Two Planning Board Decisions Today


Tica Douglas (L) and Her Sister at the Public Hearing on 24 St. Lawrence Street before the Planning Board Late Today.

A Rendering of the Entire 383 Commercial Street Project Approved Today by the Planning Board.

24 St. Lawrence Street in its Latest Iteration.  The Front Door is Highlighted in the Middle.

Late this afternoon planning board members said they liked the resubmitted application for the construction of a five-unit condominium located at 24 St. Lawrence Street on Munjoy Hill and they are ready to send it to a public hearing and an up or down vote.

Mark Hyland, Port City Architecture, told the board and about 25 members of the public that neighbors criticized the first iteration of the proposed condominium saying it was “too big, too tall, too wide, the front entrance was not highlighted and the garage was misplaced.”  So, the architects got to work to resolve these issues.  “We think we fit into the neighborhood now,” said Hyland.

But a group of neighbors disagreed with Hyland’s assessment and testified as much.  The major source of contention for some of the neighbors is the safety of a retaining wall in the back yard, despite professional reports to the contrary.  One neighbor testified that if this application is approved, she has hired an attorney to file a lawsuit.  The attorney was present, taking notes, but refused to give his name because he said he did not know how many people he will be representing in the lawsuit.

This evening the planning board approved a Level 111 “Phase 1” application of Joe Dasco, d/b/a Deering Property Development LLC for the construction of a 157 room hotel, public passageway and 89 condominiums above 4 retail units along with structured parking.  Formerly known as the Rufus Deering company it is on just over 2.5 acres of land.  Up to fifteen marine parking spaces have been allocated, although they are temporary until phase 111 of the development is built Joe Dasco told the board.  Some board members wondered aloud whether or not phase 111 of the development would be built, but Dasco assured them it would be built and soon.  Dasco has committed $185,000. to two traffic signals.

No one from the public commented on the project.

The application passed easily with two conditions attached: that Dasco will install a new sidewalk in the phase 111 location and that approval for more interest on the west, white facade will be approved by Caitalin Cameron, city urban planner.  That’s particularly important in the event phase 111 does not get built. (See above left photo.)