The Zoning Board of Adjustment approved with a 4-0 vote variances to allow construction of a retaining wall at 31 Nashua Road that will provide a unique buffer for an abutting daycare center, as well as improved drainage on the property.
Nashua attorney Morgan Hollis, who represented Town Fair Tire in an Oct. 15 public hearing on the proposed improvements, said his client looked at numerous ways to use the site properly and found the only way to do so is to install an 8-foot retaining wall.
M+M A Smith Properties, LP requested a variance to allow a retaining wall structure within the rear and side setbacks, and a variance to allow pavement to encroach into the green space areas on the property.
The abutter that will be most affected by the development, Applewood Learning Center at 2 Hampton Drive, supports the project, having reached an agreement with Town Fair Tire.
In a letter to the Board, Applewood Director Elizabeth Brunette wrote that Town Fair Tire agreed to include fencing at the top and bottom of the retaining wall that will provide additional buffering for the learning center, to coordinate the timing of construction with the learning center to ensure it doesn’t interfere with its operation, to donate $50,000 for a natural playground, and to meet with the learning center regularly moving forward.
The site has a vegetated swale on Palmer Drive, and landscaping will be completed in front of the retaining wall.
“With these variances, there will be a good utilization of this lot and the site will be cleaned up,” engineer Michael Laham of Engineering Alliance, Inc., told the Board. “We will be reducing encroachments on Palmer Drive and Hampton Drive, and the use itself will have a lower traffic demand.”
The fencing will ensure people aren’t able to look down into the daycare center,” member Jacqueline Benard noted during the Board’s deliberation. “I don’t see anything contrary to the public interest.”
Member John Smith said it appears green space will be improved at the front of the site and drainage will be significantly improved across the property.
“This plan is much better than what’s on the site now, and this is a difficult parcel to develop,” he said.