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Special Permit A3 Parking Determination

Certified #7014 3020 0002 2476 6957


Applicant: Sean McCarthy

Premises: 105 South Street
Hingham, MA 02043

Deed: Book 46544, Pages 105 & 122

Date: June 6, 2017

Summary of Proceedings:
This matter came before the Planning Board on the application of Sean McCarthy for a Special Permit A3 Parking Waiver and Determination, and other such relief as necessary for the conversion of an existing 1,000 square foot retail space to a coffee & ice cream shop under Sections III-A.4.9A, I-G, I-I, and V-A of the Zoning By-law, property zoned Business A/Downtown Overlay District.

The Planning Board heard the application at a duly noticed public hearing on June 5, 2017 in the Hingham Town Hall at 210 Central Street. Members of the Planning Board present were: William Ramsey, Acting Chairman; Sarah Corey, Jennifer Gay Smith, Gary Tondorf-Dick, and Gordon Carr.

Sean McCarthy was present to represent the project to the Board. The proposal is for a coffee and ice cream shop with 15 seats in a location formerly used for retail. There is a small parking lot to the rear of the building, and the applicant provided a plan up indicating 10 spaces exist. The calculation for retail parking is 5/1000. The previous uses on site were a salon at 750 sf and a bank at 1,500 sf. Now the uses are salon at 750 sf, office (insurance agent) 500 sf, and proposed 15 seat restaurant. As one parking space shown on the plan is tandem, the Board feels that there are only 9 spaces. The parking lot is not striped, but the Board indicated they expected that it would be, as no waiver was requested from that requirement. The Board was concerned about pedestrian safety walking from the parking lot to the front of the building to enter the business. The Board felt that the rear access should be available to the public to prevent traffic conflicts with pedestrians in the alley accessing the driveway. The Board also felt that parking space #3 should either be incorporated into a handicapped parking space, or be used as a walkway to the rear door of the building. The Board acknowledged that the ultimate location of handicapped parking was determined by the Building Commissioner. The Board heard testimony from abutters expressing concern about increasing pedestrian safety at this location, due to the adjacency to the curve in the road and poor sightline. The concern was that the ice cream shop would attract children and pedestrians, and there is no crosswalk in the area. Another concern expressed by abutters in opposition to this project was that the parking lot was hidden and difficult to access, so the likelihood of increased on-street parking on the adjacent private way by customers of this business was suggested. The Board felt that the Applicant should discuss the possibility of posting the adjacent residential private way as no parking, but noted that could impact the homeowners. They also noted that it was not in their purview, so they were simply requesting that the Applicant look into it. Similarly, the Board felt the applicant should talk to the Police Chief to discuss a potential crosswalk for this area. Ultimately, the Board defers to the Chief of Police and other boards and committees on these items, which are seen as possible mitigation of safety concerns. The Applicant did submit letters of support into the record, which the Board did consider, and the Board heard public comment.

Review Criteria and Findings:
a) The parking is sufficient in quantity to meet the needs of the proposed project;

Yes. There is sufficient parking to meet the demand, and on street parking is available also.

b) Pedestrian access and circulation has been provided for;

Yes. Site is developed.

c) New driveways have been designed to maximize sightline distances to the greatest extent possible;

Not applicable. Developed site.

d) It is impractical to meet these standards and that a waiver of these regulations will not result in or worsen parking and traffic problems on-site or on the surrounding streets, or adversely affect the value of abutting lands and buildings;

There is no waiver required due to the 25% reduction. On street 2 hour parking is also available to meet demand.

e) The granting of relief is consistent with the intent of this By-Law and will not increase the likelihood of accident or impair access and circulation.

Yes. If additional seats are added to the restaurant a modification of this permit would be required with a parking waiver request.

It was Moved, Seconded and SO VOTED to Approve the Special Permit A3 parking determination in accordance with Section V-A Off-Street Parking Regulations of the Town of Hingham Zoning By-Law for the addition of a ice cream shop/coffee shop at 105 South Street for Sean McCarthy, as presented at the hearing and shown on the application materials submitted, based on the findings made by the Board and subject to the following conditions:

1. The Applicant shall engage the Police Chief and any necessary committees and boards to discuss potential crosswalks on South Street in this area and “no parking signs” on Forget Me Not Lane.
2. The Applicant shall provide public access through rear of store, and handicapped parking shall be provided at rear of store, or space 3 shall be a walkway to the door.
3. Applicant shall schedule deliveries for off-peak times. Applicant agrees deliveries shall be in vans.
4. The parking spaces shall be striped.
5. The Applicant shall require employees to park out back in the parking lot.
6. The Applicant shall return for a lookback 12 months from the issuance of the Certificate of Occupancy, at which point the following will be reviewed: adequacy of parking, status of proposed mitigation, pedestrian safety from the alley to the front of the store. If there are complaints regarding parking or safety concerns, the lookback will be scheduled at that time instead of at the 12 month point.

William C. Ramsey
Acting Chairman, Hingham Planning Board

In Favor: Ramsey, Gay Smith, Tondorf-Dick, Corey, Carr
Opposed: none

Cc: Town Clerk, Building Department, Assessor, Sewer Dept., BOH, ZBA, Fire Prevention, Chief of Police