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Applicants:                         Gardner Investments, Inc. c/o Wesley Drew

                                                191 Beal Street

                                                Hingham, MA 02043


Owner:                                 Norfolk Downs Realty Trust and 185 Thomas Burgin Parkway Trust                                                                          James M. Drew, Jr. and Susan Drew, Trustees                   

                                                191 Beal Street

                                                Hingham, MA 02043


Premises:                            191 Beal Street                                 

                                                Hingham, MA  02043


Title Reference:               Plymouth County Registry of Deeds, Land Court Cert. #107464, Book 537,                                                       Page 64


Plan Reference:               Plan entitled, "Site Plan, 191 Beal Street," prepared by Cavanaro Consulting,                                                       687 Main Street, Norwell, MA , dated May 27, 2014, Drawing No. SP, Sheet 1                                      of 2 and an unstamped, undated marked-up plan showing a 34' x 80' area,                                                  received by the Board on June 18, 2014      




This matter came before the Board of Appeals on the application Gardner Investments, Inc. c/o Wesley Drew for a Modification of a Use Variance issued December 28, 2009 allowing a dog daycare and boarding facility. The requested modification would permit training of dogs within the fenced front yard at 191 Beal Street in the Industrial District.


The Zoning Board of Appeals opened the hearing on June 18, 2014 in the Hingham Town Hall at 210 Central Street.  The proceedings continued to July 7, 2014. The Board of Appeals panel consisted of regular member Joseph M. Fisher, Acting Chairman, and associate members David W. Anderson and Robyn S. Maguire. The Applicant was also in attendance.


Throughout its deliberations, the Board has been mindful of the statements of the Applicant and the comments of the general public, all as made or received at the public hearing.




Wes Drew, Hingham Dog Care, filed an application to modify a Use Variance granted by the Board on December 28, 2009. The decision and referenced plans limited the facility's outdoor use to an 80' x 20' area, which would be supervised by staff while in use and treated with special surfacing to minimize potential impacts to the surrounding neighborhood from noise or odors.


Hingham Dog Care would like to add an accessory dog-training component to its business. The requested modification would permit training of dogs within the fenced front yard at 191 Beal Street in the Industrial District. The Applicant submitted photographs of the newly fenced area at the corner of Beal Street and Churchill Road as well as a plan designating a 34' x 80' grassed area within the fenced area for the proposed use. The fenced area would only be used during specific class times and both pet owners and trainers would be available to supervise the animals on a 1:1 or 1:2 basis. The area would remain grassy. The application notes that there is no other available space on the property suited to the business needs because of the presence of both ledge and paved parking lots.


During the initial hearing, abutters to the Premises raised concerns about the potential noise impacts from barking dogs, but otherwise expressed no opposition to the proposed use. The Applicant indicated that staff would be trained to avoid disturbances from barking. Video surveillance will be installed on the yard as well.



Board members discussed potential limitations on the proposed use designed to minimize the likelihood of negative impacts to the neighborhood. Members found that the proposed plan change, allowing use of the fenced front yard, would not substantially alter the relief granted for the dog daycare and boarding facility in 2009.


For the reasons set forth hereinabove, the Board voted unanimously to reaffirm the findings of its Use Variance decision of December 28, 2009 and to modify the terms of that decision so as to allow the training of dogs within the fenced front yard at 191 Beal Street in the Industrial District upon the following conditions:


  1. The fenced yard area shall be maintained as a substantially grassy area.
  2. The Applicant shall adhere to the maximum decibel levels established by the Hingham Noise Bylaw.
  3. The hours of operation for the dog training area shall be limited to daylight hours, plus or minus one hour in either direction, subject to the binding constraint that the use commences no earlier than 7:00 a.m. weekdays/9:00 a.m. weekends and ends no later than 8:00 p.m.
  4. All other terms and conditions of Use Variance granted by the Board on December 28, 2009 shall remain in full force and effect unless specifically modified by this Decision.


This Decision shall not become effective until (i) the Town Clerk as certified on a copy of this decision that twenty (20) days have elapsed after the decision has been filed in the office of the Town Clerk and no appeal has been filed or that if such an appeal has been filed, that it has been dismissed or denied, and that (ii): a copy thereof has been duly recorded in the Plymouth County Registry of Deeds and indexed in the grantor index under the name of the owner of record or is recorded and noted on the owner’s certificate of title.


For the Town of Hingham

Board of Appeals,




                                                                                                Joseph M. Fisher, Chairman

                                                                                                September 4, 2014