Conservation Recommends Wetlands Permit for Pettengill Access


The Conservation Commission voted to recommend approval of a dredge and fill application for the construction of a new road to access commercial properties south of Pettengill Road.

When they were not initially provided a copy of the application for their March 22 review of the proposed South Loop Road, the Commission asked for more time to review the project. Additionally, the Commission expressed concern they had not seen the agreement with Fish and Game to provide mitigation for wildlife in the area.

The primary functions of the wetlands include wildlife habitat, including threatened and endangered species habitat such as for cottontail, hognose snake and turtles.

“Three weeks ago we asked to see the study to assure ourselves Fish and Game’s decision to go forward aligned with our own local concerns,” member Mike Speltz said.

“This area was considered in the overall mitigation agreement worked out with Fish and Game. The property owners and the Town negotiated payments for mitigation, and Fish and Game was satisfied rare species impacts have been addressed for Pettengill and North Spur Road,” Planning Director Colleen Mailloux said.

The property owners paid in excess of $40,000 to complete a study of and address impacts to cottontail in the area, as well as over $100,000 to the Aquatic Resource Mitigation Fund, according to a representative for the property owners.

Construction of the proposed South Loop Road would result in a 4,281-square-foot impact to the remnant wetlands located between the recently completed UPS and FedEx projects, according to the application.

“We submitted the application to the Department of Environmental Services (DES) in February and the comment period to intervene with the DES has passed; but, we’re asking the Commission to make a recommendation,” Chris Rice of T.F. Moran said. “We have minimized impacts as much as possible.”

“I’d encourage you to look at the wetland impact for this alone and make a determination on this,” Mailloux said, noting she plans to work to improve collaboration between members and the Town.

“It’s a small impact, it’s good for the community and this is where we wanted this going,” Lievens said.