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Conservation Commission roundup: Town receives climate resiliency grant; Whisper Way concerns addressed

by | Dec 21, 2023 | Featured: News, News

The Conservation Commission at a brief meeting Tuesday night announced that Hopkinton received a grant to develop the town’s first climate resiliency plan.

Conservation administrator Kim Ciaramicoli told the commission that the town was awarded a $35,000 grant from the Metropolitan Area Planning Council’s Accelerating Climate Resiliency grant program. A draft action plan was submitted to the MAPC for the award.

“The funding will be used to develop a climate action plan for Hopkinton which focuses on building an actionable framework of actionable steps towards climate resiliency and decarbonization,” she said.

Three open houses, focus groups and drop-in events are in the works to generate feedback and community engagement.

Ciaramicoli praised Julia Chun, the town’s sustainability, economic development and equity project manager, for pursuing this opportunity. They will be working in partnership during the event planning process.

Whisper Way subdivision concerns allayed

The commission voted 5-0 to approve two requests for two-year extensions for two lots that are part of a Whisper Way subdivision.

Ciaramicoli noted that she visited the site on the day of the meeting. The two lots, while not constructed yet, are “stable in terms of erosion.” They have retaining walls or grass strips in place.

As she explored the subdivision, Ciaramicoli noticed that there are some spots along the roadway that may have been “washed out” during Monday’s torrential storm. She noted that “a lot of the lots aren’t stabilized.”

Project developer Chris Nation appeared via Zoom. He acknowledged Ciaramicoli’s concerns and was “open and receptive” to working with her in the next few days to address any issues.

Legacy Farms request for abbreviated notice of resource area delineation approved

The commission continued until Jan. 9 a request by Legacy Farms owner Roy MacDowell for an abbreviated notice of resource area delineation until an onsite review is conducted.

The review would determine the limits of and regulatory status of onsite wetland resources for a lot on East Main Street.

Mark Arnold from Goddard Consulting represented the applicant. He sought to confirm the boundaries of the bordering vegetated wetlands on the property. He will meet onsite with the town’s wetland scientist possibly by the end of the week.

Maspenock Woods Condos certificate of compliance hearing continued

Attorney Amanda Cavaliere represented the applicant, Maspenock Woods Condos, which requested a certificate of compliance. She provided an annual inspection report earlier in the day to the commission. The hearing was continued to allow time for review.

At the next meeting, Cavaliere said she will have an update on the management of invasives after consulting with the town’s wetlands scientist on a strategy.

Request for invalid certificate of compliance approved for 71 South Street

After some research was performed on the title for 71 South Street before its impending sale, it was discovered that there was an old certificate of compliance. Ciaramicoli noted that work was never completed under this certificate, making it invalid.

A building permit had been applied under the certificate, but no work had been performed.

The commission voted 5-0 to approve the request.

Hearings continued

Several hearings were continued before the meeting. Continuations to Jan. 9 were granted to the Town of Hopkinton on an abbreviated notice of delineation on a Hayden Rowe Street property, Hopkinton Stone and Garden’s notice of intent hearing for 28 Lumber Street, and Wall Street Development’s hearing for an abbreviated notice of delineation for 12 North Mill Street. Also, Grasshopper Energy’s request for a fee adjustment for a new notice of intent hearing was continued to Jan. 9.