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Board of Appeals



Applicant: Tricia Sullivan & Mike Hagopian
14 Stoddard Road
Hingham, MA 02043

Property: 14 Stoddard Road Hingham, MA 02043

Deed Reference: Plymouth County Registry of Deeds, Book 48604, Page 24

Plan Reference: Site plan entitled, “As Built Plan, #14 Stoddard Road, Hingham,” prepared by Norman H. Clapp & Assoc., 28 South Main St., Randolph, MA, dated August 25, 2006 (1 Sheet, revised to depict proposed construction) and Architectural drawings entitled, "Sullivan Hagopian Residence, 10 Stoddard Rd., Hingham, MA," prepared by A. Kearney Architects, 222 North Street, Hingham, MA, dated August 30, 2017 (Cover and 4 Drawings)


This matter came before the Board of Appeals (the “Board”) on the application of Tricia Sullivan and Mike Hagopian (collectively, the “Applicant”) for a Variance from § IV-A of the Zoning By-Law (the “By-Law”) and such other relief as necessary to 1.) construct an attached (20’x26’) garage resulting in a 12’ side yard setback where 15’ is required and 2.) extend a front porch within the required front yard setback at 14 Stoddard Street in Residence District A.

A public hearing was duly noticed and held on October 17, 2017, at the Town Hall, 210 Central Street. The Board panel consisted of its regular members Robyn S. Maguire, Chair, and Joseph M. Fisher, and associate member Michael Mercurio. The Applicant and project architect, Alan Kearney, appeared to present the request. At the conclusion of the hearing, the Board voted unanimously to grant the requested relief subject to conditions set forth below.

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.


The subject property consists of approximately 14,474 SF located on the north side of Stoddard Street. The lot has an irregular shape, with greater length (~200’) than width (80’ front and 68.44’ rear). The property is improved by a single-family dwelling (ca. 1930) and detached two-car garage that occupies the approximate center of the lot.

The proposed plan would replace the existing detached garage with an attached, oversized single-car garage. The proposed construction would result in a 12’ west side setback or an approximate 78 SF incursion. In conjunction with the garage addition, the applicant plans to also extend an existing front porch within the required front yard setback. The project architect confirmed that the existing front porch will not be reconstructed and that the extended portion within the front yard setback is less than 30 SF. As a result, the Board determined that the projections exemption under Section IV-C, 8. allows the extension by-right.

With the application, the Board received a letter of support from an abutter and during the hearing two members of the public spoke in favor of the request.


Based upon the information submitted and received, and the deliberations and discussions of Board members during the hearing, the Board has determined that:

1. There are circumstances relating to soil conditions, shape or topography especially affecting the land but not affecting generally the zoning district. The lot has an irregular shape that is narrow and deep. This circumstance, in combination with the existing improvements on the property, does not generally affect the surrounding neighborhood or the overall district more generally.

2. The literal enforcement of the Bylaws would involve substantial hardship financial or otherwise. The narrow lot width precludes the by right location of a conforming garage elsewhere on the property that would provide the required functionality and convenience evident with similar accessory uses elsewhere in the district. A grant of a Variance in this instance will allow for a reasonable use that is consistent with a single family use in the Residence A Zoning District.

3. A variance may be granted without substantial detriment to the public good. The proposed project will not create any noise, traffic, or result in other similar negative impacts. The design of the proposed structure is consistent with other residential development in the neighborhood. There will be no adverse effects or harm to the public good.

4. A variance may be granted without nullifying or substantially derogating from the intent
or purposes of the Bylaw. The extent of the proposed incursion is relatively modest. The proposed project, which will result in an allowed accessory use, will not substantially derogate from the intent of the By-Law. The granting of a dimensional variance in this instance is consistent with the purposes of the By-Law.


Upon a motion made by Joseph M. Fisher and seconded by Michael Mercurio, the Board voted unanimously to grant the requested Variance from § IV-A of the By-Law to construct an attached (20’x26’) garage resulting in a 12’ side yard setback where 15’ is required at 14 Stoddard Street in Residence District A, 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. The resulting side yard setback shall be no less than 12’.

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
December 12, 2017