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Board of Appeals



Applicant: Douglas Wielhouwer Owner: Jon F. Rotenberg, Trustee
Eastern Yacht Sales, Inc. Lincoln 349 Realty Trust
400 Lincoln Street, Suite 19 170 Shipyard Drive
Hingham, MA 02043 Hingham, MA 02043

Property: 170 Shipyard Drive, Hingham, MA 02043

Deed Reference: Plymouth County Registry of Deeds, Book 47254, Page 239

Plan References:
1. Plan set entitled, "Hingham Shipyard Modification to Building L, 170 Shipyard Drive, Hingham, MA," prepared by Cavanaro Consulting, 687 Main Street, Norwell, MA, dated March 30, 2017 (Drawing No. EC, PRC, and DET);
2. Architectural plan set entitled, "Hingham Shipyard, 170 Shipyard Dr., Hingham, MA," including proposed floor plans, exterior elevations and perspectives, prepared by DRL Architects PC, 905 South Main Street, Mansfield, MA, dated March 22, 2017 (Drawings A1.1, A2.1 and SD-A1);
3. Plan entitled, "Erosion and Sediment Control Plan," prepared by Cavanaro Consulting, dated May 3, 2017 (Drawing No. ESC); and
4. Plan entitled, “Lighting Plan and Schedules,” prepared by SK & Associates, 20/22 Carver Circle, Canton, MA, dated March 8, 2017 (Drawing EL1)


This matter came before the Board of Appeals (the “Board”) on the application of Douglas Wielhouwer (the “Applicant”) for a Major Modification of the Hingham Shipyard Mixed-Use Special Permit, originally issued May 12, 2003, as amended, under § IV-G of the Zoning By-Law (the "By-Law") and such other relief as necessary to replace the previously approved 3,900 SF bank with drive-thru for “Building L” with a new 6,128 SF mixed use commercial building at 170 Shipyard Drive in the Industrial District.

In connection with the Special Permit Modification, the Applicant simultaneously filed an application with the Planning Board for Site Plan Approval under § I-G and § I-I, along with a Special Permit A3 Parking Determination under § V-A of the By-Law. In addition, the Board received an application for a variance from § IV-G of the By-Law to locate a ground sign on the Property.

The Board opened its hearing on the matter jointly with the Planning Board and concurrently with the hearing on the variance application at a duly advertised and noticed public hearing on May 22, 2017. The Board panel consisted of its regular members Robyn S. Maguire, Acting Chair, and Joseph M. Fisher and associate member Michael Mercurio. In addition to the above-referenced Applicant and Owner, John Cavanaro, P.E., Cavanaro Consulting, and Tom Chiudina, Architect, presented the request to the Boards during the public hearing. At the conclusion of the hearing, the Board voted unanimously to grant the requested Special Permit Modification, subject to the conditions contained herein.

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 meeting.


The subject property was included as part of the Hingham Shipyard Redevelopment, originally approved by Special Permit under § IV-G of the By-Law in 2003. Specific plans for “Building L”, which will be located on the Property, were last modified by the Board on February 16, 2010, and called for construction of a 3,800 SF retail bank with an attached drive-thru. The Applicant now seeks further modification of the plan in order to instead construct a 6,128 SF multitenant, commercial building. As defined by Condition #3, subsection C of the existing Mixed-Use Special Permit for the Hingham Shipyard Redevelopment, the proposed plan triggers a Major Modification since it results in a greater than ten percent change in the area of relevant use. Additionally, the proposed plan substantially modifies the design and architectural elements of the previously approved “Building L” from that of a flat-roofed, brick building with a canopied drive-thru to the rear to a sloped-roof building with a covered front porch and both clapboard and shingle siding.

As outlined in the submitted application and supporting materials, the proposed uses and areas shown on the revised plan comply with the permitted uses and intensities specified in § IV-G, 8. and the original May 8, 2003 Decision for the overall Hingham Shipyard Redevelopment. The proposed mix of uses for “Building L” now includes:

Restaurant (Pilot House) 2,813 SF
Dry Cleaners (Dependable) 2,000 SF
Marine Craft Sales (Eastern Yacht) 1,200 SF
Utility Room 115 SF

During the joint hearing, the Boards collectively discussed potential project impacts resulting from: access through the adjoining daycare facility; two-way circulation through the site; headlight overspill onto adjacent streets from perpendicular parking spaces; landscaping; and the location of an outdoor display associated with the marine craft sales. Members agreed that the proposed plan adequately mitigated potential impacts on the adjacent daycare facility, the greater Shipyard Redevelopment, and the neighborhood more broadly.


Based on the information submitted with the application and presented during the hearings, the Board finds that the proposed Modification does not affect the specific findings of the original Mixed-Use Special Permit, issued by the Board on May 8, 2003, as amended. The Board then made the following findings in connection with the Application:

a. The proposed use will be in harmony with the general purpose and intent of the Zoning By-Law, for the following reasons:
The proposed changes are consistent with the purpose and intent of Section IV-G of the Zoning By-Law. The proposed plan maintains a mixture of uses within the overall development and will contribute to the physical and aesthetic qualities of the Industrial District.

b. The proposed use complies with the purposes and standards of the relevant specific sections of this By-Law, for the following reasons:
The proposed uses, namely a restaurant, dry cleaners, and marine craft sales, will be developed within the maximum allowable floor areas specified in § IV-G. The proposed plan complies with both the permitted uses and intensity of uses required for the Residential - Commercial Option Mixed-Use Development.

c. The specific site is an appropriate location for such use, structure, or condition, compatible with the characteristics of the surrounding area, for the following reasons:
The proposed uses will occupy the same approximate location as a previously approved bank. The architectural design of the building as revised provides a better transition between the more commercial portion of the Shipyard located to the west and the residential portion of the Shipyard located to the east.

d. The use as developed and operated will create positive impacts or potential adverse impacts will be mitigated, for the following reasons:
The proposed development will not create adverse impact to the surrounding area. Headlight overspill onto adjoining streets will be mitigated through site grading.

e. There will be no nuisance or serious hazard to vehicles or pedestrians, for the following reasons:
As previously approved, vehicular access to the site will be gained though the existing paved driveway located within an easement at the adjacent Bright Horizons Children’s Center facility. The modified design of the parking area facilitates safe and convenient vehicular and pedestrian access for the proposed uses.

f. Adequate and appropriate facilities exist or will be provided for the proper operation of the proposed use, for the following reasons:
Adequate facilities exist to support the project as revised. The proposed development will connect to existing sewer and drainage stubs in a similar manner as shown on the previously approved plan. A dumpster is provided for solid waste disposal.

g. The proposed Project meets accepted design standards and criteria for the functional design of facilities, structures, stormwater management, and site construction, for the following reasons:
The modifications, which are consistent with the original Mixed-Use Special Permit, as previously modified, meet accepted design standards.


Upon a motion made by Joseph M. Fisher and seconded by Michael Mercurio, the Board voted unanimously to GRANT a Major Modification of the Hingham Shipyard Mixed-Use Special Permit, originally issued May 12, 2003, as amended, under § IV-G of the Zoning By-Law (the "By-Law") and such other relief as necessary to replace the previously approved 3,900 SF bank with drive-thru for “Building L” with a new 6,128 SF mixed use commercial building at 170 Shipyard Drive in the Industrial District, subject to the following Conditions:

1. The Applicant shall construct the Project in a manner consistent with the approved plans and the representations made at the hearings before the Board.
2. All conditions of the previous Special Permit Decisions for the Property remain in effect unless specifically modified by this Decision.
3. In accordance with the provisions of the Hingham Zoning By-Law, the conditions imposed in the Planning Board Site Plan Review decision are binding conditions to this decision of the Zoning Board of Appeals.

This decision shall not take effect until a copy of the decision bearing the certification of the Town Clerk, that twenty (20) days have elapsed since the decision has been filed in the office of the Town Clerk and no appeal has been filed, or that if such appeal has been filed, that it has been dismissed or denied, is recorded with the Plymouth Registry of Deeds and/or the Plymouth County Land Court Registry, and indexed in the grantor index under the name of the record owner or is recorded and noted on the owner’s certificate of title.

For The Board of Appeals,

Robyn S. Maguire
July 13, 2017