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Town of Harvard, MA
Worcester County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Added 3-5-1966 ATM by Art. 41; amended 4-13-1968 ATM by Arts. 35 and 36; 3-22-1969 ATM by Art. 40]
Structures shall be erected and premises otherwise developed only as here permitted. Premises shall be developed only for uses as permitted in this Bylaw.
[Amended 3-7-1970 ATM by Art. 45; 3-4-1972 ATM by Art. 45; 3-27-1976 ATM by Art. 27]
Except as otherwise specifically provided in this Bylaw, a dwelling or other main building shall be erected or used only on a lot meeting the standards for a basic lot or for one of the flexible optional alternative lot types hereunder.
A. 
The basic lot is the reference standard for the Bylaw. The access frontage may be less than that for the basic lot only if all lot requirements or one of the optional alternatives hereunder are met. Type 2 (hammerhead), Type 4 (backland), Type 5 (mini-subdivision), and OSC-PRD lots are permitted only by special permit authorized by the Planning Board.
[Amended 3-29-1980 ATM by Art. 29; 3-28-1981 ATM by Art. 23; 3-31-1990 ATM by Art. 18; 4-2-2005 ATM by Art. 32; 4-2-2005 ATM by Art. 37]
(1) 
The foregoing requirement for a special permit shall not apply to a hammerhead or backland lot shown on a plan endorsed by the Planning Board before March 28, 1981. Each building lot shall contain:
(a) 
A compact, contiguous area of buildable land of at least 25% of required lot area which contains at least a portion of the lot width circle required for the particular type of lot.
(b) 
An access from the street to said buildable area.
(c) 
At least 3/8ths of an acre upland, exclusive of land within 50 feet of an inland wetland.
The foregoing provision (c) shall not apply to lots identified or defined of record prior to April 2, 2005, without regard to considerations of adjoining land held in common ownership as provided in Section 6 of Chapter 40A of the General Laws and in the Harvard Protective Bylaw in § 125-2.
(2) 
Except for Type 3 lots, and portions of Type 1 lots located on a permanent turnaround in an approved subdivision, a lot whose permitted frontage is less than that of a basic lot shall have frontage (with) radius of curvature of not less than 175 feet.
B. 
Basic lots. Lots shall have:
(1) 
Land area of at least 1.50 acres; and
(2) 
Lot width of at least 200 feet at 120 feet from the roadway center line; and
(3) 
Access frontage of at least 180 feet.
C. 
Type 1 lots. Lots shall have:
(1) 
Land area of at least 1.50 acres; and
(2) 
Lot width of at least 200 feet at 120 feet from the roadway center line; and
(3) 
Access frontage of at least 120 feet with said frontage on the outside of a street curve and/or adjacent to the access frontage of a Type 2 or Type 3 or Type 4 lot.
[Amended 3-29-1980 ATM by Art. 29]
D. 
Type 2 lots (hammerhead lots).
[Amended 3-26-1977 ATM by Art. 28]
(1) 
Lots shall have:
(a) 
Land area of at least 4.50 acres, which may be reduced to 2.50 acres with the approval of the Harvard Planning Board only if the difference is distributed among adjoining lots as permanent excess over their ordinary requirements, and on the condition that the hammerhead lot as reduced meets all the applicable requirements of the Bylaw, and further that the lots receiving the additional acreage shall meet all applicable requirements of the Bylaw prior to the addition of the new acreage.
[Amended 3-26-1983 ATM by Art. 25; 3-28-1987 ATM by Art. 60; 2-5-1990 STM by Art. 4]
(b) 
Lot width of at least 270 feet; and
(c) 
Access frontage of at least 50 feet; and
(d) 
Access width of at least 35 feet; and
(e) 
Access center-line length no more than 600 feet from the street side line to the edge of a circle contained in the lot and having a diameter of at least the minimum lot width, and with an access center-line radius at least 80 feet.
[Amended 4-2-2005 ATM by Art. 33]
(2) 
All of the provisions of Subsection F, Type 4 lots (backland lots), other than Subsection F(1)(a) through (e) thereof, shall apply to Type 2 lots, modified, however, to substitute the word "hammerhead" for the word "backland."
[Amended 3-25-1978 ATM by Art. 23]
E. 
Type 3 lots (lots on a turnaround). Lots shall have:
(1) 
Land area of at least 1.50 acres; and
(2) 
Lot width of at least 200 feet at 160 feet from the roadway center line; and
(3) 
Access frontage of at least 75 feet, with the frontage only on the circumferential arc of a permanent turnaround in an approved subdivision.
[Amended 3-29-1980 ATM by Art. 29]
F. 
Type 4 lots (backland lots). It is the intent to provide for optional limited development of deep backland lots, subject to special precautions.
(1) 
Lots shall have:
(a) 
Land area of at least 4.50 acres; and
(b) 
Lot width of at least 400 feet; and
(c) 
Access frontage of at least 50 feet; and
(d) 
Access width of at least 35 feet; and
(e) 
Access center-line radius of at least 80 feet; and
(f) 
Access grades, length and location compatible with, in the judgment of the Planning Board, an access driveway and turnaround for vehicles including moving vans, ambulance, fire and police, without substantial hardship, financial or otherwise, in construction. Such a driveway shall have:
[Amended 3-31-1979 ATM by Art. 28]
[1] 
Width of at least 10 feet but shall be cleared to a width of at least 12 feet; and
[Amended 3-31-1979 ATM by Art. 29]
[2] 
Maximum grade of 10% (15% for driveways on lots created before March 29, 1980); and
[Amended 3-29-1980 ATM by Art. 28]
[3] 
Center-line radius of at least 80 feet; and
[4] 
Passing turnouts providing a total width of at least 16 feet along a distance of at least 25 feet, spaced with no more than 300 feet between turnouts and with the first such passing turnout at the driveway connection to the street; and
[Amended 3-31-1984 ATM by Art. 28]
[5] 
A length such that the distance along the driveway center line to each building on the premises will not exceed 1,000 feet from the street side line.
(2) 
The plan for such a lot shall include the statement, "Lot ___ is a backland lot; building is permitted only in accordance with special backland lot provisions of the Protective Bylaw."
(3) 
A copy of the plan for a backland lot shall be included as a part of any application for a building permit. A building permit for a backland lot shall be issued only:
[Amended 3-29-1980 ATM by Art. 27; 3-29-2003 ATM by Art. 37; 3-31-2007 ATM by Art. 22]
(a) 
If the building location is compatible with the distance requirement in Subsection F(1)(f)[5] above; and
(b) 
Upon receipt of a written statement from the Planning Board or its agent indicating that:
[1] 
A satisfactory driveway and turnaround for the purposes of construction as defined in § 125-31D and meeting the foregoing standard and other applicable provisions of this Bylaw have actually been provided; and
[2] 
Where the lot contains area in a W District, a water hole with suitable access has been provided or is already available, within 1,000 access feet of each building on the lot.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Former Subsection F(4), regarding shared driveways, as amended, which immediately followed this subsection, was repealed 3-31-2007 ATM by Art. 23.
G. 
Type 5 lots (lots in a mini-subdivision). It is the intent to provide lots for the optional limited development of backland by means of permanently private access in accordance with the conditions of a special permit authorizing a mini-subdivision (see § 125-34), and whatever other permits may be required.
[Added 3-28-1981 ATM by Art. 25]
(1) 
All of the following conditions shall be met:
(a) 
Lots shall have:
[1] 
Frontage on one side of the mini-subdivision accessway of at least 180 feet; and
[2] 
Lot width at least 320 feet at 180 feet from the center line of the accessway; and
[3] 
Land area at least three acres.
(b) 
Every building shall be located entirely within the compact contiguous area of buildable land defined in this § 125-29, Lot size standards, and entirely within the lot width circle required for this type of lot.
(c) 
Shared driveways are not permitted to lie on, or serve, the lot.
(d) 
Maximum grade of driveways shall be no more than 10%.
(e) 
Driveways on the lot shall have a length no greater than 300 feet, except by special permit authorized by the Planning Board, and then only if the Board finds building locations and lot layout conform to the distance criteria in the following statement of intent. It is the intent that all parts of every building site within the buildable area lie well within, and at most no more than, 1,000 feet of combined lot-plus-access driveway length of fire hose from the side line of a regular street, or from an approved fire pond water takeout, without unduly constraining driveway location within the lot or along its frontage.
(2) 
This (Type 5 lots) subsection and § 125-34, Mini-subdivisions, are intended to be considered together. Type 5 lots shall not be created or used except in accordance with the terms of the special permit(s) authorizing the mini-subdivision and such further conditions as may be imposed by the Planning Board acting in accordance with the provisions of this Bylaw and the Subdivision Control Law.
[Amended 3-27-1982 ATM by Art. 36; 11-16-1987 STM by Art. 12]
H. 
OSC-PRD lots. See § 125-35J, Dimensional requirements.
[Added 3-31-1990 ATM by Art. 18; amended 4-2-2005 ATM by Art. 37]
I. 
Lot shape. In order to limit the degree of irregularity of lot shape, the following maximum build factor specifications shall be used:
[Added 4-2-2005 ATM by Art. 31]
Lot Perimeter (ft.) squared
Actual Lot Area (sq. ft.)
/
    Actual Lot Area (acres)    
Minimum Required Lot Area (acres)
=
Build Factor
(1) 
Type 1 lots shall be subject to a maximum build factor of 30.
(2) 
Type 3 lots and Type 5 lots shall be subject to a maximum build factor of 40.
(3) 
Type 2 lots and Type 4 lots shall be subject to maximum build factor of 60.
(4) 
Lots in an OSC-PRD development shall not be subject to a maximum build factor.
[Amended 3-5-1966 ATM by Art. 42; 4-13-1968 ATM by Art. 38; 3-22-1969 ATM by Arts. 39 and 40; 3-7-1970 ATM by Arts. 45 and 46; 3-6-1971 ATM by Arts. 33 and 34; 3-4-1972 ATM by Art. 48; 3-3-1973 ATM by Arts. 36 and 37; 3-27-1976 ATM by Art. 27; 3-29-1980 ATM by Art. 25; 3-28-1981 ATM by Art. 25; 3-27-1982 ATM by Art. 42]
Except as otherwise specifically provided in this Bylaw, structures and other improvements shall conform to this section and to Article VI (see definition of "section").
[Amended 4-30-1994 ATM by Art. 40]
A. 
Number of structures on a lot. Structures on a lot shall be such that each dwelling or other main building, with its associated accessory structures, can be provided simultaneously with its own lot, with the lot and structures thereon conforming to the Bylaw.
B. 
Floor area ratio. Total building floor area (all levels, all buildings) shall not exceed 10% of the land area of the lot, or 8,000 square feet (whichever is larger). For an institutional use by the Town of Harvard on land located within 2,500 feet of the Town center intersection of Routes 110 and 111, such limit shall be 20% of the land area of the lot.
[Amended 3-28-1987 ATM by Art. 72; 11-30-1999 STM by Art. 12]
C. 
Height. The height of a building, other than a church, above average grade shall be less than three stories and less than 35 feet. For purposes of this provision, silos, and chimneys, ventilators, antennas (except for wireless communications towers and antennas), spires, and similar unoccupied projections above the roof are not included in building height.
[Amended 6-19-1997 STM by Art. 6]
D. 
Visibility. Any sign, fence or landscape plantings, within 20 feet of the street side line and between heights of 2 1/2 and 7 feet, shall be such as not substantially to impair visibility between any driveway and oncoming street traffic.
E. 
Setbacks. Setbacks as follows, except that waterfront structures need not be set back from the waterfront (see also Article II, Existing Lots, Structures and Uses):
(1) 
Any main building shall be located within the compact, contiguous area of buildable land defined in § 125-29, Lot size standards, and for hammerhead and backland lots, within a circle contained in the lot and having a diameter at least the minimum required lot width.
(2) 
Structures other than fences shall be set back from lot boundaries by at least the height of the structure.
(3) 
Except for the Commercial District, structures other than fences, signs, and poles shall be set back from the lot boundaries by at least 20% of required lot width or of (maximum) lot width, whichever is lesser. In the Commercial District such structures shall be set back at least 20 feet from side and rear property lines. If property use is subject to § 125-39, Site standards, such setback shall be at least 60 feet from abutting property in an AR or MR District. For an institutional use by the Town of Harvard, such extended (sixty-foot) setback requirement shall not apply if the existing use of the abutting property would itself be subject to § 125-39, Site standards.
[Amended 4-21-1992 STM by Art. 4; 11-30-1999 STM by Art. 12; 4-5-2016 ATM by Art. 53]
(4) 
Structures other than fences, signs, and poles shall be set back from the center line of any roadway, provision for future roadway, or easement or right-of-way for vehicular access connecting three or more lots to the street, by at least 75 feet. Such setback shall also apply to swimming pools. However, except for swimming pools, such setbacks do not apply for roads serving only lots in an OSC-PRD. Excluding the Commercial District, along arterial streets or if property use is subject to § 125-39, Site standards, such setbacks shall be at least 125 feet. In the Commercial District such structures shall be set back from the front lot line a minimum of 20 feet. However, for an institutional use by the Town of Harvard on land with its access on Route 110 or 111 within 2,500 feet of the Town center intersection of Routes 110 and 111, such extended (one-hundred-twenty-five-foot) setback shall not apply. For purposes of the Bylaw, arterial streets are Ayer Road from the Southerly crossing of Bowers Brook, approximately Station 140, to the Ayer Town line, Massachusetts Avenue from Fairbanks Street to the Boxborough Town line, and Still River Road from Willow Road to the Bolton Town line, except for a distance on Still River Road 1,000 feet north and south of the intersection of Still River Road and Still River Depot Road.
[Amended 3-28-1987 ATM by Arts. 62 and 72; 3-31-1990 ATM by Art. 18; 11-30-1999 STM by Art. 12; 4-2-2005 ATM by Art. 37; 4-5-2016 ATM by Art. 53]
(5) 
For Type 2 lots, structures other than fences, signs, and poles shall be set back from lot boundaries by at least 60 feet, and shall be located within a circle contained in the lot and having diameter at least the minimum required lot width.
[Amended 4-21-1992 STM by Art. 4]
(6) 
For Type 3 lots, structures other than fences, signs, and poles shall be set back from the center line of the turnaround roadway by at least 120 feet.
[Amended 4-21-1992 STM by Art. 4]
(7) 
Buildings shall be set back from W District boundaries of Bare Hill Pond by at least 60 feet.
(8) 
For Type 5 lots, structures other than fences, signs, and poles shall be set back from lot boundaries by at least 70 feet.
[Amended 4-21-1992 STM by Art. 4]
(9) 
The setback requirements for sewage storage or disposal systems shall be as specified in § 125-32C.
[Added 4-21-1992 STM by Art. 4][1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Original Sec. 6.2.6, regarding towers, added 3-26-1988 ATM by Art. 36, as amended 3-27-1993 ATM by Art. 28, was deleted 6-19-1997 STM by Art. 6.
[Amended 3-31-1979 ATM by Art. 27; 3-29-1980 ATM by Art. 27; 3-31-1984 ATM by Art. 29; 3-26-1988 ATM by Art. 34; 4-8-1989 ATM by Art. 36; 3-27-1993 ATM by Art. 25; 3-25-1995 ATM by Art. 30; 3-30-1996 ATM by Art. 29; 12-8-1998 STM by Art. 15; 3-29-2003 ATM by Art. 37; 3-31-2007 ATM by Arts. 22, 23; 4-1-2014 ATM by Art. 43]
For purposes of public safety, any driveway constructed after March 30, 1996, of more than 300 feet in center-line length and providing access from the public way to a main building shall be constructed in accordance with the standards for driveways set forth in the bylaw § 125-39B. No such driveway shall be constructed without site plan approval by the Planning Board at a regularly scheduled public meeting. Construction of all such driveways shall be subject to inspection by the Planning Board's driveway inspector, fees for said inspections to be paid by the applicant as specified in the Planning Board's regulations.
A. 
No driveway which serves two or more building lots of any type, or which serves a hammerhead or a backland lot, or which serves a use for which a special permit or site plan approval is required, may lie on a corridor of land or land area having a width of less than 35 feet and lot frontage of less than 50 feet. This subsection shall apply only to driveways constructed, and to lawfully existing driveways changed after that date to connect with or serve one or more additional lots.
B. 
Shared (common) driveways. To reduce the impact of impervious surfaces and the number of driveway cuts, it is the intent to permit adjoining lots to share a driveway which, except for branches serving individual lots, lies on or near their mutual boundaries subject to a recorded maintenance and snow plowing agreement to ensure that the driveway will be maintained and remain useful for both ordinary and emergency access under all weather conditions, and to ensure that a driveway will not be used as a substitute for a street or as a substitute for mandatory access frontage (see § 125-29). After March 26, 1988, a driveway may be constructed or extended to serve more than one lot only in accordance with a special permit authorized by the Planning Board (see § 125-46, Special permits), subject to all applicable provisions of this bylaw. For a shared driveway serving only single- and two-family residence uses, the driveway site standards in § 125-39B shall apply (see § 125-38, Site plans, and § 125-39, Site standards).
(1) 
At most four lots, of which no more than three shall be hammerhead or backland lots, may be connected to or otherwise share the same driveway. This provision (increasing the number of lots from three to four) will apply only to common drives built or extended by special permit after March 25, 1995. The driveway shall lie entirely within the lots being served. This subsection shall apply only to shared driveways constructed after February 9, 1979, and to lawfully existing driveways changed after that date to connect with or serve one or more additional lots. (Added driveway requirements for hammerhead and backland lots are contained in § 125-29D, Type 2 lots, and § 125-29F, Type 4 lots.)
(2) 
Each branch of a shared driveway shall include a turnaround for vehicles including moving vans, ambulance, fire, and police.
(3) 
(Reserved)
(4) 
A shared driveway shall be considered satisfactory only if:
(a) 
It has been constructed in accordance with the provisions of the special permit and the approved driveway site plan; and
(b) 
There is a recorded maintenance and snow plowing agreement running with the land.
(5) 
Grades on shared driveways constructed or extended after March 26, 1988, shall not exceed 8%.
(6) 
A shared driveway which is constructed, or extended to serve additional lots or uses, after March 26, 1988, shall begin at the street on which the lots served have their access frontage. A driveway shall not be used to provide the lot access frontage required by this bylaw or by the Subdivision Control Law. Where the access to structures or uses provided by the driveway is substantially different than that which would be provided through required lot frontages, the special permit shall not be issued unless the Planning Board finds that the proposed shared driveway and its location are in the public interest.
C. 
Driveway site plan approval. For lots or uses for which a special permit is required by this bylaw as amended, the installation or extension of a driveway to serve a new main building or a new use shall be in accordance with a driveway construction site plan approved by the Planning Board, with advice from the Director of the Department of Public Works with respect to driveway connection to the street. Such driveway construction site plan approval shall expire if the work thereunder is not begun and diligently pursued to completion within two years after issuance.
D. 
For any shared driveway, or any driveway requiring a special permit or site plan approval by the Planning Board, a building permit shall be issued only upon receipt of a written statement from the Planning Board or its agent, indicating that the driveway has been cut-in at the location shown on the plan for the purposes of construction to the lot.
(1) 
For the purpose of actual construction, driveway centerline radii may be sharper than 80 feet, provided that the entire lot is in the AR District and also provided that the entire driveway is laid out and constructed in accordance with the provisions of § 125-39, Site standards, including § 125-39B. However, the driveway center-line radius of curvature may not be less than 40 feet, except in circular turnarounds for cars only. If so constructed or extended, driveway curvature shall be considered "satisfactory" for the purpose of the written statement required prior to issuance of a building permit on a Type 2 or Type 4 lot by the provisions of § 125-29F(3)(b).
(2) 
The Planning Board may consider the construction of a driveway or its extension "satisfactory" for the purpose of said written statement if the location of the driveway is consistent with the special permit or site plan approval; it is suitable for access by construction and safety vehicles to within 100 feet of the building site, provided that there is a (perhaps temporary) turnaround for vehicles including trucks near the building site; all drainage and erosion control measures required for the driveway are in place; and all related measures required by any special permit for construction have been met.
(3) 
A temporary occupancy permit or use of the premises served by such a driveway shall be permitted only upon receipt of a written statement from the Planning Board or its agent, indicating that all drainage, utilities, and erosion control measures are in place; that the driveway is complete up to and including base gravel; and that all related measures required by any special permit or site plan approval have been met.
(4) 
A final occupancy permit or use of the premises for the final lot served by such a driveway is permitted only upon receipt of a written statement from the Planning Board or its agent indicating that a driveway and turnaround have been completed in accordance with the special permit or approved site plan, and that an "as built" has been filed with and approved by the Board or its agent.
E. 
Crossing of W District and inland wetlands. Driveways which are constructed after April 8, 1989, and any existing driveway extended after that date to serve an additional use or main building, shall not alter 5,000 square feet or more of combined W District and/or inland wetlands (all non-overlapping crossings summed). Installation of driveways crossing W and WFH Districts may be subject also to special permit; see §§ 125-25 and 125-26.
F. 
Long driveways. For purposes of public safety, after January 1, 1999, any driveway having or resulting in a center-line length greater than 1,400 feet from the public or private way to any main building served by that driveway may be constructed, or extended to serve another main building more than 1,400 feet from the way, only in accordance with a special permit authorized by the Planning Board (see § 125-46, Special permits), subject to all applicable provisions of this bylaw. No special permit shall be granted under this section unless the Planning Board finds that all dwellings which are served by the driveway have available a water source within 1,400 accessible hose feet which is adequate for fire protection.
(1) 
In determining whether a water source is adequate for fire protection the Planning Board may request the written advice of the Fire Department and will consider the capacity of the water source, the availability and adequacy of access to the water source for fire protection, and provisions for maintenance of the water source.
(2) 
For purposes of this section, a buried cistern containing no less than 10,000 gallons of clean water will be considered an adequate source of water for fire protection purposes to serve one lot, provided that the site does not abut a W District. (See also § 125-39E)
[Amended 3-30-1974 ATM by Art. 40; 3-29-1980 ATM by Art. 25; 3-26-1983 ATM by Art. 26; 3-31-1984 ATM by Art. 27]
[See also §§ 125-1, 125-11A(1), 125-25C, 125-26B and 125-38A(3)]. The intent is to protect the public health and the environment in view of the severity of soil limitations in Harvard for sewage or wastewater disposal, and the high vulnerability of Harvard's wetlands, water absorption areas, water-bearing bedrock fissures, groundwater supply, and individual wells to pollution and contamination. Except for parts of Fort Devens, there is no system of common public sanitary sewers in Harvard. The inhabitants depend for the most part on individual wells for their drinking water, and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future, since no large sand and gravel aquifers have been located in the Town which could serve as a municipal groundwater supply.
[Amended 3-26-1988 ATM by Art. 37; 4-30-1994 ATM by Art. 34]
A. 
Integrity. When land is divided, an existing main building and its existing well for drinking water and its existing sewage system, including pipes, shall remain on one undivided lot.
B. 
Flooding and wetlands. Sewage disposal systems shall be set back from W District boundaries, and from the boundaries of inland wetlands, by at least 100 feet; this setback shall not apply to revision of any preexisting sewage disposal system. Storage areas or tanks for chemicals or petroleum products, or other potential sources of substantial contamination, shall be set back from W District boundaries, and from the boundaries of inland wetlands, by at least 100 feet.
C. 
Setbacks.
(1) 
Intent.
(a) 
In the light of the generally severe soil conditions and the dependency of most inhabitants upon their own wells for drinking water, mentioned above, the intent is to avoid not only the increased danger of pollution or contamination created by the concentration of sewage from several sources into a single small area and thereby avoid vulnerability to larger-scale pollution or contamination of the groundwater and wells in the event of septic system malfunction or failure than in the case of smaller well-separated individual systems, but more particularly, to avoid contamination by the potential leaking of raw sewage from joints in the pipes which collect the sewage, and from cracks potentially resulting from the installation of sewer lines over ridges of ledge located close to the surface which are highly prevalent in Harvard, to spread out sewage disposal installations from one another, to place responsibility for maintenance of each septic system clearly upon the individual owner of the lot it serves, to assure ready identifiability and accessibility of all parts of the system for maintenance by the responsible individual, and to separate the use of land for sewage disposal from the use of adjoining land, streets, and other ways for surface and subsurface drainage.
[Amended 3-26-1988 ATM by Art. 37]
(b) 
In addition, the intent is to avoid the danger of contamination caused by potentially leaking sewage lines, installed under, across, or within the side lines of streets or other ways by private individuals or private entities, thereby subjecting such privately installed lines to potential damage by pressure from the weight of traffic passing over them, especially heavily loaded vehicles, or damage during the installation, repair, or replacement of buried cables or other utility lines.
[Amended 3-26-1988 ATM by Art. 37]
(2) 
Any means for the storage or disposal of sewage or other potential sources of contamination, even if wholly or partly below grade, including absorption areas and provisions for the expansion thereof:
(a) 
Shall be entirely within the lot being served unless such means is owned, operated, monitored, maintained, repaired, and subject to replacement by the Town of Harvard or any other entity all of whose expenditures are subject to authorization by the Harvard Town Meeting.
[Amended 3-25-2000 ATM by Art. 34]
(b) 
Shall be set back from lot boundaries and drainage easements by at least the same distance as required for structures from lot boundaries for the particular lot. However, this setback does not apply to solid wall pipes with leak-tight fittings (including cleanouts) which are part of a domestic sewage system. Setback increases for use or intensity of use which may be specified in the Bylaw shall not apply to such means.
[Amended 3-25-2000 ATM by Art. 34]
(3) 
Backfill and return to grade which are adjacent to an absorption area shall be entirely within the lot.
(4) 
Exceptions, under the provisions of this subsection:
(a) 
The absorption area of a leaching facility for sewage disposal need be set back from a street side line by a minimum of only 25 feet.
(b) 
If the entire leaching facility is below both natural and finish grade, the absorption area of the leaching facility for sewage disposal need be set back from drainage easements and side and rear lot lines by a minimum of only 25 feet.
(5) 
For the purpose of the subsection (only), "street" includes any street, as defined in this bylaw; any provision for any future street; and any easement or right-of-way for vehicular access (including driveway) connecting two or more lots to the street. The term "absorption area" is the plan projection of the bottom of the excavation for the leaching facility as described in Title 5 of the State Environmental Code (1995 or as revised).
[Amended 4-5-2016 ATM by Art. 54]
(6) 
The provisions of this subsection do not apply to the upgrade (as defined by Title 5) of sewage systems for an existing structure or dwelling, or would restrict the execution of a mandatory order of the Board of Health to abate or forestall a threat or nuisance to health.
[Amended 4-5-2016 ATM by Art. 54]
D. 
Communal disposal. In view of the severity of soil limitations in Harvard for sewage or wastewater disposal, and the high vulnerability of Harvard's wetlands, water absorption areas, water-bearing bedrock fissures, limited groundwater supply, and individual wells to pollution and contamination, it is important, in order to protect the drinking water, the public health, and the environment, that any communal or central sewage or wastewater disposal or treatment plants or systems which may be built in Harvard be constructed, owned, operated, monitored, maintained, repaired, and replaced by the Town rather than by private individuals, associations, or other private entities, since such plants or systems typically handle substantial amounts of sewage, require frequent monitoring, have a useful life far shorter than that of the buildings they serve, and pose a substantially greater threat to pollution or contamination of wetlands, water absorption areas, groundwater, and wells in the event of malfunction or failure than do the smaller individual systems serving individual homes.
[Added 3-26-1988 ATM by Art. 38]
(1) 
For these reasons, and to carry out the intent and purposes stated elsewhere in this subsection and § 125-1, Purpose, the use of privately constructed or privately owned, operated, or maintained communal sewage or wastewater disposal or treatment systems, facilities, or plants serving two or more main buildings for commercial or residential use is prohibited pursuant to Section 2A of Chapter 808 of the Acts of 1975, Article 89 of the Amendments to the Massachusetts Constitution amending Article II of the Amendments (known as the Home Rule Amendment), the Zoning Act, and other provisions of law. A building permit shall not be issued for a building to be served by such a privately constructed, or privately owned, operated, or maintained communal system or plant. The prohibitions in the preceding two sentences of this subsection shall not apply, however, to the use by two or more (main or accessory) buildings on the same lot, with Board of Health approval, of a subsurface sewage disposal system which existed on March 26, 1988, nor of such a system if the plan therefor was approved by the Board of Health on or before that date.
[Amended 4-30-1994 ATM by Arts. 34 and 35]
(2) 
No building or use shall be connected to an existing public or communal sewage or waste water disposal system unless the building or use is also served by a public water supply furnished by the Town or by other public entity whose expenditures are subject to authorization by the Harvard Town Meeting.
[Added 4-30-1994 ATM by Art. 35]
(3) 
Exceptions.
[Added 4-30-1994 ATM by Art. 35]
(a) 
The provisions of this Subsection D do not apply to land which is within the boundaries of Fort Devens north of Route 2 and which also lies outside of the one-hundred-year floodplain boundaries of the Nashua River, provided that buildings are connected to the sewage and water supply systems serving Fort Devens.
(b) 
The provisions of Subsection D(1) do not apply to a farming or institutional use (such as schools) where the use is divided among a campus of neighboring buildings.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Original Sec. 6.6, Common open space, added 3-4-1972 ATM by Art. 45 (as Sec. 4.5, FPS Development), as amended, which immediately followed this section, was deleted 3-31-1990 ATM by Art. 18. See now § 125-35, Cluster development for open space conservation.
[Added 3-7-1964 ATM by Art. 28; amended 3-6-1971 ATM by Art. 34; 3-3-1973 ATM by Art. 37]
For a lot situated partly in another municipality, this Bylaw shall apply to the Harvard portion as if the entire lot were in Harvard (see also § 125-21, Permitted uses in AR Districts).
[Added 3-28-1981 ATM by Art. 25]
It is the intent to provide for an optional minor residential subdivision alternative to conventional subdivision development, suitable for some backland tracts. A mini-subdivision is permitted only by special permit (see § 125-46, Special permits), authorized by the Planning Board, subject to the conditions below and in accordance with the provisions of Section 81R of the Subdivision Control Law (G.L. Chapter 41, Section 81R).
A. 
The subdivision access right-of-way (called in this section the "accessway") and the roadway within it may be laid out and built to less exacting standards than the street and roadway of a conventional subdivision, provided that the Planning Board finds that the terrain, soil conditions, and underlying geology are suitable for development with such less thorough engineering and such reduced standards of construction, and provided that:
(1) 
The accessway, and the roadway within it, shall remain permanently a private way which shall not be extended, nor shall it be connected to any other way except where it originates.
(2) 
Lots shall be served by the accessway if and only if ownership of a lot provides membership in a qualified homeowners' association responsible for maintenance and snow removal on the accessway.[1]
[Amended 3-31-1990 ATM by Art. 18]
[1]
Note: See "qualified homeowners' association" in § 125-2, Definitions.
(3) 
There shall be no shared driveways within the subdivision. The "driveway" within the accessway is the roadway serving the subdivision and is not a shared driveway.
(4) 
Lots served by the accessway shall meet all of the requirements for Type 5 lots, except that the special permit may authorize one additional driveway connection, provided that the lot so connected:
(a) 
Meets the standards for a basic lot; and
(b) 
Has at least 180 feet of frontage on an existing street, and also 180 feet of frontage on the accessway; and
(c) 
The driveway is constructed in accordance with the provisions and limitations of § 125-29G, Type 5 lots, and this § 125-34, Mini-subdivisions; and
(d) 
Main buildings and barns are set back at least 70 feet from the side line of the accessway and from the boundaries with Type 5 lots.
(5) 
The accessway provides legal frontage, and thereby access to the street system, for no more than three lots. The following shall not be counted as a lot:
(a) 
Open land (see § 125-2, Definitions).
[Amended 3-31-1990 ATM by Art. 18]
(b) 
The basic lot for which a driveway connection has been permitted under Subsection A(4) above.
(6) 
The accessway shall have:
(a) 
At least 80 feet frontage on a street; and
(b) 
Center-line radius of curvature of at least 80 feet; and
(c) 
Width of at least 40 feet.
(7) 
The entire center-line length of the access roadway, measured to the far side of a terminal turnaround, if any, shall not exceed 700 feet. If there is an access to an approved fire pond having at least 60,000 gallons available drawdown capacity between the street and the furthest individual driveway connection to the roadway, the length above may be increased to 1,000 feet.
B. 
The hearing for the special permit under this § 125-34, Mini-subdivisions, and the hearing for the subdivision under the Subdivision Control Law shall be combined, and, where hearings by other boards or commissions are required, such hearings may be joint with that of the Planning Board. The Planning Board's Rules and Regulations Relative to Subdivision Control[2] shall include provision for:
(1) 
Subdivision access layout and location, and subdivision and individual driveway (roadway) design and construction compatible with safe vehicular access, privacy, and the intent and purposes of the Bylaw.
(2) 
Orderly transfer of the undivided ownership of the accessway and driveway (roadway) within it to the qualified homeowners' association, if there is more than one lot.
[Amended 12-3-2002 STM by Art. 19]
(3) 
Minimum separation of accessways from one another, from street intersections, shared driveways, rights-of-way to more than one lot, and the access necks of hammerhead and backland lots, both at the street and along the length of the accessway.[3]
[3]
Editor's Note: Original Sec. 6.8h, dealing with FPS development, added 3-27-1982 ATM by Art. 36, was deleted 11-16-1987 STM by Art. 12.
[2]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 130, Subdivision Control, Art. V, Mini-Subdivision.
[Added 3-29-2003 ATM by Art. 32[1]]
This section establishes and regulates Open Space and Conservation Planned Residential Development (OSC-PRD). Development under this section is pursuant to a special permit granted by the Planning Board.
A. 
Purpose and intent. The purpose and intent of the OSC-PRD provision is to permit high-quality residential development that preserves open space, water resources, wetlands, habitat, prime agricultural land, scenic landscapes and natural features, reduces infrastructure and site development cost, and promotes a diversity of housing opportunities within the Town, while respecting and enhancing neighborhoods, and promoting attractive standards of appearance and aesthetics consistent with Town character.
(1) 
A further purpose of the OSC-PRD provision is to reduce the anticipated negative fiscal impact on the Town associated with conventional residential development.
(2) 
The OSC-PRD provision is designed to encourage the siting of homes in a manner that clusters units together in well-designed village settings, on buildable portions of the site, as a distinct alternative to the more arbitrary siting associated with lot by lot development typically reflected in plans submitted pursuant to Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 41, Sections 81K through 81GG, the Subdivision Control Law.
B. 
Applicability. The Planning Board may grant a special permit for an OSC-PRD on an Agricultural-Residential (AR) zoned tract of land that is at least 4.5 acres of land area, with definite boundaries ascertainable from a recorded or registered deed(s) or recorded or registered plan(s). Existing public and private ways need not constitute boundaries of the tract, but the area within such ways shall not be counted in determining tract size.
(1) 
Permitted uses in Open Space and Conservation Planned Residential Development. Permitted uses include the following:
(a) 
Single-family detached dwellings.
(b) 
Attached units, not to exceed 6 or more units in any single building.
(c) 
Agriculture and horticultural uses including but not limited to orchards, vineyards, forestry, farming for fruits and vegetables.
(d) 
Open space.
(e) 
Trails.
(f) 
Passive recreation.
(g) 
Educational and religious uses and other uses not mentioned above which are exempt from regulation by zoning under Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 40A, Section 3.
(h) 
Accessory residential/recreational uses (e.g., tennis court, pool, playground).
C. 
Requirements and process for approval. An applicant who is the owner (or with the permission of the owner) of a 4.5 acre or larger tract of land in the AR District as described above, may submit to the Planning Board a plan and application for a special permit for an OSC-PRD in accordance with the provisions of this section, excepting the building lots or lot shown on such plans from the lot area and other dimensional requirements specified in other sections of this Bylaw. While a subdivision plan is not required to be submitted in conjunction with the provisions of this section, in the event that a subdivision plan is being proposed by the applicant, such plan shall be submitted to the Planning Board in accordance with the Subdivision Rules and Regulations of the Planning Board.[2]
(1) 
Submittal requirements. Prior to the granting of a special permit pursuant to this section, a duly submitted application for said special permit shall be submitted together with a site plan to the Planning Board, in accordance with § 125-38, Site plans, of the Bylaw, and any Site Plan Rules and Regulations adopted by the Planning Board. For purposes of this Bylaw, a landscape architect, architect, land surveyor, and professional engineer must participate in the preparation of such site plan, which shall include the following:
(a) 
The location of the proposed development.
(b) 
The size of the site in acres.
(c) 
The total number of the proposed buildings and/or lots, and the size of each in square feet.
(d) 
The acreage and proposed use of permanent open space.
(e) 
A statement on the disposition or manner of ownership of the proposed open space.
(f) 
The lots or areas which are to be used as building areas or lots, and the lots or areas which are to remain as permanent open space.
(g) 
Lines showing yard and setbacks as required by this Bylaw, within which dwellings or structures must lie.
(h) 
Sufficient detail of proposed built and natural features as described in § 125-35D and § 125-35E to enable the Planning Board to make the required determinations of § 125-35C(3).
(i) 
A landscape preservation plan sheet(s) to be included with the site plan, reflecting the existing, natural features to be preserved and proposed landscape features and details.
(2) 
Submittal of preliminary plan. In order to assist the Planning Board in making a determination, pursuant to § 125-35C(3)(d), that an OSC-PRD is superior to a conventional subdivision development, an applicant must submit a plan of the required form and content standards as a "Preliminary Plan" in accordance with the Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 41, Section 81S and the "Rules and Regulations of the Harvard Planning Board Relative to Subdivision Control." Such plan, although not a formal subdivision plan filing, and submitted for conceptual purposes only, shall include a perimeter survey prepared by a registered land surveyor, location of wetlands delineated by a wetlands specialist, and topography based upon the most recent United States Geological Survey map. The applicant shall demonstrate to the satisfaction of the Board that a subdivision plan, if formally filed, would be buildable without reliance on significant waivers of the subdivision regulations, and without extraordinary engineering techniques. Further, the applicant must demonstrate and provide sufficient evidence, to the satisfaction of the Planning Board, that each of the lots reflected on the "Preliminary Plan" submitted are capable of being served by an individual sewage system that would comply with the regulations of the Board of Health.
(3) 
Approval criteria. After notice and a public hearing in accordance with Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 40A, Section 9, 11, and 15 and after following the procedure outlined in this Bylaw, the Planning Board may grant such a special permit with any conditions, safeguards, and limitations, if it determines:
(a) 
That the application form and content referred to in § 125-35C(1), herein is properly completed.
(b) 
That the site plan referred to in § 125-35C(1) is properly completed.
(c) 
That all the other requirements of this Section and Bylaw are fully met.
(d) 
That the design and layout of the proposed OSC-PRD is superior to a conventional subdivision plan in preserving open space for conservation and recreation; that it preserves natural features of the land, and allows more efficient provision of streets, utilities and other public services; and, that it provides a high degree of design quality, based on the criteria and considerations enumerated herein in § 125-35E.
(e) 
That if development of single family homes is being proposed on separate lots, as opposed to a clustered village concept that is a major objective of this Bylaw, exemplary site planning is demonstrated, and other determinations in § 125-35D, are met.
[2]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 130, Subdivision Control.
D. 
Design criteria. In its consideration of an OSC-PRD, the Planning Board shall give particular attention to, and shall use as a basis for its decision, all of the following:
(1) 
Lots, streets, off-street parking, sidewalks, pathways and buildings which achieve the harmonious integration of the proposed development with surrounding properties.
(2) 
Overall layout and design that achieves the best possible relationship between the proposed development and the land under consideration.
(3) 
Appropriately sized and configured open spaces for active or passive recreation, and where possible, links to adjoining common open space areas.
(4) 
Protection of natural features such as streams, mature trees or clusters of trees, rock outcrops, bluffs, slopes, high points, views, vistas, and historic or archeological features.
(5) 
Provision of large buffer areas, composed of existing vegetation, to surround building groupings and building envelope areas, to discourage site clearing and encourage preservation of existing land cover and mature vegetation.
(6) 
Provision of access to open spaces for the physically handicapped, elderly, and children.
(7) 
Use of open spaces for preserving, enhancing, or providing scenic vistas; preservation and protection of historic resources.
(8) 
Adequacy of provisions for public safety, protection from fire and flood, and maintenance of public facilities, streets, utilities, and open space.
E. 
Design quality. Project design for an OSC-PRD shall be reviewed by the Planning Board with input from Town officials, any review consultant(s), and others as appropriate. This section is to be interpreted as guidelines to be applied flexibly by the Planning Board as appropriate to the situation under review, including factors such as foundation and soil characteristics and other extraordinary site constraints. While these guidelines apply to all site improvements and buildings and structures, it is not the intent of this section to prescribe or proscribe use of materials or methods of construction regulated by the state building code, but rather to enhance the appearance of the built environment within an OSC-PRD.
(1) 
Building and structure placement. The placement of buildings and structures in an OSC-PRD should:
(a) 
Provide for maximum buffering of buildings and structures to adjoining properties either within the proposed OSC-PRD or to adjacent land uses. Such buffering includes, but is not limited to: landscaping, screening materials, natural barriers, fencing, and related measures.
(b) 
Preserve attractive views from major vantage points, especially from major thoroughfares and residential neighborhoods.
(c) 
Avoid regular spacings and building placements that will be viewed as continuous walls from important vantage points, which may be identified in an OSC-PRD pre-application conference.
(d) 
Avoid the placement of structures, common area facilities, and private space related to individual units in a manner that eclipses views or access to open space areas described in § 125-35K.
(e) 
Ensure that 10% of all units are fully accessible to the disabled and that a majority of units have at least one accessible entrance and bathroom on a first floor.
(2) 
Building massing/articulation. The massing/articulation of buildings should:
(a) 
Avoid unbroken building facades longer than 50 feet.
(b) 
Provide human-scale features, especially for pedestrians and at lower levels.
(c) 
Avoid unarticulated and monotonous building facades and window placement.
(3) 
Building appearance and treatment. To the extent not inconsistent with or pre-empted by the state building code, the following should be considered as applicable:
(a) 
Materials and building treatments that reduce the visibility of the buildings from distant vantage points, and that are compatible with backgrounds and surroundings.
(b) 
Materials and colors compatible with other quality buildings of similar scale in the vicinity.
(c) 
Green building technologies and materials, wherever possible, to minimize adverse environmental impacts.
(4) 
Roofline articulation. The design of buildings should:
(a) 
Provide a variety of building heights and varied roofline articulation that stresses New England vernacular architecture.
(b) 
Locate taller buildings away from major streets, abutting and off-site single-family residential areas and homes.
(5) 
Landscaping. Landscaping criteria are as follows:
(a) 
All open areas, exclusive of areas to remain in an existing natural state within an OSC-PRD, should be landscaped in an appropriate manner, utilizing both natural and man-made materials such as indigenous grasses, trees, shrubs, and attractive paving materials and outdoor furniture.
(b) 
Deciduous trees should be placed along new and existing streets and ways. Outdoor lighting should be considered in the landscaping plan, and should be designed to complement both man-made and natural elements of the OSC-PRD and adjacent areas. Appropriate methods (such as cutoff shields) should be used to avoid glare, light spillover onto abutting property.
(c) 
Intensive, high-quality landscaping or preservation of existing vegetation should be provided within the OSC-PRD where it abuts major streets, existing residential areas, and along internal drives.
(d) 
Preservation of existing vegetation or tree-lined areas should be maintained.
(e) 
Parking areas and lots should use landscaping and terracing to break up large areas of pavement and to enhance residential flavor and appearance; trees and shrubs should be used to the maximum extent feasible.
(f) 
Features such as shade trees, forest trees, and expansive planting areas should be preserved and/or introduced along external property boundaries and on the perimeter of the OSC-PRD itself, to buffer the site from adjoining parcels.
(6) 
Pedestrian amenities and recreation. In this category, the design should include the following components/characteristics, appropriate to the land under consideration.
(a) 
Accessible pedestrian-oriented features such as walkways, pergolas, outdoor sitting plazas, landscaped open space, drop-off areas, and recreational facilities should be emphasized.
(b) 
Tree-lined or otherwise appropriately landscaped pedestrian paths and walkways should link together areas designated as open space within the site, and wherever possible, to adjoining public areas.
(c) 
Passive and active recreational facilities should be of a size and scale appropriate for the number of units proposed.
F. 
Utilities. To the maximum extent feasible, all utilities should be located underground.
G. 
Signage. At each principal entrance to the site, one sign only shall be permitted; it should be of a maximum signboard area of three square feet, with content limited to identifying the name and address of the development.
(1) 
Within the development, signs, not to exceed two square-feet each, of a number and location to be approved as part of the OSC-PRD, may be permitted for the sole purposes of orientation and direction, and of identifying common building spaces.
H. 
Base development density. The maximum number of dwelling units per acre permitted in an OSC-PRD shall not exceed one unit per 1.50 acres of land area, and in no event exceed the maximum number of lots or dwelling units obtainable under a conventional subdivision plan for the land area under consideration, except as provided in § 125-35I.
I. 
Development incentive.
(1) 
The Planning Board may authorize an increase in lots or dwelling units up to a maximum of 25% above that allowed under § 125-35H of this Bylaw, provided the following conditions are met:
(a) 
The applicant proposes a significant increase in open space above 50%, and preserves significant natural resources, in the opinion of Planning Board.
(b) 
There is permanent preservation of land devoted or set aside for agricultural use or other unique preservation strategy, including preservation of historic structures or barns, or other special features of the built environment.
(If (a) and (b) above are found to be satisfied, in the opinion of Planning Board, it may authorize a 5% increase in applicable base density.)
(c) 
The applicant proposes public improvements or amenities that result in substantial benefit to the Town and the general public, provided:
[1] 
There are significant improvements to the environmental quality or condition of the site and its surrounding areas, including a decrease in stormwater runoff from what would otherwise result from a conventional subdivision plan.
[2] 
There are provisions contributing to off-site public facilities or environmental improvements beyond those necessary to mitigate the impacts of the proposed development.
(If (c) above is found to be satisfied, in the opinion of Planning Board, it may authorize a 5% increase in applicable base density.)
(d) 
The applicant proposes attached dwellings that include a maximum of two bedrooms per unit, and are developed in the character of a New England Village style of architecture.
(If (d) above is found to be satisfied, in the opinion of Planning Board, it may authorize a 5% increase in applicable base density.)
(e) 
Housing units for senior citizens and persons aged 55 years and over housing is provided.
(If (e) above is found to be satisfied, in the opinion of Planning Board, it may authorize a 5% increase in applicable base density.)
(f) 
The applicant sets aside 10% or more of lots or dwelling units on the site for "affordable housing" for purchase or rental by those with households of low or moderate incomes. Such units must count toward the Town's Subsidized Housing Inventory, and be in accordance with the provisions of 760 CMR 45.00, as may be amended. The Planning Board shall review and approve the actual percentage distribution of qualifying low versus moderate income units.
(If (f) above is found to be satisfied, in the opinion of Planning Board, it may authorize a 20% increase in applicable base density.)
(2) 
Standards for on-site affordable units. Housing units set aside as affordable housing, as described in § 125-35I(1)(f), shall have a gross floor area comparable to market-rate units and shall be integrated into the development and not grouped together. When viewed from the exterior, the affordable units shall be indistinguishable from the market-rate units in the same development. The developer shall provide adequate guarantee, acceptable to the Planning Board, to ensure the continued availability and affordability of the units in perpetuity; such guarantee must include recorded deed restrictions, recorded restrictive covenants relative to equity limitation, or other acceptable forms of guarantees. No more than 80% of the building permits for the market-rate units shall be issued within an OSC-PRD until construction has commenced on all the affordable units; no more than 80% of the certificates of occupancy for the market-rate units shall be issued until all of the certificates of occupancy for the affordable units have been issued.
J. 
Dimensional requirements. The following provisions shall apply:
(1) 
The Planning Board may waive the minimum requirements for frontage and/or yard requirements that would normally be applicable to land within the AR District in order to achieve maximum open space area, and may permit more than one single or two-family dwelling be located on a lot in an OSC-PRD, except as provided below.
(2) 
The parcel proposed for development must have a minimum of 50 feet of frontage on a public way or private way which is open to the public.
(3) 
Attached units shall contain no more than six units in a single building.
(4) 
The minimum distance between clusters of multiple unit dwellings, shall be 50 feet.
(5) 
A minimum width of 150 feet of green area shall be established and maintained between any property adjacent to the OSC-PRD and the nearest dwelling unit or units in the OSC.
[Amended 4-2-2005 ATM by Art. 34]
(6) 
The minimum setback from internal roads shall be 25 feet.
(7) 
The maximum height of proposed buildings shall be 35 feet, and shall not exceed 2 1/2 stories.
(8) 
Except as provided in this Bylaw, any lot in an OSC-PRD shall comply with any other dimensional requirements of the zoning district in which it is located.
K. 
Common open space. A minimum of 50% of the OSC-PRD parcel shall be devoted to contiguous open space, completely devoid of any structure, parking, loading and unloading space, accessways thereto, or as private yards, patios, or gardens for the exclusive or principal use by residents of individual dwelling units. To the greatest extent possible, such open space shall be left in its undisturbed natural condition or shall be appropriate in size, shape, dimension, location, and character to assure its use as a conservation area, and where appropriate, a recreational area, and be a visual and natural amenity for the development and the Town. The common open space described herein is in substitution of and supersedes any other reference to common open space that may be described elsewhere in the Bylaw.
(1) 
Open space criteria. The following criteria define open space, and open space that is considered usable within an OSC-PRD parcel:
(a) 
No more than 25% of common open space in an OSC-PRD shall be wetlands.
(b) 
Unless approved by the Planning Board, common open space shall not be considered usable if the slope of the finished grade exceeds 33%.
(c) 
Unless approved by the Planning Board, the nearest part of the common open space shall not be more than 300 feet in distance from the nearest point of any building that it is proposed to serve.
(d) 
No common open space shall be considered usable unless it is compact and contiguous and has no dimension of less than 50 feet.
(e) 
All usable open space shall be open to the sky and pervious.
L. 
Open space conveyance.
(1) 
The common open space shall be conveyed in the following ways as approved by the Planning Board:
(a) 
To a corporation or trust comprising a homeowners association whose membership includes the owners of all lots or units contained in the development. The developer shall include in the deed to owners beneficial rights in said open land, and shall grant a perpetual open space restriction to the Town of Harvard or a non-profit corporation or organization over such land to insure that it be kept in an open state and not be built upon for residential use, or developed for accessory uses such as parking or roadways. Such restriction shall be in such form and substance as the Planning Board shall prescribe, and may contain such additional restrictions on development and use of the open space as the Planning Board may deem appropriate.
(b) 
To a non-profit organization, the principal purpose of which is the conservation of open space. The developer or non-profit organization shall grant an open space restriction as set forth above.
(c) 
To the Town for a park or open space use, subject to the approval of the Select Board, for management by the Park and Recreation Commission if a park, otherwise by the Conservation Commission, with a clause insuring that it be maintained as open space.
[Amended 10-22-2018 STM by Art. 2]
(2) 
Multiple conveyance. To provide flexibility, and when deemed in the public interest, the Planning Board may approve more than one organization to accept the open space conveyance, particularly when it is appropriate that a major portion of such land be conveyed to the Town or a non-profit conservation organization, and another portion of such land is more appropriately conveyed to an owners association.
M. 
Passageways. Private roadways and common driveways shall be allowed in OSC-PRD parcels. While roadway surface widths may be narrower than widths associated with a traditional subdivision, the durability of passageway surfaces and subsurfaces must be comparable to those in a conventional subdivision.
[Amended 4-2-2005 ATM by Art. 34]
(1) 
Criteria for passageways. The following criteria shall guide the development of these passageways:
(a) 
Cleared widths for traveled ways (excluding on-street parking spaces and passing turnouts) shall not be more than 20 feet or less than 12 feet. A cleared height of not less than 16 feet above the entire passageway shall be established and maintained.
(b) 
Drainage and surface runoff from all passageways must be suitably accommodated by an approved drainage system, using best management practices.
(c) 
All OSC-PRD plans shall specify that such passageways will not be dedicated to the Town, but are to remain private ways; all deeds or other instruments conveying any portion of land or structure in an OSC-PRD containing such a passageway(s), shall specify that such passage way(s) are and shall remain private way(s) in perpetuity; and
N. 
Site improvements. Site improvements specific to an OSC-PRD are listed below. To assist the Planning Board's evaluation of site changes and improvements from any OSC-PRD plan, the applicant shall submit said plan to the Town's Conservation Commission and Board of Health for review and recommendations to the Planning Board.
(1) 
Water supply. Each lot and the development in its entirety shall be served by water supply systems.
(2) 
Sewage disposal. Privately owned and maintained on-site sewage disposal or treatment systems may be approved to serve buildings and lots in an OSC-PRD, if owned, maintained, operated, and monitored by a residents association, notwithstanding the provisions of § 125-32D of this Bylaw, if such treatment facility or system is approved by the Board of Health and in compliance with the requirements of Title 5, 310 CMR 15.00, or approved in accordance with the requirements of 314 CMR 5.00 (the Ground Water Discharge Permit Program). An approved system may be located on land owned in common by the owners of the building lots or residential units within the development.
(3) 
Parking. Unless otherwise approved by the Planning Board, a minimum and maximum of 1.5 off-street parking spaces shall be provided for each unit, exclusive of spaces within garages. The Planning Board may also approve, based upon the nature of the development proposed and exclusive of the 1.5 parking space ratio provided, areas for visitor parking.
(4) 
Storm runoff control. The applicant shall demonstrate that, as compared with the situation that would exist on the site without the development, no phase of the proposed OSC-PRD will result in an increase in the peak rate of storm runoff at the parcel boundary for the OSC-PRD as a whole for the 25-, 50- and 100-year design storms, and that there will be no net loss in flood storage capacity for the 100-year design storm. In making such determinations, any state or local orders or requirements of the Wetlands Protection Act or the Town's Wetlands Protection Bylaw[3] shall be assumed in the calculations of runoff and flood storage without the OSC-PRD, but alternative forms of development shall not be assumed.
[3]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 119, Wetlands Protection.
(5) 
On-site runoff and erosion control. The applicant shall demonstrate that any adverse existing off-site runoff and erosion conditions or off-site runoff and erosion conditions which would result from the development of the OSC-PRD, are fully identified and that workable and acceptable mitigation measures are proposed as part of the submission of a final plan.
O. 
Residents association. In order to ensure that common open space and common facilities within the development will be properly maintained, each OSC-PRD shall have a residents association, which shall be in the form of a corporation, non-profit organization, or trust, established in accordance with appropriate State law by a suitable legal instrument or instruments properly recorded with the Worcester County Registry of Deeds or registered in the Worcester County Registry District of the Land Court. As part of the final OSC-PRD site plan submission, the applicant shall supply to the Planning Board copies of such proposed instruments, which shall at a minimum provide the information required by said OSC-PRD submission requirements, § 125-35L of this Bylaw, and Site Plan Rules and Regulations in effect at the time of final submission.
(1) 
Responsibilities of the residents association. Said legal instruments pertaining to the residents association shall specify that the residents association shall be solely responsible for all related improvements, and all costs associated with the operation of the development, including:
(a) 
Roadway maintenance.
(b) 
Snow-plowing.
(c) 
Maintenance of street lighting and on-site improvements and utilities.
P. 
Amendments without public hearing. Following the granting of a special permit pursuant to this Section, the Planning Board may, upon application and for good cause shown, without public hearing, amend the OSC-PRD plan solely to make changes in lot lines shown on the plan, which lot lines are not part of the perimeter of the site, or other minor engineering changes, provided, however, that no such amendment shall:
(1) 
Grant any reduction in the size or change in location of the open space as provided in the permit;
(2) 
Grant any change in the layout of the ways as provided in the permit;
(3) 
Increase the number of lots or units as provided in the permit; or
(4) 
Decrease other dimensional requirements of any lot below the minima permitted by the approval of the initial site plan and special permit.
Q. 
Amendments requiring public hearing. Any proposed change to an existing OSC-PRD special permit considered substantial by the Planning Board, shall require notice and a formal public hearing in accordance with Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 40A, Section 9, 11, and 15 and an amendment to the special permit decision made pursuant to this section.
[1]
Editor's Note: This article also repealed former § 125-35, Cluster development for open space conservation, added 3-31-1990 ATM by Art. 18, as amended.