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Nockum Hill Condos Go Quietly

The Barrington Planning Board formally denies 'The Residences at the Preserve' condominium development proposed for the town's only remaining rural area near the wildlife refuge.

Nockum Hill Condos Go Quietly Nockum Hill Condos Go Quietly Nockum Hill Condos Go Quietly Nockum Hill Condos Go Quietly Nockum Hill Condos Go Quietly Nockum Hill Condos Go Quietly Nockum Hill Condos Go Quietly

The condominium development proposed for rural Nockum Hill in Barrington died quietly Tuesday night, Aug. 7, as expected.

An attorney in the William Landry law firm was the only representative for the developer, North End Holdings of Wakefield, RI, at the meeting. Several residents from Nockum Hill, all of whom opposed the development during the public hearing, were on hand. Only the attorney addressed the board -- and just to submit several letters.

The Planning Board voted 6-0 to deny “The Residences at the Preserve” after adjourning the public hearing that was continued from last month’s meeting.

The denial echoed a straw vote at the July meeting that indicated the proposed development was dead in the water.

The development would have included 24 condos primarily in a former horse paddock that abuts farmland and lies just east of the Doug Rayner Wildlife Refuge. Up to a half dozen of the condos would have been affordable housing units.

 A 12-page draft motion prepared by Town Planner Phil Hervey that will become the official denial states:

“Denial is based on the Planning Board’s determination that the proposal’s density, design and location conflict with multiple goals, policies and strategies of the Affordable Housing Plan and the Comprehensive Community Plan, and raise concerns about its potential impact on the environment and health and safety.”

The decision by the board “is based upon the following legal conclusions, each supported by findings of fact.”

  1. The Town has an approved affordable housing plan, is meeting housing needs through its adoption of the implementation program of the approved affordable housing plan and has made significant effort to accomplishing the purposes and expectations of the approved affordable housing plan.
  2. The proposal, certified as complete on March 26, 2012, is inconsistent with the Town’s affordable housing plan, as described below.
  3. The proposal is not in conformance with the Comprehensive Plan, specifically the Future Land Use Map.
  4. The Town has plans to meet the goal of ten percent (10%) of the year‐round units being low and moderate‐income housing in accordance with the approved Affordable Housing Plan, as contained within the Housing & Neighborhoods element of the Comprehensive Community Plan.           
  5. Concerns for the environment and the health and safety of current residents have not been adequately addressed. The applicant, as stated in a letter from attorney William Landry dated July 3, 2012, has declined to provide the Town an engineering review fee at the master plan stage, which was requested by the Planning Board at the May 2012 meeting. The applicant’s engineer, Scott Moorehead of S.F.M. Engineering, has stated the proposal would have no negative environmental effects. However, peer review by a third‐party engineer would have enabled the Town to more thoroughly evaluate the plans and the issues cited below, as well as potentially identify other issues not listed.

     You can read the complete draft motion above as a PDF.

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