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7:00 PM Wednesday, January 6, 2009
Task Force Members Present: Susan Murphy, Hingham Planning Board; John Riley, Selectmen; Ben Wilcox, HDIC; Alan Perrault, Harbor Development Committee; Peter Fee, Trustees of the Hingham Bathing Beach; Katy Lacy, Town Planner, Ken Corson Acting Harbormaster.
Review Minutes of December 16, 2009
It was moved, seconded, and SO VOTED to approve the minutes of December 16, 2009.
Updates: Acting Harbormaster Ken Corson reported that he was still working on the revised Harbor Regulations, and would have a draft complete and available for review on the Town Website shortly, and would be discussed further at the next HTF meeting on
Ms. Murphy asked Selectmen John Riley to discuss with the other Selectmen the need to reserve a general warrant article in the case that changes to the Harbor Regulations required related modifications to the Harbor By-Law, which would require a vote of Town Meeting.
Hingham Harbor Overlay District: The remainder of the meeting was spent discussing a proposed Hingham Harbor Overlay District By-Law. Ms. Murphy outlined the process for amending the Zoning By-Law, and explained how an Overlay District could apply to the Hingham Harbor Area.
Discussion focused on the purpose of such a district, as well as discussion of the properties to which it would apply.
The Task Force and residents in attendance at the hearing identified the following items that could possibly be included in a list of objectives for such a district:
• To protect and enhance the scenic, aesthetic, and environmental attributes of Hingham Harbor;
• To allow for development opportunities that generate revenue for the Town while enhancing the enjoyment of the Harbor by visitors and Hingham residents.
• To provide a variety of recreational uses serving a broad spectrum of Town residents;
• To provide public restroom facilities for visitors.
• To allow for public/private opportunities that benefit the Town and enhance the visitor experience to the Harbor.
• To protect scenic views to and from the waterfront.
• To ensure that any development or construction that occurs is compatible in scale, mass and appearance with the historical development patterns in adjacent Downtown Hingham.
• To protect and promote harbor-related uses.
• To promote safe and universally accessible access to and along the harbor.
• To enhance physical and programmatic connections between Downtown Hingham and Hingham Harbor
• To promote Hingham Harbor as a visitor destination
The group began the discussion of what uses would be permitted in a Harbor Overlay District. The focus was on broadening the range of uses that would be permitted in the various Town-owned parcels zoned Official and Open Space, for example to allow for marina uses, which are currently prohibited in this District. It was acknowledged that no matter what zoning permitted now or in the future, most of the Town-owned parcels were already very limited in terms of future change or development due to multiple underlying environmental, legal and practical restrictions.
The meeting was adjourned at 9:00 PM.
The next meeting was scheduled for Wednesday January 20, 2010.
Respectfully Submitted, Katharine Lacy