2018-11-08 / Around Town

Board Delays Decision on Dorms

By James Merolla

Salve Regina University’s request for special-use permits to construct two large dormitories was delayed on Nov. 5 by the Planning Board until its next meeting on Dec. 3.

The board accepted the two packages with details of the new plans as a “communication” only. Copies of several aspects of the plans were distributed to board members, including the architectural plan with elevation.

“Everything is going under the Technical Review Committee,” Town Planner Christine O’Grady said. “That is the staff review. I will get their comments and they will be given to you at the December meeting.”

According to Salve Regina President Jane Gerety’s office, the school has scheduled two informal sessions to introduce the new plans to abutting neighbors, who rigorously opposed the previous proposals. The sessions will be held on campus on Thursday, Nov. 8, from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., and on Wednesday, Nov. 14, from 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.

In another matter a referral to the City Council for Planning Board review, findings and recommendations on a rezoning petition for Newport Project Development Company, LLC was also delayed to the Dec. 3 meeting.

After a public hearing, the board approved the following petitions:

James and Audrey Casey, applicant and owner, to demolish a structure at 185 Coggeshall Avenue in order to rebuild on the footprint.

The approval vote was 5-2. Board member Kim Salerno, who voted against the demo permit, along with Liam Barry, said she wasn’t sure the house, built in 1880, wasn’t historic, even though O’Grady explained more than once that the Preservation Society and its planner had stated there was no historic significance.

Not satisfied, Salerno successfully added a contingency that the Preservation Society submit the finding in writing.

“This is an intact 19th-century house. You don’t have to be a professional to see that; just open your eyes,” said Salerno.

Andrew and Avani McHugh, applicant and owner, to demolish the structure at 2 Wheatland Court in order to build a new house.

Approved and referred to the Zoning Board were the petitions of:

Julie Wright, applicant and owner, for a special-use permit to convert a two-family residence into a residence with one unit for the owner and a second unit into a “resident manager managed seasonal guest house” at 14 Bayview Avenue, contingent upon the owner remaining in residence and renters parking only on site.

Patricia Phelan, owner, for a special-use permit to convert a two-family residence into a residence with one unit for the owner and a second unit as a “resident manager managed seasonal guest house,” at 16 Old Fort Road, contingent upon the owner remaining in residence and renters parking only on site.

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