house to be removed. The applicant submitted a list of items that had been removed and where
they went. The board asked for more and another list was created based on input from the NPT
and photos dating to 2007. The condition was written in 2015, not 2007. The list was not for
restoration purposes. Michael Steinitz, Deputy State Historic Preservation Officer, Massachusetts
Historical Commission (MHC), said in a conversation with Director Port he did not need the list.
The Newburyport Historic Commission (NHC) and MHC focused on exterior, not interior,
preservation. She asked the board to find the condition had been met.
Director Port had discussed with NHC Chair Sarah White whether the NHC wanted any interior
restoration. The NHC was still reviewing interior items to be included in the Preservation
Restriction (PR). Attorney Mead read a list of interior items already requested by the NHC to be
included in the PR. The MHC did not have a problem with including the interior items. Mr.
Steinitz had no comment on the list. His comments were clarifications on the PR itself.
Chairman McCarthy wanted to establish a value for the list. Members said the the applicant had
a right to remove anything they wanted as long as they provided a list of those items prior to
demolition. The City wanted the option to save interior items not being used. On the face of what
was written, Condition 11 was not satisfied. At this point, Condition 11 could never be met.
Mitigation was necessary. A minimum requirement should be interpretive signage placed on the
property and viewable from the public way that told and showed what the 1690 House looked
like. The applicant should consult with the NHC for signage details. Should the board get an
advisory from the NHC before voting? The restoration plan was independent of Condition 11.
Members would be satisfied when the NHC was satisfied.
Public comment open.

Tom Kolterjahn, 164 Federal Street, co-president of the NPT, read aloud Attorney Mead’s letter
to the board. He took issue with the applicant’s assertions they had “acted in good faith” and that
interior items were not lost in process. Both statements were untrue. Neither the NPT, nor the
City, were given an opportunity to salvage critically important historic materials such as
fireplace surrounds and crown moulding. The applicant had not fulfilled Condition 11.

Stephanie Niketic, 93 High Street, said an interpretive signage proposal was submitted to the
board months ago. There was no public value to signage given what was done to the house.
Currently, there was no protection on the Towle building, which could be torn down. An exterior
PR on the Towle building itself was needed since the same people owned it. Most important was
state approval of the restoration plan and the PR before a decision was made on Condition 11.

Bronson DeStadler, 19 Walnut Street, was confused as to what happened to the interior pieces.
Public comment closed.

Members were unwilling to make a decision without NHC input and an approved PR, and would
limit the amount of time the NHC had to respond. Director Port said if there were a decision to
accept the list tonight, there would be no more review on the PR by the board. Tonight was the
last chance to determine compensation. The occupancy permits would not be granted before the
PR was registered in Salem. Chairman McCarthy suggested the board ask the applicant to stop
coming back to modify Condition 11 until the PR was granted. Members liked the idea of a PR
on the Towle building. Interpretive signs should be educational in nature rather than plaques
only. Chairman McCarthy said if the NHC input did not assign a value to the list, the board
would do it. Attorney Mead said the PR was on the October 11 NHC agenda. Another meeting
was scheduled two weeks later if there was no quorum. Attorney Mead requested a date certain.
Don Walters made a motion to continue the Special Permit Amendment to November 1. Leah
McGavern seconded the motion and all members voted in favor.

Motion Approved.
During the course of discussion and consideration of this application, plan(s), supporting
material(s), department head comments, peer review report(s), planning department comments
and other related documents, all as filed with the planning department as part of this application
and all of which are available in the planning department, were considered.

d) Evergreen Commons, LLC
18 Boyd Drive and 5 Brown Avenue
Definitive Subdivision (2017-DEF-01)
WRPD Special Permit (2017-SP-05)
Continued from 9/20/17
Chairman McCarthy said there was a 26-page special conditions decision. The lowest basement
elevations had been modified. The board still needed testimony from its experts. CSI answered
his questions today at 4:30 PM. The board was waiting to hear from Horsley Whitten (HW).

Attorney Mead said HW submitted their first review to the Conservation Commission. Phil
Christiansen, CSI, 160 Summer Street, Haverhill, had received the HW report and revised plans
with non-substantive technical changes. Yesterday, Mr. Christiansen sent comments to Steve
Sawyer, DCI, 68 Pleasant Street, on issues that could affect the design, but not stop the project.
Mr. Christiansen was in agreement with Mr. Sawyer’s data for groundwater and the ILSF, which
confirmed what he had seen over the years. He was on site for additional test pits and determined
a groundwater seasonal high of elevation 52, except at the edges of the golf course where it rose
a bit. The design reflected basement floors above groundwater and ILSF level. A test pit would
have to be done at every house to ensure basements were built two feet above. A model created
by Mr. Billings was subsequently misapplied to the observation well by AECOM. Mounding
readings did not apply to the development. The HW report agreed. Some sewers were below the
groundwater level, something that happened throughout the City. Pipe material had to change for
deeper pipes. He had asked Mr. Sawyer to reflect that on the plan. As it stood now, the plan met
the requirements of the WRPD and should result in an improvement in the water quality.
Chairman McCarthy asked if the seasonal high groundwater was determined by oxidationreduction
(redox)? Could water be above the redox level and not leave a mark? Mr. Christiansen
said the redox level defined the seasonal high groundwater level. If the redox level went higher
without leaving a mark that would not be the seasonal groundwater level. Chairman McCarthy
asked if basements would get wet if the higher level stuck for a couple of days? Mr. Christiansen
said he would be surprised if that happened. Chairman McCarthy asked if the plan was adequate
or class A? Mr. Christiansen said road dirt and pollutants were being removed from the water.
Pollutants filtered out by the soil were staying put. Forty-four percent removal was required. If
everything was discharged, a cleaner filter was possible, but it was all contained on site. There
was no point in doing more. Members asked what type of pipe was used? Mr. Christiansen said
PVC. Members wanted best engineering practices. Would polypropylene pipe provide better
protection against leaking? Mr. Christiansen said welded joints could be used. PVC had gasketed
joints. Ordinarily, water tended to get into pipes, not leak out. Chairman McCarthy asked if it
was necessary to upgrade any designs? Mr. Christiansen said it was more costly, not necessary,
and he did not recommend it. Members asked about the mounding? Mr. Christiansen said there
was a monitoring well on City property where road runoff drained in and a lot of surface water
ponded. Infiltration was greater than exfiltration. Members asked if everything on the draft was
being addressed? Mr. Sawyer said he would correct everything. Mr. Christiansen said there were
elevation issues to straighten out before construction, but nothing was a showstopper. He would
look for revised plans from Mr. Sawyer before giving his final approval.
Chairman McCarthy asked if roofs were infiltrated? Mr. Sawyer said originally, yes, but now
there were drip edges at the eaves and a stone trench at the foundation. Chairman McCarthy
asked if there was a substantial difference with that change? Mr. Christiansen said no. Chairman
McCarthy thought there was a six-foot wide blacktop path around the perimeter. Mr. Sawyer said
it was a stone path. Chairman McCarthy said the zoning enforcement officer would cross
reference the 26-page special conditions decision with the plans to look for inconsistencies. Mr.
Christiansen had answered all questions clearly. The board needed to hear back from HW.
Director Port said that a stone dust path was written into the decision. He recommended
continuing to November 1. Attorney Mead said October 18 was better. Members wanted written
findings several days beforehand if the intent was to vote on November 1. Director Port said HW
would review the conditions and he would have a draft decision.
Don Walters made a motion to continue the Definitive Subdivision and the WRPD Special
Permit to November 1. Leah McGavern seconded the motion and all members voted in favor.

Motions Approved.
During the course of discussion and consideration of this application, plan(s), supporting
material(s), department head comments, peer review report(s), planning department comments
and other related documents, all as filed with the planning department as part of this application
and all of which are available in the planning department, were considered.

10/18/17 Planning Board- Meeting Minutes Excerpts (Clipper City Car Wash)

3. Public Hearings
a) Clipper City Car Wash
74 Storey Avenue
Major Site Plan Review (2017-SPR-03)
Continued from 10/4/17

Attorney Adam Costa, Mead, Talerman, and Costa, LLC, 30 Green Street, recapped project
details. Engineer Paul Avery, Oak Consulting Group, PO Box 1123, Newburyport, walked
through plan changes. The new building was moved 70 feet forward, away from abutting
residents and closer to Storey Avenue. The driveway at back of site came another 10 feet
forward and was about 50 feet from residents. An existing self-service bay was taken out of
service for an equipment room and the existing equipment room removed. Landscaping for the
rear included a row of arborvitaes, existing evergreens, and one large deciduous would remain.
The scrub growth would be removed. Existing fencing would remain. Other landscaping
elements included a large red maple and some crab apple trees. Dead vegetation would be
removed and a designated snow storage area added. He distributed updated plans. The elevations
included the Clipper Way House, evergreens, arborvitae, fence, light pole, and the new tunnel
building. He showed the traffic pattern when the tunnel was open, a directional sign, and cones.
The tunnel’s hours were 7 AM-7 PM. An areal photograph displayed showed four sound points
measured on Clipper Way and a chart of decibel numbers. The range was 54-80 decibels for
background noise. The dryer blower was 57-97 decibels, and the tunnel was 84 decibels.
Readings were taken from a similar facility in Augusta, ME. He showed updated photometrics
with the fences and plantings. There were no light impacts offsite using the existing lights. He
did not provide a cut sheet. He showed photographs of the all glass building and the new vacuum
booths. Glass reduced the anxiety people had about going into a tunnel.
Member comments: Would lights shine directly out of the tunnel building in the dark? Mr. Avery
said yes. The noise ordinance was reviewed. Would decibel readings exceed the ordinance? Mr.
Avery said the ordinance delineated noise at levels of detail that required specialized equipment
to measure. The applicant did not have access to that equipment. Members requested
improvements to the viewscape from Storey Avenue, especially the view of the glass tunnel,
which was not more closed-in as requested at the last meeting. Mr. Avery said the building was
moved and landscaping addressed instead of closing up the tunnel. Members said the fence
appeared to protect the vacuum cleaners instead of the tunnel. Which side of the building was
higher? Mr. Avery showed the image and said the highest side measured 10 feet. Members were
concerned about the need for a noise barrier. The deciduous green barrier would not work in the
winter. Mr. Avery said the arborvitaes would provide a winter screen with the evergreens.

Members asked if moving the building forward 70 feet increased construction costs? Mr. Avery
said no. Members said moving the building forward was not a compromise. Why not add a sound
barrier? Attorney Costa said by moving the new building forward the applicant gave up one of
the carwash bays to be used as an equipment building, which was formerly at the rear of the site.
Daytime noise levels were not that loud. The 80 decibels of background noise was from the
highway. The location was one of the quieter spots in the neighborhood. Chair Sontag corrected
Attorney Costa and said removing a bay had been in the original plan. No concessions were
made. Mr. Avery said the new vacuum would be quieter. The continually running main producer
was enclosed and only ramped up as hoses were used. Members said fencing needed to be
maintained. Was it on the applicant’s property? Mr. Avery said yes. Director Port showed photos
looking across the property to the high-rise apartments. Members said the landscape was scrubby
and unattractive. Pavement went to the edge of the property.

Public comment open.
Paul O’Neil, 23 Clipper Way, said Clipper City had been a great neighbor. His living and
sleeping quarters were at the back wall that faced the carwash. He asked to see the sound level
chart and asked if the readings from Augusta were from an identical tunnel? Mr. Avery said yes.
The Augusta site had greater background noise.

Felicia Miller, 21 Clipper Way, wanted a sound barrier. A tunnel conveyor car wash emitted a
constant roar, whether or not a car was inside. She did not want to hear that noise 12 hours a day,
seven days a week. Vacuum hoses could all be in use at the same time. That was not represented
on the sound chart. Cars would queue up below her living, dining, and bedroom windows with
engines running. She could hear the automated voice from self-service machines.

Jim Divola, 15 Clipper Way, agreed and said car wash activities should be monitored.

Jane Nocera, 25 Clipper Way, agreed and said the car wash activities affected 27 families.

Sandra Barnes, 19 Clipper Way, agreed. The roadway was still 30 feet from the property line.
Increasing the number of vacuums would increase the traffic. Headlights shone into her
windows. Families wanted to enjoy their outside decks. Screening plants would muffle up to 5
decibels of noise only. A sound barrier fence would make a difference. Chair Sontag asked Ms.
Barnes if she could see headlights through the stockade fence? Ms. Barnes said yes.

Ann Veronelli, 5 Woodman Way, agreed. She was concerned about light from the tunnel
building and requested eliminating the automated voice noise.

Mary Higdon, 5 Woodman Way, said cars pulled in at 3 AM with blaring radios. Why did
vacuums need to operate until 10 PM? Why not 7 PM? She wanted a traffic study.
Attorney Costa acknowledged concerns about the noise and said Clipper City was an existing
operation. The new vacuum was quieter, even though it served more people. Automated
conveyor doors closed behind each vehicle. Noise decibels were not especially high. Extensive
landscaping was added at the rear. A preference for a fence instead of plantings could be
discussed. The ordinance favored open space and landscaping was more open than a new fence.
Members said Lowes had arborvitae plantings for $29.99. That was not a hardship item. Chair
Sontag said abutters wanted the stockade fence replaced. Clipper City Car Wash owner Armand
Sancartier, 104 State Street, said he expanded the abutters fence with an extension on stilts from
his property. Chair Sontag said replacing the fence with a legitimate noise-reduction barrier was
necessary to protect the neighbors from the noise. Members agreed. Additional greenery was
needed as well as restricting the vacuum hours of operation from 7 AM to 7 PM to eliminate
evening machinery noise and reduce car headlights and engine noise. There was a big opening in
the back, as seen on the aerial photo. Chair Sontag said the existing fence was on the side with
the high-rises and did not belong to the carwash. A fence extension would not do anything for a
high rise. Members said the viewscape from Storey Avenue of the translucent building was a
concern. Was the viewscape from the street managed under site plan review? Director Port said
screening the viewscape was within the board’s jurisdiction, but not the building itself. There
were some parking spaces on an adjacent property. Bumpers of some type were needed on that
property line. Mr. Sancartier said he wanted customers to see the tunnel. Chair Sontag asked if
there was room for any more screening trees? Mr. Sancartier said no. Director Port said visibility
of the new structure would stand out more than the existing building. Without room for
screening, maybe too much was being crammed onto the site? Attorney Costa said the conveyor
was originally located further back from Storey Avenue but it was moved closer to Storey
Avenue to be good neighbors. It was not so much within the board’s purview to consider the
viewscape from the street, but was within their purview to request screening.
Director Port summarized the conditions: hours of operation for all equipment and lights would
be 7 AM to 7 PM, a fence at the rear should be the full length and height, and the applicant
should adhere to the noise ordinance. Some members were concerned with restricting business
hours in the B1 zone. Other members said the business relied on noisy equipment and abutted
residential property. A solid 10-foot high noise reduction barrier was needed. The residential
neighborhood was built in a B1. Mr. Sancartier agreed to shut down at 9 PM and would consider
limiting the loud speakers. Attorney Costa asked for clarification on the fence properties.
Members wanted a fence with acoustic properties for sound reduction.
Andrew Shapiro approved the site plan review with three changes. Anne Gardner seconded the
motion and six members voted in favor. Don Walters voted against. Tania Hartford and Joe
Lamb abstained.

Motion Approved.
During the course of discussion and consideration of this application, plan(s), supporting
material(s), department head comments, peer review report(s), planning department comments
and other related documents, all as filed with the planning department as part of this application
and all of which are available in the planning department, were considered.