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Board of Appeals



Applicant/Owner: Kristin Dziergowski
650 Main Street
Hingham, MA 02043

Agent: Paulette O’Connell
P.O Box 709
Hingham, MA 02043

Property: 650 Main Street, Hingham, MA 02043

Deed Reference: Plymouth County Registry of Deeds, Book 44599, Page 50

Plan References: Existing conditions plan entitled, “Plot Plan of Land, 650 Main Street, Hingham, Massachusetts,” prepared by Hoyt Land Surveying, 1287 Washington Street, Weymouth, MA, dated March 7, 2018 and a plan set entitled, “650 Main Street, Site Plan,” prepared by OCO Architecture Design, PO Box 709, Hingham, MA, dated March 19, 2019 (Drawings A100–A104)


This matter came before the Board of Appeals (the "Board") on the application of Kristin Dziergowski (the “Applicant”) for a Variance from § IV-A of the Zoning By-Law (the “By-Law”) and such other relief as necessary to replace a nonconforming detached one car garage with a two-story, two car garage within the 20’ side yard setback required at 650 Main Street in Residence District C.

A public hearing was duly noticed and held on February 12, 2019 at Hingham Town Hall, 210 Central Street. At the Applicant’s request, the Board continued the matter to a subsequent session held on April 8, 2019. During the continued hearing, the Applicant presented a revised plan that reduced the extent of the requested relief.

The Board panel consisted of its regular members Joseph M. Fisher, Chair, and Robyn S. Maguire, and associate member Mario Romania, Jr. The Applicant’s Agent, Paulette O’Connell, appeared along with the Applicant to represent the application. At the conclusion of the hearing, the Board voted unanimously to grant the requested relief, as modified, with 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 15,613 SF of land located on the east side of Main Street. The lot is significantly narrower in width, with just 53 linear feet of frontage, than depth, with sidelines exceeding 285 linear feet. The property is improved by a single family dwelling (ca. 1833), which historically served as a post office. A detached garage sits to the rear of the existing dwelling. This detached accessory structure maintains a 17.7’, nonconforming setback from the north side property line.

The original plan submitted with the application proposed replacement of the existing (11.5’ x 21’) garage with a new (20.5’ x 38’) garage. The construction would have resulted in a minimum 6’ setback from the north side property line. During the initial hearing, the Board expressed concern with the extent of the requested relief and overall massing of the proposed garage. In response, the Applicant agreed to consider alternative options.

In advance of the continued hearing, the Applicant submitted a revised plan depicting a moderately smaller structure (14’ x 36’ with a 4’ x 23’ addition). The proposed construction, as revised, would result in an approximate 10’-6.5” side yard setback. Two tandem parking spaces would be located on the ground floor with a gym/office, half bath and storage space on the second floor.

The Applicant acknowledged that its plans required review and approval of the Historic Districts Commission and the Board of Health.


Based on the information submitted and presented during the hearing, and the deliberations and discussions of the Board during the meeting, the Board made the following findings:

1. Circumstances related to soil, shape, or topography especially affect the land or structures in question: The subject property has an unusual shape due to a substantially narrower width (~53’ front and rear) than depth (~285’ sides). This condition, in combination with the location of the existing improvements on the lot, including an onsite wastewater disposal system to the rear of the preexisting nonconforming single-family dwelling, especially affect the subject property and not generally the zoning district.

2. The literal enforcement of the By-Laws would involve substantial hardship financial or otherwise. The narrow lot shape in relation to the location of the existing dwelling and associated wastewater disposal system presents physical and practical difficulties to by-right construction elsewhere on the lot. A grant of a variance in this instance will allow for the reasonable improvement of the property in a manner consistent with other single family dwellings in the neighborhood.

3. A Variance may be granted without substantial detriment to the public good. The proposed improvements will not create any noise, traffic, or result in other similar negative impacts. The design is in keeping with the historic character of the property and surrounding streetscape. There will be no adverse effects on the neighborhood and there will be no harm to the public good resulting from the proposed construction.

4. A Variance may be granted without nullifying or substantially derogating from the intent or purposes of the By-Law. The granting of a dimensional variance will permit the location of an allowed accessory use on the property. Relief is consistent with the purposes of the By-Law.


Upon a motion made by Robyn S. Maguire and seconded by Mario Romania, Jr., the Board voted unanimously to grant a Variance from § IV-A of the Zoning By-Law and such other relief as necessary to replace a nonconforming detached, one-car garage with a two-story, two-car garage within the 20’ side yard setback required at 650 Main Street in Residence District C, subject to the following conditions:

1. The proposed work shall be completed in a manner consistent with the approved plans and the representations made at the hearings before the Board such that the resulting side yard setback from the north property line shall be no less than 10’-6.5”.

2. The proposed structure shall not include complete living facilities and shall not be used as a separate dwelling unit.
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 County 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,

Joseph M. Fisher, Chair
April 23, 2019