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TOWN OF STERLING PROTECTIVE BY LAWS with Amendments to October 15, 2007 TOWN OF STERLING PROTECTIVE BY-LAW CONTENTS ARTICLE 1. PURPOSE 5 ARTICLE 2. USE, DIMENSIONAL AND TIMING REGULATIONS 2.1 Districts 21stablishment 5 BouDne2..2tions 5 Lotslit 2.1.3 5 s 5 n o i t a l u g e R e s2.2 U 2.2.1 General 5 2.2.2 Applicability 6 2.2.3 Accessory Buildings and Uses 6 2.2.4 Non-conforming Uses and Structures 6 2.3egse(tionlse) 2.3.1 Table of Principle Uses 7 2.3.2 Radioactive Waste Disposal 8 Const2r.rilnrs 8 Aseslt2.3.4 8 2.4 ApDiloatiinnalirements 2.4.1 Residence in Commercial Districts 9 2.4.2 Single Family or Two Family Dwellings on Non-Conforming Lots 2.4.3 Change in Lot Configuration 9 2.4.4 Multiple Building or Uses on Lot 9 2.4.5 Display Setback 9 2.4.6 Multifamily Lot Areas 9 2.moeabienalirements 9 2.5.1 Single Family and Nonresidential Buildings 9 2.5.2 Two Family 10 2.5.3 Building Heights 2.5.4 Free Standing Uninhabited Buildings, Decks & Pools ARTICLE 3. GENERAL REGULATIONS 10 3.1 Signs 3.1.1 Signs in Residence District 3.1.2 Signs in Commercial & Light Industrial Districts 3.2 Parking and Loading Requirements Gener3a.l2.1 3.2.2 Reduction of Parking Requirements by Special Permit 3.2.3 Table of Parking Requirements 3.2.4 Parking Lot Design 3.2.5 Driveway Design 3.2.6 Landscaping Requirements for Parking Areas 3.2.7 Loading Requirements 3.3 vitloRmeeutirements 3.3.1 (Deleted) 3.3.2 Erosion Control 2 3.4 Access 15 3.4.1 Street Access 15 3.4.2 Driveway Access 15 ARTICLE 4 SPECIAL REGULATIONS 15 4.1 Home Occupations 15 4.1.1 Allowed Occupations 15 4.1.2 Occupations on Special Permit 16 4.1.3 Enforcement 16 4.2 Multifamily Development 17 4.2.1 Procedures 17 4.2.2 Dimensional Requirements 17 4.2.3 Design Requirements 17 4.2.4 Decision 18 4.3 Rate of Development 18 4.3.1 Purpose 18 4.3.2 General 18 4.3.3 Procedure 18 4.3.4 Special Permit Exemptions 19 4.3.5 Exemptions 19 4.3.6 Time and Limitations and Extensions 19 4.3.7 Planning Board Administration 19 4.3A Subdivision Phasing 19 4.3A.1 Purpose 19 4.3A.2 Applicability 19 4.3A.3 Phasing 19 4.3A.4 Exceptions 19 4.3A.5 Zoning Change Protection 20 4.3A.6 Relation to Real Estate Assessment 20 4.3A.7 Planning Board Administration 20 4.4 Flood Plain District 20 4.4.1 District Establishment 20 4.4.2 Development Regulations 20 4.5 Stillwater River Protection District 21 4.5.1 Purpose 21 4.5.2 Determination 21 4.5.3 Geographical Applicability 21 4.5.4 Prohibited Uses in any Area Affected by this By-law 21 4.5.5 Existing Uses 22 4.5.6 Hardship 22 4.5.7 Exceptions 22 4.5.8 Powers 22 4.5.9 Savings Clause 22 4.6 Aquifer and Water Resource Protection Districts 22 4.6.1 Purpose 22 4.6.2 Geographical Applicability and Powers 22 4.6.3 Definitions 23 4.6.4 Prohibited Uses in any Aquifer (A) or Water Resource (W) Protection District 23 4.6.5 Additional Requirements for Permitted Uses 25 4.6.6 Pre-existing Uses and Structures 26 4.6.7 Variance 26 3 4.6.8 Enforcement and Violations 26 4.6.9 Savings Claus 26 4.7 Performance Zone I 26 4.7.1 Purpose 26 4.7.2 Use Classification 26 4.7.3 Prohibited Uses 27 4.7.4 Non Performance Uses 27 4.7.5 Performance Uses 27 4.7.6 Special Procedures 31 4.7.7 Powers 32 4.7.8 Savings Clause 32 4.7.9 Definitions 32 4.8 Wireless Communications Facilities (WCF) Overlay District By-Law 33 4.8.1 Purpose 33 4.8.2 Location 33 4.8.3 Applicability 33 4.8.4 Submittal Requirements 33 4.8.5 Special Permit 33 4.8.6 Conditions 33 ARTICLE 5. DEFINITIONS 34 ARTICLE 6. ADMINISTRATION AND PROCEDURES 40 6.1 Administration 40 6.1.1 Permits 40 6.1.2 Enforcement 40 6.1.3 Penalties 40 6.2 Board of Appeals 40 6.2.1 Establishment 40 6.2.2 Powers 40 6.3 Special Permits 41 6.3.1 Special Permit Granting Authority 41 6.3.2 Criteria 41 6.3.3 Procedures 41 6.3.4 Conditions 42 6.3.5 Plans 42 6.3.6 Lapse 42 6.4 Site Plan Review 42 6.4.1 Applicability 42 6.4.2 Exemptions 42 6.4.3 Procedures 42 6.4.4 Submittals 43 6.4.5 Preparation of Plans 43 6.4.6 Waiver of Technical Compliance 43 6.4.7 Approval 44 6.4.8 Lapse 44 6.4.9 Regulations 44 6.4.10 As-Built Plan 44 6.5 Amendments 44 6.6 Applicability 44 6.6.1 Other Laws 44 6.6.2 Conformance 44 4 6.7 Separability 45 APPENDIX 1. AMENDMENTS 46 5 ARTICLE 1. PURPOSE These regulations are enacted to promote the general welfare of the town of Sterling, to protect the health and safety of its inhabitants, to encourage the most appropriate use of land throughout the town, to preserve the cultural, historical and agricultural heritage of the community, to increase the amenities of the town, and to reduce the hazard from fire by regulating the location and use of buildings and the area of open space around them, all as authorized by the provisions of the Zoning Act, G.L. c40A, as amended, and by Article 89 of the Amendments to the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. ARTICLE 2. USE, DIMENSIONAL AND TIMING REGULATIONS 2.1 DISTRICTS 2.1.1 Establishment . For the purposes of this By-law, the town of Sterling is hereby divided into the following districts: • Rural Residence (RR) • Neighborhood Residence (NR) • Commercial ( C ) • Town Center (TC) • Light Industrial (LI) • Performance Zone 1 The boundaries of these districts are defined and set forth on the map entitled, Zoning Map of the Town of Sterling, Massachusetts (revised 8/3/95), as may be subsequently amended by vote of Town Meeting. This map is on file with the Town Clerk. The zoning map, with all explanatory matter thereon, is hereby made a part of this by-law. The following overlay districts are also hereby created, the boundaries of which are set in the relevant sections of the By-law. • Flood Plain District • Stillwater River Protection District • Aquifer and Water Resource Protection District 2.1.2 Boundary Definition. Except when labeled to the contrary, boundaries or dimension lines shown approximately following or terminating at street, railroad, or utility easement center or layout lines, boundary or lot lines at water body shoreline or the channel of a stream, shall be construed to be actually at those lines; when shown approximately parallel, perpendicular, or at an angle to such lines shall be actually parallel, perpendicular, or at an angle thereto. When not located in any other way, boundaries shall be determined by scale from the map. 2.1.3 Split Lots. When a lot is situated in more than one district, the uses permitted in the less restricted district may be extended into the more restricted district for a distance of thirty (30) feet. 2.2 USE REGULATIONS. 2.2.1 General. No structure shall be erected or used or land used except as set forth in Section 2.3, “Use Regulation Schedule”, unless exempted by this by-law or by statute. Uses not expressly provided for herein are prohibited. Symbols employed below shall mean the following: Y - A permitted use N - An excluded or prohibited use SP - A use authorized under special permit from the Board of Appeals as provided Sen3ern PB - A use authorized under special permit from the Planning Board as provided under Se.tion 6 2.2.2 Applicability. When an activity might be classified under more than one of the following uses, the more specific classification shall govern; if equally specific, the more restrictive shall govern. 2.2.3 Accessory Buildings and Uses. Allowed accessory uses are limited to (a) uses customarily accessory and incidental to permitted principal uses, and (b) uses that are permitted as principal uses within the zoning district and that are clearly subordinate and incidental to the principal use on the lot. Accessory uses are permitted only in accordance with lawfully existing principal uses; provided, however, that uses accessory to principal uses which are nonresidential in nature shall be permitted only upon the issuance of a special permit by the Planning Board. An accessory use may not, in effect, convert a principal use to a use not permitted in the zoning district in which it is located. Where a principal use is permitted under special permit, its accessory use is also subject to the special permit. In all instances where site plan review and approval is required for a principal use, the addition of any new accessory use to the principal use, where such addition exceeds the thresholds established in Section 6.4, such addition such also require site plan review and approval. 2.2.4 Non-conforming Uses and Structures. 1. Applicability. This zoning by-law shall not apply to structures or uses lawfully in existence or lawfully begun, or to a building or special permit issued before the first publication of notice of the public hearing required by G.L. c.40A, s.5 at which this zoning by-law, or any relevant part thereof, was adopted. Such prior, lawfully existing non-conforming uses and structures may continue, provided that no modification of the use or structure is accomplished, unless authorized hereunder. 2. Non-conforming Uses . The Board of Appeals may award a special permit to change a non-conforming use in accordance with this section only if it determines that such change or extension shall not be substantially more detrimental than the existing non-conforming use to the neighborhood. The following types of changes to non-conforming uses may be considered by the Board of Appeals: a. Change or substantial extension of the use; b. Change from one non-conforming use to another, less detrimental, non- conforming use. 3. Non-conforming Structures. The Board of Appeals may award a special permit to reconstruct, extend, alter, or change a non-conforming structure in accordance with this section only if it determines that such reconstruction, extension, alteration, or change shall not be substantially more detrimental than the existing non-conforming structure to the neighborhood. The following types of changes to non-conforming structures may be considered by the Board of Appeals: a. Reconstructed, extended or structurally changed; b. Altered to provide for a substantially different purpose or for the same purpose in a substantially different manner or to a substantially greater extent; c. Reconstructed after a catastrophe, provided that the owner shall apply for a building permit and start operations for reconstruction on said premises within eighteen (18) months after such catastrophe, and provided that the building(s) as reconstructed shall be only as great in volume or area as the original non-conforming structure. 4. The reconstruction, extension or structural change of a non-conforming structure other than a single or two family residence in such a manner as to increase an existing non- conformity, or create a new con-conformity, including the extension of an exterior wall at or along the same non-conforming distance within a required yard, shall require the issuance of a variance from the Board of Appeals. 5. Non-conforming Single and Two Family Residential Structures. A proposed modification (including reconstruction, extension, alteration or change) to a non- conforming single or two family residential structure shall first require a determination by the Building Inspector as to whether the modification would increase the non-conforming nature of said structure. If the Building Inspector determines that proposed modification 7 would not increase the non -conforming nature of the structure, the modification shall require the issuance of a building permit, if applicable. If the Building Inspector determines that the proposed modification would increase the non-conforming nature of the structure, the Board of Appeals may award a special permit for such modification only if it determines that the proposed modification will not be substantially more detrimental than the existing non-conforming structure to the neighborhood. 6. Abandonment or Non-Use. non-conforming use or structure which has been abandoned, or not used for a period of two years, shall lose its protected status and be subject to all of the provisions of this zoning by-law. 7. Reversion to Non-conformitynon-conforming use shall, if changed to a conforming use, revert back to a non-conforming use. 2.3 USE REGULATIONS 2.3.1 Table of Principal Uses. S T CPRINCIPAL USES I D RR NR C TC LI A. RESIDENUTIES 1. Single Family Dwelling Y Y Y SP N 2. Two Family Dwelling Y Y Y SP N 3. Multifamily Dwelling SP SP N SP N 4. Accessory Apartment SP SP SP SP N 5. Boarding or Lodging House SP SP N N N 6. Group Residence SP SP SP SP N 7. Assisted Elderly Housing SP SP SP SP N B. EXEMPT USES AND COMMUNITY FACILITIES 1. Use of land or structures for religious purposes Y Y Y Y Y 2. Use of land or structures for educational purposes oY laYd oYnedYor Y leased by the commonwealth or any of its agencies, subdivisions or bodies politic or by a religious sect or denomination, or by a nonprofit educational corporation. 3. Licensed day care facility for the daycare of six orYfewYr cYildYen Y 4. Child care facility Y Y Y SP Y 5. Municipal facility SP SP Y Y Y 6. Use of land for the primary purpose of agriculture, YortYculYureY Y floriculture, or viticulture on a parcel of more than five acres in area 7. Facilities for the sale of produce, and wine and daiYy pYoduYts,Y Y provided that during the months of June, July, August and September of every year, or during the harvest season of the primary crop raised on the land of the owner or lessee, the majority of such products for sale based on either gross sales dollars or volume, have been produced by the owner of the land and that such land on which the facility is located contains more than five acres in area. 8. Cemeteries SP SP N N N 9. Nonprofit social or recreational club, lodge, sportsman’N clNb orSPaNp SP 10.Airport, airpark or heliport, whether public, private orNaccNssoNy tSPdwelling SP 11. Essential services SP SP SP SP SP C. COMMERU CIES 1. Nonexempt agricultural use, except fur farms and pigYeriYs Y Y Y 2. Nonexempt farm stand Y SP Y Y Y COMC.MERcIE. , DISTRICTS PRINCIPAL USE RR NR C TC LI 8 3. Nonexempt greenhouse 4. Nonexempt educational use 5. Morel, Hotel, Inn 6. Convalescent or Nursing Home 7. Hospital or Sanitarium 8. Commercial Recreation or Sports Facility 9. Commercial Automobile Parking Facility 10.Commercial Kennel, Animal Hospital, Veterinarian’s Office 11.Major commercial project 12.Restaurant, service of food and/or alcoholic beverages 13.Restaurant, Drive-in 14.Restaurant, Fast-food 15.Retail sales, including antique shops 16.Service, repair, or trade shop 17.Business or professional office 18.Bank or financial institution 19.Sale, lease and manufacture of firearms and/or ammunition 20.Open air display area; outdoor retail sales 21.Motor vehicle service station 22.Motor vehicle repair or body shop 23.Sale or rental of new or used cars in open lot 24.Indoor sale or rental of new or used cars and trailers 25.Bed and Breakfast 26.Drive-in or freestanding ATM 27.Place of amusement 28.Adult Use D. INDUSTRIAL, WHOLESALE OR EXTENSIVE USES 1. Bus or railroad station 2. Rail or motor freight terminal; bus storage yard 3. Mobile home park 4. Wholesale, warehouse, or distribution facility 5. Open lot storage of building materials, contractor’s equipment s l a i r e t a m r a l i m . i D s d n a 6. Storage of coke, coal, sand or other minerals, whether indoors or not N 7. Earth removal 8. Manufacturing, assembly, processing, packaging or other industrial n o i t a r e p o 9. Junkyard or automobile graveyard 2.3.2 Radio Active Waste Disposalland within any use district in the town of Sterling may be used for the collection, treatment, storage, burial, incineration, or disposal of radioactive waste, including but not limited to wastes classified as low-level radioactive waste. 2.3.3 Construction Trailersporary trailers, used as work offices and/or storage facilities in connection with construction work on the same site, may be allowed by the Board of Selectmen in any district through the issuance of a renewable 90-day permit. Such facilities shall not be used for human habitation. 2.3.4 Adult Uses Adult uses shall be allowed only by a special permit and only in the Light Industrial (LI) District. No Adult Use shall be located less than 750 feet from the boundary of a Rural Residence (RR) or Neighborhood Residence (NR) District. 2.4 APPLICATION OF DIMENSIONAL REQUIREMENTS 1See the Earth Removal By-law in the General By-laws. 9 2.4.1 Residence in Commercial Districts A residential use located in a commercial district shall conform to the dimensional requirements of the nearest residential district. 2.4.2 Single Family or Two Family Dwellings on Non-Conforming Lots. In any district except a light industrial district, a single family or two family dwelling may be erected on a non- conforming lot in accordance with the provisions of G.L. c40A, s,6, papa.4, which states, in pertinent part: [a]ny increase in area, frontage, width, yard, or depth requirements of a zoning ordinance or by-law shall not apply to a lot for single and two family residential use which at the time of recording or endorsement, whichever occurs sooner was not held in common ownership with any adjoining land, conformed to then existing requirements and had less than the proposed requirement but at least five thousand square feet of area and fifty feet of frontage. Any increase in area, frontage, width, yard or depth requirement of a zoning ordinance or by-law shall not apply for a period of five years from its effective date…to a lot for single and two family residential use, provided the plan for such lot was recorded or endorsed and such lot was held in common ownership with any adjoining land and conformed to then existing requirements as of January first, nineteen hundred and seventy-six, and had less area, frontage, width, yard or depth requirements than the newly effective zoning requirements but contained at least seven thousand five hundred square feet of area and seventy-five feet of frontage, and provided…further that the provisions of this sentence shall not apply to more than three of such adjoining lots held in common ownership. 2.4.3 Change in Lot Configuration.No lot on which a building is located shall be reduced or changed in shape so that the building or lot fails to comply with the minimum lot area, lot width, minimum yard requirements, or other provisions of the by-law applicable to the lot or building. 2.4.4 Multiple Buildings or Uses on a Lot.ultiple principal uses or building on the same lot each must meet the dimensional requirements of Section 2.5 without counting any area, frontage or yard twice. Not more than one principal building shall be erected on a lot unless each such building is served by access and services determined by the Building Inspector to be functionally equivalent to those required for separate lots by the Planning Board in its Subdivision Regulations. 2.4.5 Display Setback. In all districts, open display of goods or products, gasoline, pumps, vending machine or similar commercial devises, or signs over two (2) square feet in area shall be located not less than twenty (20) feet from the front lot line. 2.4.6 Multifamily Lot Area. For multifamily dwellings, see Section 4.2. 2.5 TABLE OF DIMENSIONAL CONTROLS 2.5.1 Single Family and Nonresidential Buildings ZONING MINIMUM MINIMUM FRONT EACH REAR FLOOR MINIMUM DISTRICT LOIZE LOYTARD SIDE YARD AREA LOT FRONTAGE RATIO WIDTH Rural 2.00 acres 225’ 40’ 25’ 40’ -- 100’ Residence & Farming Neighborhood 0.50 acre 125’ 40’ 20’ 25’ -- 50’ Residence 2.5.1 Single Family and Nonresidential Buildings cont. ZONING MINIMUM MINIMUM FRONT EACH REAR FLOOR MINIMUM 10 DISTRICT LS OIZE LOTARD SIDE YARD AREA LOT FRONTAGE RATIO WIDTH Commercial ----- ---- 40’ 20’ 25’ 0.5 ------ Town Center ----- ----- 40’ 10’ 25’ --- ------ Light Industrial----- ---- 40’ 35’ 40’ 0.4 ------ 2.5.2 Two Family Residence ZONING MINIMUM MINIMUM FRONT EACH REAR MINIMUM DISTRICT LOIZE LOT YARD SIDE YARD LOT FRONTAGE D I W Rural 2.5 acres 270’ 40’ 25’ 40’ 150’ Residence & Farming Neighborhood 1.00 acre 185’ 40’ 25’ 25’ 100’ Residence 2.5.3 Building HeightThe height of a building, other than a church, above average grade at t he building site, shall be less than 36 feet. For the purpose of this provision chimneys, ventilators, antennae, spires and similar unoccupied projections above the roof are not included in building height. 2.5.4 Free Standing Uninhabited Buildings (up to 500 sq ft), Open Decks (up to 300 sq ft), Pools. ZONING EISTDICTI S REAR Single Family Rural Residence & Farming 10 ft 10 ft Neighborhood Residence 10 ft 10 ft Two Family Rural Residence & Farming 10 ft 10 ft Neighborhood Residence 10 ft 10 ft The Building Inspector may issue a building permit for any structural change to lawfully pre existing residential dwellings provided the change complies with height and set back requirements of the Zoning By-law. The Building Inspector may issue a building permit for any lawfully accessory residential structure providing said structure complies with height and set back requirements of the Zoning By-law. ARTICLE 3. GENERAL REGULATIONS 3.1 SIGNS 3.1.1 Signs in Residence Districts a Neighborhood Residence District and in a Rural Residence and Farming District the following signs are permitted: (a) one non-flashing sign not over two (2) square feet in area for each fa mily residing on the premises including the name of the owner or occupant and/or pertaining to a permitted accessory use. (b) two non-flashing signs aggregating not over ten (10) square feet in area pertaining to a permitted use on the premises other than a dwelling or use accessory thereto or pertaining to a use specifically authorized on the premises by the Board of Appeals. (c) temporary unlighted signs aggregating not over ten (10) square feet in area advertising the sale or lease of the premises. (d) unlighted directional signs not over two (2) square feet in area, indicating the route to, or location of, a lawful use located on another premises. (e) temporary Building Contractors’ signs erected only during period of construction. 11 3.1.2 Signs in Commercial Districts and Light Industrial Districts In a commercial District and Light Industrial district the following signs are permitted: (a) signs painted on or attached flat against the wall of a building (witho ut limitation on the number thereof), but having a total area not exceeding 40% of the area of any one wall. (b) not more than two Free Standing signs aggregating not more than 40 square feet in total area and pertaining to a permitted use located on the premises. (c) signs may have flashing action but may contain no visible moving parts. (d) unlighted directional signs not over two (2) square feet in area, indicating the route to, or location of, a lawful use located on another premises. 3.2: PARKING AND LOADING REQUIREMENTS 3.2.1 General Adequate off-street parking must be provided to service all parking demand created by new construction, whether through new structures or additions to old ones, and by change of use of existing structures. Such parking shall be on the same premises as the activity it serves, or within 200 feet on a separate parcel, which may be jointly used with other premises for this purpose, provided that the continued joint use of such parcel be ensured through an agreement recorded in the Registry of Deeds. 3.2.2 Reduction of Parking Requirement by Special Permit Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 3.2.1, the Planning Board may, by special permit, reduce the number of parking space required for nonresidential uses upon its determination that the intended use of the premises can be adequately served by fewer spaces. The Planning Board may consider on- street parking available near the premises as a factor in this determination. 3.2.3 Table of Parking Requirements (a) Parking shall be provided in accordance with the following schedule. Principal Use Minimum Number of Parking Spaces Single-family, two-family or 2 per dwelling unit multifamily dwelling Group residence 1 per 2 beds Assisted elderly housing, 1 per 4 beds Connursnsgenet Home occupation 1 per room used for office plus 1 per non-resident employee (in addition to parking spaces for the principal residential use) Day care facility 1 per 10 children of rated capacity of the facility, plus 1 for each staff person on the largest shift School, elementary or junior high 1 per 15 students of rated capacity of the facility, or 1 per 4 seats in auditoriums and other places of assembly, whichever is greater School, secondary 1 per 2 students, faculty and staff, based on design capacity, or 1 per 4 seats in auditoriums and other places of assembly, whichever is greater 3.2.3 Table of Parking Requirements cont. (a) Parking shall be provided in accordance with the following schedule. 12 Principal Use Minimum Number of Parking Spaces Nonprofit social or recreational 1 space for every 3 persons of rated capacity club or lodge Place of assembly, with seating 1 per 4 seats plus 1 per 2 employees facilities (including theater, church or synagogue) Place of assembly, without seating Facilities 1 per 200 square feet of gross floor area, or 1 space for each two persons of rated capacity, whichever is greater Motel, hotel or inn 1 per sleeping room plus 1 per 2 employees Bank or post office 1 per 100 square feet of gross floor area Library or museum 1 per 400 square feet of gross floor area General retail 1 per 200 square feet of gross floor area Sale or rental of automobiles 1 per 500 square feet of gross floor area, plus 1 per 2,500 square feet of outdoor display area, plus 3 per service bay Retail sales of furniture, 1 per 800 square feet of gross floor area, nursery stock or other goods plus 1 per 1,000 square feet of outdoor area used for requiring extensive display area display and sales Restaurant 1 per two seats, or 1 per two persons of rated capacity, whichever is greater Restaurant, drive-in 1 per 100 square feet of gross floor area, plus stacking lane spaces as required in 3.2.4(i) General office 1 per 250 square feet of gross floor area Medical or dental office 1 per 150 square feet of gross floor area Motor vehicle service station or 2 spaces, plus 4 spaces per service bay statasn Manufacturing or industrial 1 per 500 square feet of gross floor area Warehousing and Storage 1 per 2,000 square feet of area devoted to indoor or outdoor storage Commercial recreation or sports 1 per 4 seats, or 1 per 200 square feet of gross floor facility area, or 1 space per 4 persons of rated capacity, gwrhithr.ver (b) Where a use is not specifically included in (a), it is intended that the requirements for the most nearly comparable use specified shall apply, as determined by the Planning Board. (c) Any computation resulting in a fraction of a space shall be rounded to the high est whole number. (d) In the Town Center District, the required number of parking spaces shall be 50 percent of the number resulting from the computations in paragraph (a). The Planning Board, acting as Special Permit Granting Authority, may grant a special permit to reduce the required number of spaces 13 3.2.4 Parking Lot Design (a) Parking spaces shall be at least nine feet (9') by eighteen feet (18'). (b) All required parking areas, except those serving residential premises, shall be paved. (c) In parking areas with eight or more spaces, individual spaces shall be delineated by painted lines, wheel stops, or other means. (d) Parking lot aisles shall be designed in conformance with the following: Parking Angle Minimum Aisle Width Minimum Aisle Width (one-way traffic) (two-way traffic) de(greet2e)2 defret2s13 defret2s14 defret2s18 defret2s24 (g) All artificial lighting shall be arranged and shielded so as to p revent direct glare from the light source onto any public way or any other property. All parking facilities which are used at night shall be lighted as evenly and fully as possible within th e maximum wattage limits established by the State Building Code. (h) Parking facilities shall provide specially designated parking stalls for the physically handicapped in accordance with the Rules and Regulations of the Architec tural Barriers Board of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Public Safety or any agency superseding such agency. Handicapped stalls shall be clearly iden tified by a sign stating that such stalls are reserved for physically handicapped persons . Said stalls shall be located in that portion of the parking facility nearest the entrance to the use or structure which the parking facility serves. Adequate access for the han dicapped from the parking facility to the structure shall be provided. (i) Drive in facilities, such as drive-in banks or restaurants, shall provide stacking or waiting lanes, which shall be in addition to and separate from any aisle designed to provide access to off-street parking spaces. Such stacking or waiting lanes sha ll have sufficient length to accommodate eight vehicles for the first service window, ATM or other station, and six additional vehicles for each additional window, ATM or station. (j) In the Town Center District, required parking areas shall not be located forward of any building front line on the lot or on an adjacent lot. 3.2.5 DrivewaD yesign (a) Access driveways to nonresidential premises shall be 10 feet wide for one-way traffic and 18 feet for two-way traffic; provided, however, that driveways serving two-way traffic may be reduced to 10 feet in width when the driveway does not exceed 50 fe et in length, does not serve more than 5 parking spaces, is not regularly used by trucks, and provides sufficient turnaround so as not to require backing onto a publi c way. Driveways shall not exceed 22 feet in width. (b) To the extent feasible, lots and parking areas in nonresidential distric ts shall be served by common private access ways, in order to minimize the number of curb cuts. Such common access ways shall be in conformance with the functional standards of the Subdivision Rules and Regulations of the Planning Board for road construction, sidewalks, and drainage. Proposed documentation (in the form of easements, covenants, or contracts) shall be submitted with the application, demonstrating that proper 14 maintenance, repair, and apportionment of liability for the common access way and any shared parking areas has been agreed upon by all lot owners proposing to use the common access way. Common access ways may serve any number of adjacent parcels deemed appropriate by the Planning Board. 3.2.6 Landscaping Requirements for Parking Areas (a) All open off-street parking and loading areas, storage areas, refuse storage and disposal areas, and service areas shall be screened from all adjoining lots and streets by a landscaped area with a width of 20 feet, except that in the Town Center District the required landscaped area shall be 5 feet.. Such landscaped area shall be densely planted with a mixture of deciduous and evergreen trees and shrubs, and shall create an e ffective visual barrier. This provision shall not apply to parking areas for single-family dwellings, or to side lot lines separating one commercial or industrial use from another. (b) Parking lots containing more than ten (10) parking spaces shall incorporate shade trees and green areas conforming to the following standards: (1) Parking areas must be shaded by deciduous trees (either retained or planted by the developer) that have, or will have when fully mature, a trunk at least 12 inches in diameter. (2) At least one (1) shade tree shall be planted in or adjacent to the parking area for each ten (10) parking spaces. In sites that are presently wooded the retention of a greater number of trees is encouraged. (3) Each tree shall be presumed to shade a circular area having a radius of 15 feet with the trunk of the tree as the center, and there must be sufficient trees so that, using this standard, 20 percent of the parking area will be shaded. (4) No paving may be placed within six (6) feet of any tree, whether newly planted or retained to comply with this section. All new trees shall be located so that they are surrounded by at least 200 square feet of unpaved area per tree. (5) Parking areas shall be laid out and detailed to prevent vehicles from striking trees. Vehicles will be presumed to have a body overhang of three feet, six inches. (6) Planting shall be done in accordance with proper landscaping practices. Minimum trunk size shall be two and one-half inches (2-1/2") caliper at planti ng measured four feet (4') from the ground. Native trees and shrubs shall be planted wherever possible. Trees which die or become diseased shall be replaced. 3.2.7 LoadinR gequirements (a) Adequate off-street loading facilities and space shall be provided to service all needs created by construction whether through additions, change of use, or new structures. (b) Facilities shall be so sized and arranged that no vehicle need regularly to back onto or off of a public way, or be parked on a public way while loading, unloading, or waiting to do so. (c) Loading areas shall be landscaped in accordance with Section 3.2.6. 3.3 SITE DEVELOPMENT REQUIREMENTS 3.3.1 Deleted 3.3.2 Erosion Control 22.214.171.124 Any area of bare earth exposed through non-residential and non-agricultural building development must be permanently stabilized through replanting, paving, or other means of eliminating wind or water erosion. Such stabilization must be completed prior to building occupancy, or a performance bond must be posted in an amount sufficient to assure completion of such work. 126.96.36.199 Any construction which will expose more than 60,000 square feet of bare earth during development through either removal or filling on the same parcel or on contiguous parcels in the same ownership must comply with the following: 15 (a) Stripping of vegetation, regrading or other development shall be done in a way that will minimize soil erosion. An erosion control plan shall be submitted, having sufficient information on existing and proposed topography, vegetation, and control measures to allow determination of compliance. (b) Whenever practical, natural vegetation shall be retained, protected and supplemented. (c) The disturbed area shall be kept to a minimum. (d) Where necessary, temporary vegetation and/or mulching shall be used to protect areas exposed during development. (e) Sediment basins (debris basins, desilting basins or silt traps) shall be installed and maintained when necessary to remove from runoff waters any sediment from land under- going development. (f) The angle of graded slopes and fills shall be no greater than the angle which can be retained by vegetative cover or alternative proposed erosion control devices or structures. In any event, slopes left exposed must immediately be planted or otherwise provided with permanent ground cover or other means sufficient to retain erosion. (g) A ground cover sufficient to retain erosion must be planted or otherwise provided within 30 working days, season permitting, of any portion of the tract upon which further active construction is not being undertaken. (h) The development plan or land-disturbing activity shall be fitted to the topography and soils so as to create the least erosion potential. 188.8.131.52 The Building Inspector may require review of erosion control proposals by the Soil Conservation Service or others expert in soil mechanics in cases where doubt as to adequacy or proposed measures exists. Selection of techniques and determination of adequacy of measures shall, unless otherwise specified, be consistent with Guidelines for Soil and Water Conservation in Urbanizing Areas of Massachusetts, USDA Soil Conservation Service, 1975. 184.108.40.206 All storm water management systems for new development and redevelopment projects that result in a land disturbance of one or more acres and discharge storm water into the municipal system must comply with the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Storm water Management Policy Handbook and Technical Handbook, whether or not the project falls within the jurisdiction of the Wetland Protection Act (MGL Ch 131 S 40). This enforcement will include projects that are less than one acre if the project is part of a larger common plan development. 3.4 ACCESS 3.4.1 Street Access Every lot created shall be provided with access from a “Street” as defined herein. Every lot created for residential use shall be provided with access from a “Street” as defined herein and said access will be included within the ‘lot frontage’, as defined herein, of said lot nd except for a shared driveway as provided for in Section 3.4.2 (2 sentence added 4/26/88). Determination that a parcel is not a buildable lot because of access inadequacy may be appealed to the Board of Appeals by any party having standing as provided in Chapter 40A, section 8, Massachusetts General Laws, as amended. 3.4.2 Driveway Access Required off-street parking and loading spaces shall have adequate vehicular access to a street as determined by the Building Inspector or, if site plan review is involved, the Planning Board. A shared driveway shall not be considered adequate access if serving parking spaces on more than two lots, except that by Special Permit from the Planning Board a shared driveway may be determined to provide adequate access to parking spaces on no more than four lots. 16 A shared driveway shall not be considered adequate access for any lot created for residential use, except that by Special Permit from the Planning Board a shared driveway maybe determined to provide adequate access to parking spaces for no more than four (4) dwelling units. (amended 4/25/88) ARTICLE 4. SPECIAL REGULATIONS 4.1 HOME OCCUPATIONS 4.1.1 Allowed Occupations Home occupations shall be allowed without need for a special permit only if meeting all of the following: (a) The occupation shall be operated by a person residing on the premises. At no time shall there be more than one employee present on the premises who is not also a resident thereon. (b) There shall be no evidence of the occupation through persistent or excessive sound, or through vibration, smell, or sight discernible at the boundaries of the premises, except for a sign as permitted by Section 3.1 or for display of produce raised on the premises. (c) Any exterior storage of materials or equipment or business-related parking shall be so located and so screened (through location, grade, or vegetative screening), as to be in compliance with (b) above. (d) Not more than two vehicles requiring registration as taxis, buses, or commercial vehicles shall be regularly parked outdoors on the premises. (e) Traffic generated shall not be more disruptive to the neighborhood than traffic normally resulting from residential development considering volume, type, hours, and other traffic characteristics. The occupation shall be conducted within a dwelling, with no use of accessory structures except for parking or incidental storage in an existing accessory structure. 4.1.2 Occupation on Special Permit A special permit from the Board of Appeals may authorize any or all of the following for a home occupation: (a) Employment on the premises of two or more persons not resident thereon. Not more than there such persons shall be authorized except when, because of the circumstances of the location or the occupation, such additional employment will not adversely affect the neighborhood. (b) Reasonable modification of the limitation in 4.1.1 (b) above. (c) Parking or outside storage not capable of being located and screened as required by 4.1.1 (b) above. (d) Parking of vehicles other than as allowed under 4.1.1 (d) above. (e) Activity likely to result in more traffic allowed under 4.1.1 (e) above. (f) Use of an existing accessory structure for other than parking or incidental storage. (g) Storage or equipment or materials on premises other than the residence of the operator. Such special permit shall be granted only if the Board of Appeals determines that the activities will not create hazard, disturbance to any abutter, or injury to the neighborhood, and will not create unsightliness visible from any public way or neighboring property. Such special permit shall impose conditions and limitations as necessary to protect abutting properties and the public, including the limitation that the home occupation authorized by the special permit may not be transferred to a different operator without a new special permit, that the occupation shall be subject to compliance review by the Building Inspector at periods specified in the special permit, and that such special permit may be revoked by a majority vote of the Board of Appeals at any time after notice and hearing, upon the Board’s determination that the terms of the special permit are being violated. 4.1.3 Enforcement (a) A certificate of Use and Occupancy must be obtained from the Building Inspector indicating compliance with these requirements prior to initiation of a home occupation. 17 (b) Any person may request enforcement of these provisions by the Building Inspector where a violation is believed to exist, as provided in Chapter, 40A, section 7, Massachusetts General Laws, as amended, and if dissatisfied with the outcome, such person may bring an appeal to the Board of Appeals for hearing and action as provided in Chapter 40A, section 8, Massachusetts General Laws, as amended. 4.2 MULTIFAMILY DEVELOPMENT 4.2.1 Procedures Applications for a special permit for multifamily dwellings shall be accompanied by 8 copies of drawings indicating schematically the types of information required for Site Plan Review (see 220.127.116.11). Upon receipt, one copy each of the application and drawings shall be transmitted by the Board of Appeals to the Selectmen, Planning Board, Conservation Commission, Board of Health, and Department of Public Works for their advisory review. As specified in Chapter 40A, section 11, Massachusetts General Laws, as amended, failure of any such board or agency to make recommendations within 35 days of receipt of the materials shall be deemed lack of opposition thereto. 4.2.2 Dimensional Requirements (a) Lot Area. Minimum lot area shall not be less than required under Section 2.5, and minimum lot area per dwelling unit shall not be less than the following; DISTRICTD AWEELALINIG NeighboRresodence ft. q,000 Rural Residence and Farming 15,000 sq. ft. (b) Other requirements. All other dimensional requirements of Section 2.5 shall apply, except as provided in 4.2.3 (f). 4.2.3 Design Requirements The purposes of these design requirements are to ensure that multifamily dwellings and developments are consistent in scale and site design with the single-family residential character of the Town of Sterling; to protect the environment; to ensure traffic and pedestrian safety; and to minimize visual impacts. (a) Site Design (1) All dwellings and structures shall be located a minimum of 200 feet from adjacent properties and public ways, unless the Board of Appeals authorizes a setback reduction to a minimum of 100 feet upon its determination that existing natural vegetation and/or proposed plantings provide effective visual screening. (2) Principal buildings on a lot in single ownership shall be no less than one hundred (100) feet apart from each other. (3) All dwellings and structures shall be located a minimum of 150 feet from adjacent surface waters or wetlands, unless greater restrictions are imposed by state law. (4) Peak stormwater runoff from the site shall not be increased in a ten-year storm. (b) Building Design (1) No structure shall contain more than eight (8) dwelling units, and no building entrance shall serve more than two (2) dwelling units. (2) Not more than five percent (5%) of the dwelling units in a multifamily development shall have more than two (2) bedrooms. (3) No floor except an unoccupied basement shall be below grade at its entire perimeter. (c) Circulation and Parking (1) No parking area shall contain more than sixteen (16) parking spaces. All parking areas shall be connected to the structures by walkways. (2) All parking areas shall conform to the design requirements set forth in Section 3.2.4; and all parking areas, loading areas, and refuse disposal areas shall conform to the landscaping requirements set forth in Section 3.2.6. Buffer areas shall be retained in their natural vegetative state to the maximum extent feasible. 18 (3) Any road or driveway serving 12 or more dwelling units shall have at least 250 visibility in each travel direction, and shall be separated from all other driveways or intersecting streets by at least 150 feet. (4) Interior roads and utilities shall provide service functionally equivalent to that assured individual lots under the Planning Board's Subdivision Rules and Regulations. (d) Open Space (1) At least sixty percent (60%) of the parcel shall be maintained as open space, and at least forty percent (40%) of the parcel shall be contiguous open space, excluding required yards a
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