Town of Belchertown, MA
Hampshire County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Meeting of the Town of Belchertown as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Numbering of buildings — See Ch. 23.
Excavations — See Ch. 36.
Subdivision of land — See Ch. 270.
Attachment 1 - Typical Driveway Construction Details Attachment 2 - Street List
[Adopted 11-17-1986 STM by Art. 20; amended 5-12-1997 ATM by Art. 12]

§ 114-1 Purpose.

This article is intended to preserve and enhance the ability of the town's street network to accommodate traffic in a safe and efficient manner and to provide adequate street capacity to serve local development in the town.

§ 114-2 Applicability.

The following curb cuts shall be subject to the requirements set forth herein:
A. 
New access within public ways;
B. 
Physical modification to existing access; and
C. 
Use of new or existing access to serve the building or expansion of a facility that generates a substantial increase in or impact on traffic from properties that abut the public way.

§ 114-3 Permit applications.

A. 
Submission of application. The Board of Selectmen or its designee shall be responsible for issuance and/or denial of curb cut permit applications. A permit applicant shall request issuance of a permit on a standard form furnished by the Board of Selectmen or its designee. The application form shall be filed with the Board of Selectmen or its designee.
B. 
Completeness of permit application. A permit application shall be stamped by the Board of Selectmen or its designee as completed only after the following items have been received and deemed acceptable by the Board of Selectmen or its designee:
(1) 
The standard application form, with all information items appropriately filled out.
(2) 
The applicant, if different from the property owner(s), must provide the Board of Selectmen or its designee with evidence as to consent to the application by the property owner(s).
C. 
Time limits for application processing.
(1) 
Ten-day review period. Review and comment by the Board of Selectmen or its designee will occur within 10 working days of said date of receipt. Comments on deficient items will be returned to the applicant upon completion of review, but not later than 10 days from the stamped date, or the application must be stamped complete by the Board of Selectmen or its designee.
(2) 
Ten-day decision deadline. When an application is deemed complete, the Board of Selectmen or its designee will stamp it as completed, indicating the date of completion. Completed permit applications shall be approved or denied by the Board of Selectmen or its designee within 10 working days of the completion date. The applicant may request or consent to an extension of the ten-day time period for a decision.
D. 
Denial of a permit application. The Board of Selectmen or its designee may deny the issuance of a curb cut permit for the requested use due to the failure of the applicant to provide sufficient roadway improvements when necessary to facilitate safe and efficient roadway operation or where the construction and use of the access applied for would create a condition within the roadway that is unsafe or endangers the public safety and welfare.

§ 114-4 Criteria for review of business, commercial and industrial applications.

A. 
Review of engineering plans. The Board of Selectmen or its designee may require that engineering plans and specifications provide for safe and efficient access which protects the operational integrity of the public way. Plan review and approval shall be based on the Town Department of Public Works standards.
B. 
Permit conditions. The Board of Selectmen or its designee shall condition an access permit to facilitate safe and efficient traffic operations, to mitigate traffic impacts and to avoid or minimize environmental damage during the construction period and throughout the length of the permit. Such conditions may include, but not be limited to:
(1) 
Necessary limitations on turning movements;
(2) 
Restriction on the number of access points to serve the land parcel;
(3) 
Vehicle trip reduction techniques;
(4) 
Necessary and reasonable efforts to maintain existing levels of service;
(5) 
Design and construction of necessary highway improvements by the permittee; and
(6) 
Reimbursement by the permittee of costs of Department of Public Works inspection of roadway improvement work.
C. 
Variance. Where site or traffic conditions do not allow the proposed access to meet Department of Public Works standards, the Board of Selectmen or its designee may vary application of the design standards set forth below on a case-by-case basis upon its finding that:
(1) 
There are no reasonable available alternatives which would allow access in compliance with the standards. In this case, the applicant must commit to provide measures to mitigate impacts to traffic and operational safety which the Board of Selectmen or its designee determines are necessary; or
(2) 
As an alternative procedure for the municipal projects only, the variance is necessary to accommodate an overriding community or public interest, including the avoidance or minimization of environmental impacts.

§ 114-5 Design standards.

A. 
General.
(1) 
The entire area of the driveway approach within the Town way is subject to the placement of bituminous concrete pavement as specified by this article.
(2) 
The holder of this permit shall provide all tools, construction equipment, consumable construction materials and services necessary for the performance of all operations required to accomplish the specified activities.
(3) 
Driveway aprons are not required on existing Town ways that are dirt or gravel roads.
(4) 
The driveway shall not extend onto the traveled way, nor shall the existing gutter line be disturbed.
(5) 
If a ditch exists within the area of the driveway approach, a drainage pipe may be required. The size of the pipe will be a minimum of 12 inches. All pipes will be kept clean by the homeowners and have headwalls.
B. 
Materials of construction.
(1) 
Gravel base. Bank-run gravel, free of frost, rubbish and organic materials.
(2) 
Bituminous concrete, Class I. Binder and dense mix laid in two layers.
C. 
Grading. The area of the driveway approach shall be excavated to a minimum depth of 12 inches. The existing subgrade shall be smoothed, shaped and graded as indicated on the drawing contained herein[1] and/or as directed by the Highway Superintendent. The gravel base material shall be compacted by at least four passes of either a power roller or by pneumatic-tire-type roll.
(1) 
In no instance shall a driveway apron have a pitch toward the roadway greater than one inch per foot for the entire length of the apron (10 feet). Driveways permitted prior to the adoption of this amendment will be exempt from this requirement.
[Added 5-10-1999 ATM by Art. 22]
(2) 
In no instance shall driveways be constructed to allow the discharge of surface runoff into the town's right-of-way.
[Added 5-10-1999 ATM by Art. 22]
[1]
Editor's Note: See the Typical Driveway Construction Details at the end of this chapter.
D. 
Placement of pavement.
(1) 
Bituminous concrete mixture shall be placed over the gravel base in two layers. The bottom layer shall consist of Class I binder mix with a minimum compacted thickness of 1 1/4 inches. The top layer shall consist of Class I dense mix with a minimum compacted thickness of 1 1/4 inches.
(2) 
The mixtures shall have a minimum temperature of 250° F. at the time of placement.
(3) 
The mixtures shall be placed only when the air temperature is above 40° F. and the gravel base is dry and adequately compacted.
(4) 
The mixtures shall be spread by mechanical equipment in strips not less than eight feet wide, unless otherwise accepted by the Highway Superintendent.
(5) 
Areas which are inaccessible by mechanical equipment may be spread by hand.
E. 
Compaction of pavement.
(1) 
Compacting the mixture shall be started as soon as it will bear the weight of the roller without excessive displacement.
(2) 
The mixture shall be compacted with a self-propelled roller wherever possible. Inaccessible areas may be compacted with hand-tampers or vibrating-plate compactors.
F. 
Miscellaneous construction items.
(1) 
On conclusion of the paving operations, the surfaces adjacent to permanent edges shall be dressed by grading and smoothing the earth surfaces to match the edge of the newly laid pavement.
(2) 
Pavement shall be protected from vehicular traffic until the mixture has cooled and hardened.
(3) 
All equipment and excess waste materials shall be removed from the job site immediately upon completion of the work.
G. 
Schedule.
(1) 
The grantee shall notify the Highway Department as far in advance as possible so that an inspection can be made during the construction process. The telephone number is 323-0415.
(2) 
A copy of the approved driveway permit shall be presented to the Inspector of Buildings at the time of application for a building permit.