Town of Southborough, MA
Worcester County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
No land in any district shall hereafter be used or occupied and no building or structure shall hereafter be occupied, used or erected or the use of buildings and land altered except as set forth in the following Schedule of Use Regulations or as specifically regulated or provided otherwise under other sections hereof, provided that the accessory uses and buildings not enumerated in the schedule but necessarily or customarily incidental to a principal use, including the signs otherwise allowed, shall be deemed to fall into the same category as such principal use. Streets and easements for public services are a permitted use in all districts, except the Wetland and Floodplain Districts.
Where an activity may be classified under more than one use listed in the Schedule of Use Regulations, the more specific classification shall apply, and if equally specific, the more restrictive classification shall govern.
[Amended 4-8-1985 ATM by Art. 37; 4-14-1986 ATM by Arts. 5, 25, 36, 37, 38, 40, 46 and 49; 4-30-1990 ATM by Arts. 48 and 50; 4-8-1991 ATM by Art. 52; 4-12-1993 ATM by Art. 43]
A. 
No building or structure shall be constructed and no building, structure or land or part thereof shall be used for any purpose or in any manner other than for one or more of the uses hereinafter set forth as permitted in the district in which such building, structure or land is located or set forth as permissible by special permit in said district and so authorized.
B. 
Further, no building shall be constructed and no building, structure or land or any part thereof shall be used and no lot shall be changed in size or shape unless in conformity with the dimensional regulations set forth for each district.
C. 
The following notes apply to all districts:
(1) 
All uses and buildings for which off-street parking is required, other than one- and two-family dwellings, shall be subject to the site plan review and approval by the Planning Board, as provided in § 174-10.
(2) 
Not more than one principal permitted use shall be located on any lot, provided that a multiple occupancy building used for the same category of use, such as retail sales and services, light manufacturing or offices in a business district or Industrial Park District shall be deemed to be in a single principal permitted use. The Board of Appeals may, by special permit, allow several different uses if otherwise permitted in the district or several buildings on the same lot if such uses or buildings are deemed to be compatible, meet the requirements of § 174-9 and result in improved circulation and land use patterns.
(3) 
For uses subject to a special permit:
(a) 
Refer also to § 174-9, Special permit requirements;
(b) 
References to a special permit being required for piggeries, dog kennels, riding stables and the raising of carnivorous fur-bearing animals are effective to the extent that such activities are not allowed by applicable state law or regulation;
(c) 
References to a special permit being required for riding stables are effective to the extent that such activities are not allowed by applicable state law or regulation;
(d) 
References to a special permit being required for a private school, nursery or kindergarten are effective to the extent that such activities are not allowed by applicable state law or regulation;
(e) 
References to a special permit being required for multifamily dwellings are effective if such dwellings are within a major residential development created with an optional special permit as specified in § 174-13.2A, and not for multifamily dwellings within a major residential development created by right as specified in § 174-13.2A; and
(f) 
References to a special permit being required for major residential development are effective if a major residential development is created with an optional special permit as specified in § 174-13.2A, and not for a major residential development created by right as specified in § 174-13.2A.
(4) 
(Reserved)
(5) 
Any lot created after April 8, 1996, in any zoning district except the BV Business Village District shall contain a minimum lot area of 20,000 square feet exclusive of wetlands as defined in the Wetlands Protection Act, MGL c. 131, § 40. Lots created under the Major Residential Development Bylaw (§ 174-13.2) flexible development provision that are less than 20,000 square feet shall be entirely exclusive of wetlands.
[Added 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 54]
[Added 4-12-1993 ATM by Art. 43]
A. 
Permitted uses are as follows:
(1) 
Park, open space, noncommercial recreation, fishing and hunting where legally permitted, wildlife management and conservation area.
(2) 
Agriculture, horticulture, floriculture or viticulture, but excepting, to the extent permitted pursuant to applicable state law and regulation, piggeries and fur farms.
[Amended 10-7-2013 STM by Art. 9]
(3) 
Temporary nonresidential structure accessory to farming, fishing or similar permitted use of the land.
(4) 
Signs as permitted under § 174-11.
(5) 
Roadside stand.
B. 
Uses by special permit are as follows:
(1) 
Private garage or parking for more than three cars or one truck or other commercial vehicle. (Note: For uses subject to a special permit, refer also to § 174-9, Special permit requirements.)
C. 
Uses prohibited. All uses which are not listed above, legally nonconforming or otherwise allowable by the provisions of the zoning regulations are prohibited. (Note: New or expanded uses required by the Metropolitan District Commission or other public agency having jurisdiction there for the purposes of water supply, drainage and land or water conservation are permissible in the Conservation District.)
D. 
The operation of any marijuana establishment as defined in MGL c. 94C, § 1, including without limitation a marijuana cultivator, marijuana testing facility, marijuana product manufacturer, marijuana retailer or any other type of licensed marijuana facility is prohibited in all zoning districts of the Town. This prohibition shall not apply to the sale, distribution or cultivation of marijuana for medical purposes, licensed under Chapter 369 of the Acts of 2012 and currently permitted in the Town of Southborough.
[Added 4-25-2017 ATM by Art. 32]
[Added 4-12-1993 ATM by Art. 43]
A. 
Permitted uses are as follows:
(1) 
All uses permitted in the Conservation District.
(2) 
One-family houses.
(3) 
Religious uses, public or nonprofit school.
(4) 
Public or nonprofit library, museum, art gallery or a similar cultural institution.
(5) 
Town or other government building.
(6) 
Renting of rooms or furnishing of board to not more than four persons by a resident family in a one-family house.
(7) 
Mobile home or travel trailer used as a dwelling for 30 days or fewer in a year.
(8) 
Construction of private garage or private parking for not more than three vehicles, that is accessory to a permitted principal use and on the same lot as such use. One vehicle may be a truck or other commercial vehicle.
[Amended 4-8-2002 ATM by Art. 67; 4-15-2003 ATM by Art. 61]
(9) 
Customary home occupation.
(10) 
Parking in a garage or out of doors for employees, customers, clients, occupants or students, accessory to a permitted principal use and on the same lot as such use.
B. 
Uses by special permit are as follows:
(1) 
Accessory apartment.
(2) 
Boat livery, cemetery, children's camp, golf course, private nonprofit membership club, public utility, riding stable, ski tow.
(3) 
Hospital, nursing home, home for the aged.
(4) 
Private school, nursery or kindergarten.
(5) 
Veterinarian, animal hospital, dog kennel.
(6) 
Conversion of a one-family house in existence for two years or longer to a two-family dwelling, on a lot with a minimum of 15,000 square feet.
(7) 
Mobile home or travel trailer used as a dwelling for more than 30 days in a year.
(8) 
Multifamily housing for the elderly, owned by a public or a nonprofit community housing organization.
(9) 
Other multifamily dwellings if within a major residential development. (Note: Special permit from the Planning Board.)
(10) 
Major residential development. (Note: Special permit from the Planning Board.)
(11) 
Office-type trailer or mobile home used as business quarters.
(12) 
Private garage or private parking for more than three vehicles, that is accessory to a permitted principal use and on the same lot as such use.
[Amended 4-8-2002 ATM by Art. 67; 4-15-2003 ATM by Art. 61]
(13) 
Adaptive Reuse of Historic Buildings Bylaw (Note: special permit from Planning Board).
[Added 4-25-2017 ATM by Art. 29]
C. 
Prohibited uses. All uses which are not listed above, legally nonconforming or otherwise allowable by the provisions of the zoning regulations are prohibited.
D. 
Development standards are as follows:
(1) 
Minimum lot area: 43,560 square feet; minimum 20,000 square feet exclusive of wetlands.
[Amended 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 54]
(2) 
Minimum frontage: 150 feet.
(3) 
Minimum setbacks:
(a) 
Front: 35 feet.
(b) 
Rear: 50 feet; 10 feet for accessory buildings and swimming pools.
(c) 
Side: 25 feet; 10 feet for accessory buildings and swimming pools.
(d) 
Other street: 35 feet.
(4) 
Maximum height: 35 feet, 2 1/2 stories (17 feet, one story for accessory buildings).
[Amended 4-8-2002 ATM by Art. 68]
(5) 
Maximum floor area ratio: 0.18.
(6) 
In the RA District, no lot shall be considered a building lot unless the center of a seventy-five-foot diameter circle can be passed along a continuous line from the lot frontage to the rear yard setback without the circumference intersecting any lot lines and unless the center of the seventy-five-foot diameter circle can be passed along 40% of the required frontage without the circumference intersecting any side or rear lot line. This Subsection D(6) shall not apply to an existing lot or existing dwelling for which a building permit has been issued as of the effective date of adoption of this Subsection D(6), or to any alteration, extension or structural change thereto.
[Added 4-10-1995 ATM by Art. 47; amended 4-12-1999 ATM by Art. 64]
E. 
The operation of any marijuana establishment as defined in MGL c. 94C, § 1, including without limitation a marijuana cultivator, marijuana testing facility, marijuana product manufacturer, marijuana retailer or any other type of licensed marijuana facility is prohibited in all zoning districts of the Town. This prohibition shall not apply to the sale, distribution or cultivation of marijuana for medical purposes, licensed under Chapter 369 of the Acts of 2012 and currently permitted in the Town of Southborough.
[Added 4-25-2017 ATM by Art. 32]
[Added 4-12-1993 ATM by Art. 43]
A. 
Permitted uses are the uses permitted in the Residence A (RA) District.
B. 
Uses by special permit are all uses permitted by special permit in the Residence A (RA) District.
C. 
Prohibited uses. All uses which are not listed above, legally nonconforming or otherwise allowable by the provisions of the zoning regulations are prohibited.
D. 
Development standards are as follows:
(1) 
Minimum lot area: 25,000 square feet; minimum 20,000 square feet exclusive of wetlands.
[Amended 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 54]
(2) 
Minimum frontage: 125 feet.
(3) 
Minimum setbacks:
(a) 
Front: 30 feet.
(b) 
Rear: 35 feet; 10 feet for accessory buildings and swimming pools.
(c) 
Side: 15 feet; 10 feet for accessory buildings and swimming pools.
[Amended 4-11-1994 ATM by Art. 41]
(d) 
Other street: 30 feet.
(4) 
Maximum height: 35 feet, 2 1/2 stories (17 feet, one story for accessory buildings).
[Amended 4-8-2002 ATM by Art. 68]
(5) 
Maximum floor area ratio: .30.
(6) 
In the RB District, no lot shall be considered a building lot unless the center of a 62.5 foot diameter circle can be passed along a continuous line from the lot frontage to the rear yard setback without the circumference intersecting any lot lines and unless the center of the 62.5 foot diameter circle can be passed along 40% of the required frontage without the circumference intersecting any side or rear lot line. This Subsection D(6) shall not apply to an existing lot or existing dwelling for which a building permit has been issued as of the effective date of adoption of this Subsection D(6), or to any alteration, extension or structural change thereto.
[Added 9-10-1995 ATM by Art. 47; amended 4-12-1999 ATM by Art. 64]
E. 
Residence C Districts were discontinued in 1966; however, lots laid out and recorded in Residence B Districts prior to the discontinuance may be built onto the following dimensions for one-family houses:
(1) 
Minimum lot area: 15,000 square feet.
(2) 
Minimum frontage: 100 feet.
(3) 
Minimum setbacks:
(a) 
Front: 25 feet.
(b) 
Rear: 30 feet; 10 feet for accessory buildings and swimming pools.
(c) 
Side: 10 feet.
(4) 
Maximum height: 35 feet, 2 1/2 stories (one story for accessory buildings).
(5) 
Maximum floor area ratio: 0.45.
F. 
The operation of any marijuana establishment as defined in MGL c. 94C, § 1, including without limitation a marijuana cultivator, marijuana testing facility, marijuana product manufacturer, marijuana retailer or any other type of licensed marijuana facility is prohibited in all zoning districts of the Town. This prohibition shall not apply to the sale, distribution or cultivation of marijuana for medical purposes, licensed under Chapter 369 of the Acts of 2012 and currently permitted in the Town of Southborough.
[Added 4-25-2017 ATM by Art. 32]
[Added 4-12-1993 ATM by Art. 43]
A. 
Permitted uses are as follows:
(1) 
All uses permitted in the residential districts (RA and RB).
(2) 
A mobile home or travel trailer used as a dwelling or business quarters for 30 days or fewer in a year.
B. 
Permitted uses up to 2,000 square feet are as follows:
(1) 
Retail sales and services which do not involve manufacturing on the premises.
(2) 
Newspaper, job printing and publishing.
(3) 
Office, bank, office building.
(4) 
Hotel or motel, restaurant (excluding drive-through food service establishments).
[Amended 1-27-1996 STM Art. 5]
(5) 
Clinic or medical testing laboratory.
(6) 
Dwelling on the premises for a night watchman or janitor.
(7) 
Cafeteria on the premises for use by employees and not the general public.
C. 
Permitted uses by special permit from the Planning Board are as follows:
(1) 
All uses listed in Subsection B that are greater than 2,000 square feet.
(2) 
Major residential development.
(3) 
Multifamily dwellings if within a major residential development.
(4) 
Hospital, nursing home, home for the aged.
(5) 
Private school, nursery or kindergarten.
(6) 
Veterinarian, animal hospital, dog kennel.
(7) 
Multifamily housing for the elderly, owned by a public or a nonprofit community organization.
(8) 
Private garage or parking for more than three cars or more than one truck or other commercial vehicle.
(9) 
Indoor recreation, athletic or exercise facility.
[Amended 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 56]
(10) 
Sale or storage of fuel, lumber, building materials and equipment, contractor's yard.
(11) 
Retail sales and services involving manufacturing of products, the majority of which will be sold on the premises to consumers, with not more than four persons engaged in manufacturing operations.
(12) 
Automotive service, gasoline station or repair garage, automotive sales.
D. 
Uses by special permit from the Zoning Board of Appeals are as follows:
(1) 
Accessory apartment.
(2) 
Boat livery, cemetery, children's camp, golf course, private nonprofit membership club, public utility, riding stable, ski tow.
(3) 
Conversion of a one-family house in existence for two years or longer to a two-family dwelling, on a lot with a minimum of 15,000 square feet.
(4) 
A mobile home or travel trailer used as a dwelling or business quarters for more than 30 days in a year.
E. 
Prohibited uses. All uses which are not listed above, legally nonconforming or otherwise allowable by the provisions of the zoning regulations are prohibited.
F. 
Development standards (Note: Also refer to § 174-10.1, Village Business District plan review.) are as follows:
(1) 
Minimum lot area: 10,000 square feet.
(2) 
Minimum frontage: 60 feet.
(3) 
Minimum setbacks:
(a) 
Front: 10 feet; 25 feet if on Route 9.
(b) 
Rear: 35 feet.
(c) 
Side: 10 feet; 25 feet if adjacent to a residential district.
(d) 
Other street: 10 feet; 25 feet if on Route 9.
(4) 
Maximum height: 35 feet, three stories.
(5) 
Residential dwellings. Residential dwellings in the Business Village District must comply with RB District standards.
G. 
The operation of any marijuana establishment as defined in MGL c. 94C, § 1, including without limitation a marijuana cultivator, marijuana testing facility, marijuana product manufacturer, marijuana retailer or any other type of licensed marijuana facility is prohibited in all zoning districts of the Town. This prohibition shall not apply to the sale, distribution or cultivation of marijuana for medical purposes, licensed under Chapter 369 of the Acts of 2012 and currently permitted in the Town of Southborough.
[Added 4-25-2017 ATM by Art. 32]
[Added 4-12-1993 ATM by Art. 43]
A. 
Permitted uses are as follows:
(1) 
All uses permitted in the Residential Districts.
(2) 
Dwelling on the premises for a night watchman or janitor.
(3) 
Cafeteria on the premises for use by employees and not for the general public.
B. 
Permitted uses up to 50,000 square feet are as follows:
(1) 
Office-type trailer or mobile home used as business quarters for 30 days or fewer in a year.
(2) 
Retail sales and services which do not involve manufacturing on the premises.
(3) 
Retail sales and services involving manufacturing of products, the majority of which will be sold on the premises to consumers, with not more than four persons engaged in manufacturing operations.
(4) 
Newspaper, job printing and publishing.
(5) 
Office, bank, office building.
(6) 
Hotel or motel, restaurant (excluding drive-through food service establishments).
[Amended 1-27-1996 STM by Art. 5]
(7) 
Clinic or medical testing laboratory.
(8) 
Automotive service, gasoline station or repair garage, automotive sales.
C. 
Uses permitted by special permit are as follows:
(1) 
All uses allowed in Subsection B that exceed 50,000 square feet.
(2) 
Accessory apartment.
(3) 
Boat livery, cemetery, children's camp, golf course, private nonprofit membership club, public utility, riding stable, ski tow.
(4) 
Hospital, nursing home, home for the aged.
(5) 
Private school, nursery or kindergarten.
(6) 
Veterinarian, animal hospital, dog kennel.
(7) 
Conversion of a one-family house in existence for two years or longer to a two-family dwelling, on a lot with a minimum of 15,000 square feet.
(8) 
Mobile home or travel trailer used as a dwelling or business quarters for more than 30 days in a year.
(9) 
Multifamily housing for the elderly, owned by a public or a nonprofit community housing organization.
(10) 
Private garage or parking for more than three cars or more than one truck or other commercial vehicle.
(11) 
Indoor recreation, athletic or exercise facility; theater for cultural arts.
[Amended 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 56]
(12) 
Sale or storage of fuel, lumber, building materials and equipment, contractor's yard.
(13) 
Hazardous waste storage and disposal facilities, other than small generators, as defined by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, except that a special permit may be issued for such a facility upon approval by the appropriate federal and state agencies, review and comment by the Southborough Board of Health, Conservation Commission, Planning Board and Fire and Police Chiefs, following a duly advertised public hearing and in accordance with the Hazardous Waste Facilities Siting Law.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See MGL c. 21D.
(14) 
Registered marijuana dispensary as defined in 105 CMR 725.004.
[Added 4-16-2014 ATM by Art. 17]
D. 
Prohibited uses. All uses which are not listed above, legally nonconforming or otherwise allowable by the provisions of the zoning regulations are prohibited.
E. 
Development standards are as follows:
(1) 
Minimum lot area: 43,560 square feet (minimum 20,000 square feet exclusive of wetlands).
[Amended 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 54]
(2) 
Minimum frontage: 200 feet.
(3) 
Minimum setbacks:
(a) 
Front: 50 feet; 75 feet if on Route 9.
(b) 
Rear: 50 feet.
(c) 
Side: 50 feet.
(d) 
Other street: 25 feet; 37 1/2 feet if on Route 9.
(4) 
Maximum height: 45 feet, three stories.
(5) 
Maximum floor area ratio: 0.60.
(6) 
Residential dwellings. Residential dwellings in the Highway Business District must comply with RB District standards.
F. 
The operation of any marijuana establishment as defined in MGL c. 94C, § 1, including without limitation a marijuana cultivator, marijuana testing facility, marijuana product manufacturer, marijuana retailer or any other type of licensed marijuana facility is prohibited in all zoning districts of the Town. This prohibition shall not apply to the sale, distribution or cultivation of marijuana for medical purposes, licensed under Chapter 369 of the Acts of 2012 and currently permitted in the Town of Southborough.
[Added 4-25-2017 ATM by Art. 32]
[Added 4-12-1993 ATM by Art. 43]
A. 
Permitted uses are as follows:
(1) 
All uses permitted in the Conservation District.
(2) 
Dwelling on the premises for a night watchman or janitor.
(3) 
Cafeteria on the premises for use by employees and not for the general public.
B. 
Uses permitted up to 50,000 square feet are as follows:
(1) 
Newspaper, job printing and publishing.
(2) 
Office, bank, office building.
(3) 
Wholesale distribution and storage within a building other than a solid waste transfer station.
(4) 
Scientific research and development, including manufacturing, instruction and other activities clearly incidental thereto at the maximum density of three employees per acre of lot and with a direct access to an arterial street, as defined by the Town of Southborough Planning Board.
C. 
Uses requiring a special permit are as follows:
(1) 
All uses permitted in Subsection B that exceed 50,000 square feet.
(2) 
Accessory apartment.
(3) 
Conversion of a one-family house in existence for two years or longer to a two-family dwelling, on a lot with a minimum of 15,000 square feet.
(4) 
Mobile home or travel trailer used as a dwelling or business quarters for more than 30 days in a year.
(5) 
Multifamily housing for the elderly, owned by a public or nonprofit community housing organization.
(6) 
Boat livery, cemetery, children's camp, golf course, private nonprofit membership club, public utility, riding stable, ski tow.
(7) 
Hospital, nursing home, home for the aged.
(8) 
Private school nursery or kindergarten.
(9) 
Veterinarian, animal hospital, dog kennel.
(10) 
Private garage or parking for more than three cars or more than one truck or other commercial vehicle.
(11) 
Light manufacturing, fabrication, assembly and processing utilizing electric or other similar quiet motive power and processes and generating no adverse impacts on the neighborhood and properties therein.
(12) 
Hazardous waste storage and disposal facilities, other than small generators, as defined by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, except that a special permit may be issued for such a facility upon approval by the appropriate federal and state agencies, review and comment by the Southborough Board of Health, Conservation Commission, Planning Board and Fire and Police Chiefs, following a duly advertised public hearing and in accordance with the Hazardous Waste Facilities Siting Law.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See MGL c. 21D.
(13) 
Adult bookstore, adult video store, adult paraphernalia store, adult motion-picture theater, adult live entertainment (see § 174-9I).
[Added 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 56]
(14) 
Heliport or landing place for helicopter, not including storage or maintenance facilities as an accessory use to a permitted principal use.
[Added 4-15-1997 ATM by Art. 53]
(15) 
Registered marijuana dispensary as defined in 105 CMR 725.004.
[Added 4-16-2014 ATM by Art. 17]
D. 
Prohibited uses. All uses which are not listed above, legally nonconforming or otherwise allowable by the provisions of the zoning regulations are prohibited.
E. 
Development standards are as follows:
(1) 
Minimum lot area: 43,560 square feet (minimum 20,000 square feet exclusive of wetlands).
[Amended 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 54]
(2) 
Minimum frontage: 200 feet.
(3) 
Minimum setbacks:
(a) 
Front: 50 feet; 75 feet if on Route 9.
(b) 
Rear: 50 feet.
(c) 
Side: 50 feet.
(d) 
Other street: 50 feet.
(4) 
Maximum height: 45 feet, three stories.
(5) 
Maximum floor area ratio: 0.60.
F. 
The operation of any marijuana establishment as defined in MGL c. 94C, § 1, including without limitation a marijuana cultivator, marijuana testing facility, marijuana product manufacturer, marijuana retailer or any other type of licensed marijuana facility is prohibited in all zoning districts of the Town. This prohibition shall not apply to the sale, distribution or cultivation of marijuana for medical purposes, licensed under Chapter 369 of the Acts of 2012 and currently permitted in the Town of Southborough.
[Added 4-25-2017 ATM by Art. 32]
[Added 4-12-1993 ATM by Art. 43]
A. 
Permitted uses are as follows:
(1) 
All uses permitted in residential districts.
(2) 
Boat livery, cemetery, children's camp, golf course, private nonprofit membership club, public utility, riding stable, ski tow.
(3) 
Hospital, nursing home, home for the aged.
(4) 
Private school, nursery or kindergarten.
(5) 
Veterinarian, animal hospital, dog kennel.
(6) 
Dwelling on the premises for a night watchman or janitor.
(7) 
Cafeteria on the premises for use by employees and not for the general public.
B. 
Uses permitted up to 50,000 square feet are as follows:
(1) 
Private garage or parking for more than three cars or more than one truck or other commercial vehicle.
(2) 
Indoor recreation, athletic or exercise facility; theater for cultural arts.
[Amended 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 56]
(3) 
Sale or storage of fuel, lumber, building materials and equipment, contractor's yard.
(4) 
Retail sales and services which do not involve manufacturing on the premises.
(5) 
Retail sales and services involving manufacturing of products, the majority of which will be sold on the premises to consumers, with not more than four persons engaged in manufacturing operations.
(6) 
Newspaper, job printing and publishing.
(7) 
Office, bank, office building.
(8) 
Hotel or motel, restaurant (excluding drive-through food service establishments).
[Amended 1-27-1996 STM by Art. 5]
(9) 
Clinic or medical testing laboratory.
(10) 
Automotive service, gasoline station or repair garage, automotive sales.
C. 
Uses requiring a special permit are as follows:
(1) 
All uses permitted in Subsection B that exceed 50,000 square feet.
(2) 
Accessory apartment.
(3) 
Conversion of one-family house in existence for two years or longer to a two-family dwelling, on a lot with a minimum of 15,000 square feet.
(4) 
Mobile home or travel trailer used as a dwelling or business quarters for more than 30 days in a year.
(5) 
Multifamily housing for the elderly, owned by a public or nonprofit community housing organization.
(6) 
Major residential development. (Note: Special permit from the Planning Board.)
(7) 
Multifamily dwellings, if within a major residential development. (Note: Special permit from the Planning Board.)
(8) 
(Reserved)[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Former Subsection C(8), Bottling plant, was repealed 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 56.
(9) 
Wholesale distribution and storage within a building, other than a solid waste transfer business; warehousing (excluding trucking terminals with through shipping).
[Amended 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 56]
(10) 
Hazardous waste storage and disposal facilities, other than small generators, as defined by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, except that a special permit may be issued for such a facility upon approval by the appropriate federal and state agencies, review and comment by the Southborough Board of Health, Conservation Commission, Planning Board and Fire and Police Chiefs, following a duly advertised public hearing and in accordance with the Hazardous Waste Facilities Siting Law.[2]
[2]
Editor's Note: See MGL c. 21D.
(11) 
(Reserved)
(12) 
Scientific research and development, including manufacturing, instruction and other activities clearly incidental thereto, and with direct access to an arterial street, as defined by the Town of Southborough Planning Board.
(13) 
Light manufacturing, fabrication, assembly and processing utilizing electric or other similar quiet motive power and processes and generating no adverse impacts on the neighborhood and the properties therein.
(14) 
Registered marijuana dispensary as defined in 105 CMR 725.004.
[Added 4-16-2014 ATM by Art. 17]
D. 
Prohibited uses. All uses which are not listed above, legally nonconforming or otherwise allowable by the provisions of the zoning regulations are prohibited.
E. 
Development standards are as follows:
(1) 
Minimum lot area: 43,560 square feet (minimum, 20,000 square feet exclusive of wetlands).
[Amended 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 54]
(2) 
Minimum frontage: 200 feet.
(3) 
Minimum setbacks:
(a) 
Front: 50 feet; 75 feet if on Route 9.
(b) 
Rear: 50 feet.
(c) 
Side: 50 feet.
(d) 
Other street: 25 feet; 37.5 feet if on Route 9.
(4) 
Maximum height: 45 feet, three stories.
(5) 
Maximum floor area ratio: 0.60.
(6) 
Residential dwellings. Residential dwellings in the ID District must comply with the standards of the RB District.
F. 
The operation of any marijuana establishment as defined in MGL c. 94C, § 1, including without limitation a marijuana cultivator, marijuana testing facility, marijuana product manufacturer, marijuana retailer or any other type of licensed marijuana facility is prohibited in all zoning districts of the Town. This prohibition shall not apply to the sale, distribution or cultivation of marijuana for medical purposes, licensed under Chapter 369 of the Acts of 2012 and currently permitted in the Town of Southborough.
[Added 4-25-2017 ATM by Art. 32]
[Added 4-12-1993 ATM by Art. 43]
A. 
Permitted uses are as follows:
(1) 
All uses permitted in residential districts.
(2) 
Office-type trailer or mobile home used as business quarters for 30 days or fewer.
(3) 
Dwelling on the premises for a night watchman or janitor.
(4) 
Cafeteria on the premises for use by employees and not for the general public.
B. 
Uses permitted by special permit are as follows:
(1) 
Accessory apartment.
(2) 
Boat livery, cemetery, children's camp, golf course, private nonprofit membership club, public utility, riding stable, ski tow.
(3) 
Hospital, nursing home, home for the aged.
(4) 
Private school, nursery or kindergarten.
(5) 
Veterinarian, animal hospital, dog kennel.
(6) 
Conversion of a one-family dwelling, in existence for two years or longer, to a two-family dwelling, on a lot with a minimum of 15,000 square feet.
(7) 
Mobile home or travel trailer used as a dwelling or business quarters for more than 30 days in a year.
(8) 
Multifamily housing for the elderly, owned by a public or a nonprofit community housing organization.
(9) 
Other multifamily dwellings, if within a major residential development. (Note: Special permit from the Planning Board.)
(10) 
Major residential development. (Note: Special permit from the Planning Board.)
(11) 
Private garage or parking for more than three cars or more than one truck or other commercial vehicle.
(12) 
Scientific research and development, including manufacturing, instruction and other activities clearly incidental thereto, at the maximum density of three employees per acre of lot and with direct access to an arterial street, as defined by the Town of Southborough Planning Board.
C. 
Prohibited uses. All uses which are not listed above, legally nonconforming or otherwise allowable by the provisions of the zoning regulations are prohibited.
D. 
Development standards are as follows:
(1) 
Minimum lot area: 50 acres; minimum 20,000 square feet exclusive of wetlands.
[Amended 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 54]
(2) 
Minimum frontage: 500 feet.
(3) 
Minimum setbacks:
(a) 
Front: 150 feet.
(b) 
Rear: 200 feet.
(c) 
Other street: 200 feet.
(4) 
Maximum height: 35 feet, three stories.
(5) 
Maximum floor area ratio: 0.40.
(6) 
Residential dwellings. Residential dwellings in the SP District must comply with the standards of the RA District.
E. 
The operation of any marijuana establishment as defined in MGL c. 94C, § 1, including without limitation a marijuana cultivator, marijuana testing facility, marijuana product manufacturer, marijuana retailer or any other type of licensed marijuana facility is prohibited in all zoning districts of the Town. This prohibition shall not apply to the sale, distribution or cultivation of marijuana for medical purposes, licensed under Chapter 369 of the Acts of 2012 and currently permitted in the Town of Southborough.
[Added 4-25-2017 ATM by Art. 32]
[Added 4-12-1993 ATM by Art. 43; amended 4-12-2011 ATM by Art. 32; 4-16-2014 ATM by Art. 19]
A. 
The Wetland and Floodplain District is considered to be an overlay district. The District includes all special flood hazard areas within the Town of Southborough designated as Zone A and AE, on the Worcester County Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) issued by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for the administration of the National Flood Insurance Program. The map panels of the Worcester County FIRM that are wholly or partially within the Town of Southborough are Panel Numbers 25027C0654F, 25027C0658F, 25027C0659F, 25027C0662F, 25027C0666F, 25027C0667F, 25027C0668F, 25027C0669F, 25027C0678F and 25027C0686F, dated July 16, 2014. The exact boundaries of the District may be defined by the one-hundred-year base flood elevations shown on the FIRM and further defined by the Worcester County Flood Insurance Study (FIS) report dated July 16, 2014. The FIRM and FIS report are incorporated herein by reference and are on file with the Town Clerk, Planning Board, Building Official, Conservation Commission and Department of Public Works.
B. 
Base flood elevation and floodway data.
(1) 
Floodway data. In Zones A and AE, along watercourses that have not had a regulatory floodway designated, the best available federal, state, local, or other floodway data shall be used to prohibit encroachments in floodways which would result in any increase in flood levels within the community during the occurrence of the base flood discharge.
(2) 
Base flood elevation data. Base flood elevation data is required for subdivision proposals or other developments greater than 50 lots or five acres, whichever is the lesser, within unnumbered A Zones.
C. 
Notification of watercourse alteration. In a riverine situation, the Conservation Commission shall notify the following of any alteration or relocation of a watercourse:
(1) 
Adjacent communities.
(2) 
NFIP State Coordinator:
Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation
251 Causeway Street, Suite 600-700
Boston, MA 02114-2104
(3) 
NFIP Program Specialist:
Federal Emergency Management Agency, Region I
99 High Street, 6th Floor
Boston, MA 02110
D. 
Reference to existing regulations.
(1) 
The Floodplain District is established as an overlay district to all other districts. All development in the District, including structural and nonstructural activities, whether permitted by right or by special permit, must be in compliance with Chapter 131, Section 40, of the Massachusetts General Laws and with the following:
(a) 
Section of the Massachusetts State Building Code which addresses floodplain and coastal high hazard areas (currently 780 CMR).
(b) 
Wetlands Protection Regulations, Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) (currently 310 CMR 10.00).
(c) 
Inland Wetlands Restriction, DEP (currently 310 CMR 13.00).
(d) 
Minimum Requirements for the Subsurface Disposal of Sanitary Sewage, DEP (currently 310 CMR 15, Title 5).
(2) 
Any variances from the provisions and requirements of the above referenced state regulations may only be granted in accordance with the required variance procedures of these state regulations.
E. 
Other use regulations.
(1) 
All subdivision proposals must be designed to assure that:
(a) 
Such proposals minimize flood damage;
(b) 
All public utilities and facilities are located and constructed to minimize or eliminate flood damage; and
(c) 
Adequate drainage is provided to reduce exposure to flood hazards.
(2) 
In Zones AE, along watercourses in the Town of Southborough that have a regulatory floodway designated on the Worcester County FIRM, encroachments are prohibited in the regulatory floodway which would result in any increase in flood levels within the community during the occurrence of the base flood discharge.
F. 
The operation of any marijuana establishment as defined in MGL c. 94C, § 1, including without limitation a marijuana cultivator, marijuana testing facility, marijuana product manufacturer, marijuana retailer or any other type of licensed marijuana facility is prohibited in all zoning districts of the Town. This prohibition shall not apply to the sale, distribution or cultivation of marijuana for medical purposes, licensed under Chapter 369 of the Acts of 2012 and currently permitted in the Town of Southborough.
[Added 4-25-2017 ATM by Art. 32]
[Added 4-12-1993 ATM by Art. 43]
A. 
Purpose. The purpose of the Critical Resource District is to ensure that lands critical to the environmental quality of the Town of Southborough are not physically developed prior to consideration of alternatives to such development.
B. 
Regulations. Critical Resource Districts, as shown on the Zoning Map, shall be considered to be superimposed over any other district established in this chapter. Land in a Critical Resource District may be used as otherwise permitted in the underlying district, subject to the following:
(1) 
No density bonuses as authorized under § 174-13.2F shall be allowed for development within the Critical Resource District, but land within the district may be used to earn development bonuses for development to be located outside the district through transferring of development rights, as provided by § 174-13.2F.
(2) 
Submittals under major residential development pursuant to an optional special permit as specified in § 174-13.2A must include a flexible development proposal.
[Amended 10-7-2013 STM by Art. 9]
(3) 
In acting on major residential development proposals pursuant to an optional special permit as specified in § 174-13.2A, if the Planning Board determines that neither the basic development proposal before it nor any submitted alternatives can adequately protect scenic views, habitats, fragile natural environments or other critical environmental resources, it shall grant a special permit only either:
[Amended 10-7-2013 STM by Art. 9]
(a) 
Upon determination that nondevelopment alternatives for utilization of site value have been reasonably pursued and found to be infeasible, including transfer of development rights or sale of land or rights to the Town or other organization having land preservation purposes; or
(b) 
Upon imposition of a stipulation that no building permit is to be issued under the special permit and no site preparation is to take place until either 120 days lapse from the date of approval or a Town Meeting has earlier acted on a proposal for acquisition of fee or rights over part or all of the premises in question.
C. 
The operation of any marijuana establishment as defined in MGL c. 94C, § 1, including without limitation a marijuana cultivator, marijuana testing facility, marijuana product manufacturer, marijuana retailer or any other type of licensed marijuana facility is prohibited in all zoning districts of the Town. This prohibition shall not apply to the sale, distribution or cultivation of marijuana for medical purposes, licensed under Chapter 369 of the Acts of 2012 and currently permitted in the Town of Southborough.
[Added 4-25-2017 ATM by Art. 32]
[Added 4-15-1997 ATM by Art. 52]
A. 
Purpose. The purpose of this section is to establish a district in which wireless communications services may be provided while protecting, to the greatest extent possible, public health, safety and the general welfare. Specifically, the Wireless Communications Services District has been created to protect the general public from hazards associated with wireless communications towers and minimize visual impacts from wireless communications towers on residential districts within Southborough. For the purposes of this section, "wireless communications services" shall mean the provision of the following types of services: cellular telephone service, personal communications and enhanced specialized mobile radio service. Such services, it is anticipated, will be provided via wireless communications towers, including antennas and accessory structures, if any.
B. 
Location. The Wireless Communications Services District shall be located on all land owned by the Town of Southborough which is held in the care, custody, management and control of the Board of Selectmen, School Committee and Conservation Commission, and all land located in Highway Business Districts, Industrial Districts and Industrial Park Districts. The Wireless Communications Services District shall be construed as an overlay district with regard to said locations. All requirements of the underlying zoning district shall remain in full force and effect, except as may be specifically superseded herein.
C. 
Submittal requirements. As part of any application for a permit, applicants shall submit, at a minimum, the information required for site plan approval, as set forth herein in § 174-10, as may be amended. Applicants shall also describe the capacity of the tower, including the number and types of antennas that it can accommodate and the basis for the calculation of capacity, and any accessory structures.
D. 
Use restrictions. A wireless communications tower (including antennas and accessory structures, if any) may be erected in a Wireless Communications Services District upon the issuance of a special permit by the Board of Appeals pursuant to § 174-9, subject to site plan approval, as set forth herein at § 174-10, as may be amended, and subject to all of the following conditions:
(1) 
To the extent feasible, all service providers shall colocate on a single tower. Towers shall be designed to structurally accommodate the maximum number of foreseeable users (within a ten-year period) technically practicable.
(2) 
New towers shall be considered only upon a finding by the Board of Appeals that existing or approved towers cannot accommodate the wireless communications equipment planned for the proposed tower.
(3) 
In no event shall any such tower be located closer to two miles to any other such tower.
(4) 
Tower height shall not exceed 75 feet above the existing terrain.
(5) 
A tower shall not be erected nearer to any property line than a distance equal to the vertical height of the tower (inclusive of any appurtenant devices), measured at the mean finished grade of the tower base.
(6) 
To the extent feasible, all network interconnections from the communications site shall be via land lines.
(7) 
Existing on-site vegetation shall be preserved to the maximum extent practicable.
(8) 
The tower shall minimize, to the extent feasible, adverse visual effects on the environment. The Board of Appeals may impose reasonable conditions to ensure this result, including painting and lighting standards.
(9) 
Traffic associated with the tower and accessory facilities and structures shall not adversely affect abutting ways.
(10) 
Applicants proposing to erect wireless communications towers, accessory facilities and structures on municipally owned land or structures shall provide evidence of contractual authorization from the Town of Southborough to conduct wireless communications services on municipally owned property.
E. 
Nonuse. All unused towers or parts thereof or accessory facilities and structures which have not been used for two years shall be dismantled and removed at the owner's expense.
F. 
Exemptions. Towers used for the purposes set forth in MGL c. 40A, § 3, are exempt from the provisions of this section.
G. 
The operation of any marijuana establishment as defined in MGL c. 94C, § 1, including without limitation a marijuana cultivator, marijuana testing facility, marijuana product manufacturer, marijuana retailer or any other type of licensed marijuana facility is prohibited in all zoning districts of the Town. This prohibition shall not apply to the sale, distribution or cultivation of marijuana for medical purposes, licensed under Chapter 369 of the Acts of 2012 and currently permitted in the Town of Southborough.
[Added 4-25-2017 ATM by Art. 32]
[Amended 4-14-1986 ATM by Art. 46]
In acting on applications for special permits, the special permit granting authority, whether the Board of Appeals or as otherwise designated by this chapter, shall conform to the procedural, decision-making and filing requirements of Chapter 40A of the General Laws, shall make general and, as appropriate, specific findings as provided herein or called for by the subject matter and may impose conditions, limitations and safeguards. No special permit shall issue except upon a general finding that the use sought and its characteristics shall be in harmony with the intent and purpose of this chapter, shall not be in conflict with public health, safety, convenience and welfare and shall not be substantially detrimental or offensive to the neighborhood or destructive of property values therein. In addition, the following special requirements shall apply:
A. 
Decision considerations. Special permits shall be granted only if the special permit granting authority determines that the proposal's benefits to the Town will outweigh any adverse effects for the Town or the vicinity, after consideration of the following preferred qualities, among other things:
(1) 
Location.
(a) 
The proposal should be located near uses which are similar to the proposed use, or if not, the nearby uses should be ones likely to benefit from rather than be damaged by having the proposal nearby or be permanently buffered from it.
(b) 
Providing adequate water and drainage for this location should pose no special public problems.
(c) 
The site should be able to accommodate the proposal without substantial environmental damage due to wetland loss, habitat disturbance or damage to valuable trees or other natural assets.
(2) 
Activity type and mix.
(a) 
Nonresidential proposals should contribute to the diversity of services available locally.
(b) 
Residential proposals should serve housing needs of local residents.
(3) 
Visual consequences.
(a) 
Scenic views from public ways and developed properties should be considerately treated in the site arrangement and building design.
(b) 
Visibility of parking and service areas from public streets should be minimized through site arrangement, and such areas should be screened from abutting premises.
(c) 
Except on Route 9 and in special circumstances, domestic scale should be maintained in the building's design through massing devices, such as breaks in wall and roof planes and through the design of architectural features.
(4) 
Access.
(a) 
Access to the location should increase existing traffic by no more than 10% at any point, taking into consideration any special access provisions committed (ride-sharing, etc.).
(b) 
Pedestrian and vehicular movement to, from and within the site should be safe and convenient and arranged so as not to disturb abutting properties.
(5) 
Development rate.
(a) 
Townwide, development should not outpace the ability of the Town to provide necessary off-site services, including schools, water and local road capacity.
(b) 
Development making unusually large demands on service capacities should not be allowed to preempt smaller developments from gaining a fair share of that capacity.
B. 
Accessory apartments. Special permits for accessory apartments may be issued upon referral of the application and receipt and consideration of a report, or after 35 days elapse without such report, from the Board of Health, certifying that adequate provisions have been made in accordance with the requirements of the Board of Health for drainage and for the disposal of sewage and waste generated by the occupancy of the apartment, and from the Planning Board, describing the lot on which the dwelling is located, the neighborhood where it is located and the effect of the proposed apartment thereon, the adequacy of ingress and egress provisions, the recommendations of the Planning Board as to the advisability of granting the special permit and any restrictions that should be imposed as a condition thereof and the provisions for off-street parking in a manner consistent with the character of the premises. If the decision of the Board of Appeals differs from the recommendations of the Planning Board, the reasons therefor shall be stated in the decision. The accessory apartment shall comply with the following conditions and requirements:
[Amended 4-30-1990 ATM by Art. 50]
(1) 
The habitable floor area of the accessory unit shall not exceed 25% of the habitable floor area of the entire dwelling plus that of any accessory building used for the accessory dwelling.
(2) 
There is no other apartment on the lot on which the accessory apartment is proposed.
(3) 
Not more than the required minimum exterior alterations have been or will be made to the one-family house and to any accessory buildings, and the site plan of the lot and floor plans of the dwelling thereon have been filed with the Building Inspector prior to the application to the Board of Appeals.
(4) 
The total cumulative number of accessory apartments permitted by the Board of Appeals since January 1979 shall at no time exceed 5% of the total number of one-family houses in Southborough at the beginning of the year in which the application is filed, based on the Assessor's records. Residences containing apartments shall be counted as one-family houses for the purposes of this subsection.
C. 
Hazardous waste facilities. Special permits for hazardous waste facilities may be issued only in BV, BH, ID, IP and SP Districts upon site assignment by the Board of Health, approval by appropriate federal and state agencies, including the Hazardous Waste Facility Site Safety Council, and the conclusion of siting processes by the Local Assessment Committee, as provided in Chapter 21D of the General Laws. In considering a special permit for such a facility, the Board of Appeals shall give due weight to the findings and comments of the Planning Board, Conservation Commission, Fire Chief, Police Chief, Metropolitan District Commission and the Local Assessment Committee, including the imposition of conditions, limitations and safeguards called for in the recommendations of these agencies.
[Amended 4-14-1986 ATM by Art. 49]
D. 
Large signs. See § 174-11E, Special permits for signs.
[Amended 4-14-1986 ATM by Art. 49; 4-8-2002 ATM by Art. 70]
E. 
Nonconforming uses, lots and structures. Special permits may be issued for the extension or alteration of legally nonconforming uses, structures and lots, including a change in the nonconforming use to another nonconforming use, provided that the Board of Appeals finds that such extension, alteration or change shall not be substantially more detrimental to the neighborhood, will not increase the extent of nonconformance in size or in impact and that the cost thereof shall not exceed 50% of the assessed value of the nonconforming structure at the time of application, and further provided that the estimate of the cost of any extension or alteration utilized by the Board of Appeals in evaluating the above specified 50% requirement of the assessed value shall not be less than a cost estimate of such extension or alteration based on a nationally recognized building cost estimate manual or system acceptable to the Zoning Board of Appeals. No special permits under this subsection shall be granted for nonconforming signs subject to Chapter 93 or 93D of the General Laws.
[Amended 4-15-2008 ATM by Art. 38]
F. 
Wetland and Floodplain District uses. Special permits may be issued for alterations, additions and new structures and uses in WFP Districts only when the following conditions are met:
(1) 
The Board of Appeals finds no potential detrimental impact on the neighborhood, as provided in the lead-in of this section above.
(2) 
The application is referred to the Planning Board, the Conservation Commission and the Board of Health, and their reports are received and given due consideration, or 35 days elapse following the referral without the receipt of said reports.
(3) 
No alteration, fill, additions or new construction will occur within the floodway, as defined by the Federal Emergency Management Administration.
(4) 
The land is not, in fact, subject to flooding and not unsuitable for the purposes of the special permit due to topography, soils or hydrological conditions; if located in a floodplain, a registered professional engineer certifies that the proposed development shall not result in any increase of flood levels during the occurrence of a one-hundred-year flood and that adequate protection shall be provided against the effects of current, uplift, battering and washout.
(5) 
If the special permit is for the construction or improvement of access to existing uses or to land not in a WFP District, it must be shown that there is no feasible alternate access and that the natural flow of watercourses will not be impeded or altered.
(6) 
If the special permit is for the construction of a barn, garage or other accessory building or structure, the applicant shall prove, to the satisfaction of the Board of Appeals, that the special permit will not result in an increase of ground coverage by principal and accessory structures of more than 25%, compared to the conditions in May 1975.
(7) 
The Board of Appeals may consider compensatory storage and other mitigating measures acceptable to the Conservation Commission to meet the requirements of this Subsection F.
(8) 
If the special permit is for a dam, watercourse alteration, excavation, drainage or wetland improvements or mosquito control activities, the Board of Appeals shall consider also the broader impacts thereof and weigh any potential detrimental impacts against the benefits of the proposed improvements.
G. 
Two-family dwelling. The conversion of a one-family house which has been in existence for two years or longer to a two-family dwelling is allowed by special permit from the Board of Appeals. The application will be considered after receipt of a report, or after 35 days elapse without such a report, from the Board of Health certifying that adequate provisions have been made in accordance with the requirements of the Board of Health for drainage and the disposal of sewage and waste generated by the occupancy of the two-family dwelling. There shall also be a report from the Planning Board describing the lot on which the dwelling is located, the neighborhood where it is located and the effects of the proposed two-family dwelling thereon, the adequacy of ingress and egress provisions, any recommendations by the Planning Board as to the advisability of granting the special permit and any restrictions that should be imposed as conditions thereof and the provisions for off-street parking in a manner consistent with the character of the premises. If the decision of the Board of Appeals differs from the recommendations of the Planning Board, the reasons therefor shall be stated in the decision. The two-family dwelling shall comply with the following conditions and requirements:
[Added 4-8-1991 ATM by Art. 49]
(1) 
The lot on which a one-family residence is to be converted to a two-family dwelling must be a minimum of 15,000 square feet.
(2) 
There must be no other apartment on the lot on which the two-family residence is proposed.
(3) 
Not more than the required minimum exterior alterations have been or will be made to the one-family house and to any accessory buildings, and the site plan of the lot and floor plans of the dwelling thereon must be filed with the Building Inspector prior to the application to the Board of Appeals.
H. 
Multifamily housing for the elderly is allowed by special permit per the Schedule of Use Regulations, § 174-8.
[Added 4-8-1991 ATM by Art. 50; amended 4-15-1997 ATM by Art. 56]
(1) 
The Zoning Board of Appeals shall grant a special permit for elderly housing only after considering the following criteria:
(a) 
No development shall exceed an average per site of a maximum three units per contiguous acre exclusive of 80% of wetlands, and six bedrooms per contiguous acre exclusive of 80% of wetlands. No unit shall have more than three bedrooms; or no development shall exceed an average per site of a maximum three units per contiguous acre exclusive of wetlands, and six bedrooms per contiguous acre exclusive of wetlands. No unit shall have more than three bedrooms. Any application submitted to the Zoning Board of Appeals for a special permit for multifamily housing for the elderly prior to December 10, 1997, shall be exempt from the exclusion of wetlands when calculating the maximum number of units per site.
[Amended 12-10-1997 STM by Art. 3]
(b) 
Evidence shall be shown that, to the greatest extent possible, the development is offering to provide for the needs of Southborough residents of varying economic levels.
(c) 
The units shall have an exterior design that is consistent with the styles of the surrounding residential neighborhoods and the Town of Southborough in general.
(d) 
Wherever possible, pedestrian connection to local services should be incorporated into the site design to lessen the dependency on the automobile.
(e) 
The plan shall be designed to maximize the preservation of the natural features of the site through the use of cluster housing and/or creative site planning. Wherever possible, existing vegetation should be retained throughout the site as a natural buffer to adjacent properties.
(f) 
The proposed development shall satisfy the criteria of this section (§ 174-9) outlined in Subsection A, Decision considerations.
(g) 
The total cumulative number of units approved under this section by the Zoning Board of Appeals since January 1998 shall at no time exceed 7% of the total number of one-family houses in Southborough at the beginning of the year in which the application is filed, based on the Assessor's records. Residences containing apartments shall be counted as one-family houses for the purposes of this subsection.
[Added 4-13-1998 ATM by Art. 52]
(2) 
The granting of a special permit by the Zoning Board of Appeals for multifamily housing for the elderly does not relieve the applicant from receiving all other applicable approvals, including Conservation Commission, Board of Health, and Site Plan approval from the Planning Board (re: § 174-10).
I. 
Adult uses.
[Added 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 57]
(1) 
Purpose and intent. This bylaw is enacted pursuant to MGL c. 40A, § 9A, to serve the compelling interests of the Town of Southborough by preventing the clustering and concentration of adult entertainment enterprises as defined herein because of the deleterious effect on character and values of adjacent areas.
(2) 
Definitions. As used in this section, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
ADULT BOOKSTORE
An establishment having as a substantial or significant portion of its stock-in-trade books, magazines and other matter which are distinguished or characterized by their emphasis depicting, describing or relating to sexual conduct or sexual excitement as defined in MGL c. 272, § 31.
ADULT VIDEO STORE
An establishment having as a substantial or significant portion of its stock-in-trade videos, movies or other film material which are distinguished or characterized by their emphasis depicting, describing or relating to sexual conduct or sexual excitement as defined in MGL c. 272, § 31.
ADULT PARAPHERNALIA STORE
An establishment having as a substantial or significant portion of its stock devices, objects, tools or toys which are distinguished or characterized by their emphasis depicting, describing or relating to sexual conduct or sexual excitement as defined in MGL c. 272, § 31.
ADULT MOTION-PICTURE THEATER
An enclosed building used for presenting material distinguished by an emphasis on matter depicting, describing or relating to sexual conduct or sexual excitement as defined in MGL c. 272, § 31.
(3) 
Special permit standards. No special permit may be granted by the Zoning Board of Appeals for an adult bookstore, adult video store, adult paraphernalia store or adult motion-picture theater unless the following conditions are satisfied:
(a) 
No adult bookstore, adult video store, adult paraphernalia store or adult motion-picture theater may be located less than 1,000 feet from a residential zoning district, school, library, church or other religious use, child care facility, park, playground, recreational areas or another adult bookstore, adult video store, adult paraphernalia store or adult motion-picture theater. The distance of 1,000 feet shall be measured from all property lines of the proposed adult use.
(b) 
No pictures, publications, videotapes, movies, covers or other implements, items or advertising that fall within the definition of adult bookstore, adult video store, adult paraphernalia store or adult motion-picture theater merchandise or are erotic, prurient or related to violence, sadism or sexual exploitation shall be displayed in the windows of or on the building of any adult bookstore, adult video store, adult paraphernalia store or adult motion-picture theater or be visible to the public from the pedestrian sidewalks or walkways or from other areas, public or semipublic, outside such establishments.
(c) 
No special permit shall be issued to any person convicted of violating the provisions of MGL c. 119, § 63, or MGL c. 272, § 28.
(4) 
All existing adult bookstores, adult video stores, adult paraphernalia stores and adult motion-picture theaters shall apply for such special permit within 90 days following the adoption of this subsection.
(5) 
Any special permit granted under this section shall lapse within one-year of the date of the grant, not including the time required to pursue or await the termination of an appeal referred to in MGL c. 40A, § 17, if substantial use thereof has not sooner commenced, except for good cause, or, in the case of permit for construction, if construction has not begun within one-year of the date of grant, except for good cause.
J. 
Medical marijuana.[1]
[Added 4-16-2014 ATM by Art. 17]
(1) 
General provisions.
(a) 
Purpose and intent. This section is enacted in order to serve the compelling interests of the Town to address possible public health, safety and quality of life effects related to the location and operation in the Town of a registered marijuana dispensary or any other activities permitted or related to Chapter 369 of the Acts of 2012 (an Act for the Humanitarian Medical Use of Marijuana). This bylaw establishes specific zoning regulations for the limited establishment of any registered marijuana dispensary in appropriate places and under strict conditions, for medical marijuana infused products, medical marijuana paraphernalia, and medical marijuana dispensing and cultivation (either related to a registered marijuana dispensary or the personal cultivation by qualified patients or by personal caregivers on the behalf of qualified patients). It is the intent of this section to minimize impacts on adjacent properties, residential neighborhoods, schools and other places where children congregate, and other land uses potentially incompatible with medical marijuana activities.
(b) 
Applicability. No registered marijuana dispensary or related use shall be established except in full compliance with the provisions of the State Department of Public Health (DPH) regulations for medical marijuana as promulgated in the Code of Massachusetts Regulations (105 CMR 725) and this § 174-9J. The cultivation, production, processing, assembly, packaging, retail or wholesale sale, trade, distribution or dispensing of marijuana for medical use is prohibited unless permitted hereunder.
(c) 
Special terms used in this § 174-9J shall have the meanings defined in the promulgated DPH regulations for medical marijuana (105 CMR 725.004).
(d) 
Nothing in this § 174-9J shall be construed to supersede or preempt any federal or state laws governing the sale, distribution or consumption of narcotic drugs. If the application of any provision of this § 174-9J shall be determined to be invalid or unenforceable, the remainder hereof shall not be affected thereby, and the provisions of this section are severable.
(2) 
Basic requirements.
(a) 
The Board of Appeals as special permit granting authority may grant a special permit for a registered marijuana dispensary only in the Highway Business District [as identified in § 174-8.5C(14)], Industrial Park District [as identified in § 174-8.6C(15)], or Industrial District [as identified in § 174-8.7C(14)], and only upon compliance with the following requirements:
[1] 
No applicant shall have been convicted of violating the provisions of Massachusetts General Laws c. 119, § 63, or c. 94C, or similar laws in other jurisdictions.
[2] 
The applicant has consented in writing to a criminal background check that includes jurisdictions beyond Massachusetts.
[3] 
A registered marijuana dispensary and/or cultivation activities shall only be located (i) on property that borders Route 9, and (ii) not less than 1,000 linear feet from a property line of a school, recreational facility or day-care center, or any facility in which children commonly congregate [see definitions in § 174-9J(2)(c) below] located in the Town of Southborough, and (iii) not less than 100 linear feet from a property line of a residence located in the Town of Southborough. The required distances shall be measured from all property lines of the proposed facility.
[Amended 4-12-2016 ATM by Art. 37]
[4] 
Any permitted registered marijuana dispensary site shall comply with the requirements of the Town's Sign Bylaw[2] at all times and, upon penalty of special permit revocation, shall not use any advertising material that is misleading, deceptive, false, or that is designed to appeal to minors. Off-site signage or advertising in any form (including billboards) is prohibited.
[2]
Editor's Note: See § 174-11, Signs.
[5] 
No activities, products or treatment occurring within or on the premises of a registered marijuana dispensary shall be displayed in the windows or on the building thereof, or be visible to the public from the pedestrian sidewalks or walkways or from other areas, public or semi-public, outside such facility or premises.
(b) 
No person shall be deemed to have any entitlement or vested rights to permitting under this bylaw by virtue of having received any prior permit from the Town of any kind, including prior permitting under this bylaw.
(c) 
For purposes of this § 174-9J, the following terms shall have the meanings ascribed:
DAY-CARE CENTER
Any establishment, whether public or private, that provides care for children and is licensed by the Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care.
RECREATIONAL FACILITY
A park, playground, forest preserve, conservation area, running trail or track, hiking trail, beach, wading pool, soccer field, baseball field, football field, basketball court, hockey rink, dance or gymnastic studio, whether publicly or privately owned, to which the public has a right of access as an invitee.
SCHOOL
Any public or private educational facility that provides services to children in grades 12 or under.
(3) 
Term of special permit. Any special permit issued pursuant to this § 174-9J shall be valid for a period of two years from the date of issuance. Any renewal of a special permit shall be governed by the then-existing standards and procedures set forth in this bylaw, and any regulations adopted pursuant thereto by the Board of Appeals.
[1]
Editor's Note: See also Ch. 51, Marijuana or Tetrahydrocannabinol, Public Consumption of.
[Added 4-11-1994 ATM by Art. 40]
A. 
Common driveways serving more than two or more detached single-family dwellings shall not be allowed in any district unless evidence can be presented to the Planning Board that a common driveway would be more beneficial to the Town than a conventional plan. The Planning Board, in considering the granting of a permit for a common driveway, must be assured the following minimum requirements have been met:
(1) 
Frontage: each lot served by a permitted common driveway must have its own full required frontage on a public way.
(2) 
The design of common driveways shall assure adequate access for emergency and public safety vehicles to include turnaround provision in all seasons, provide water service, if available, including hydrants, and provide adequate drainage of surface waters.
(3) 
A declaration of covenants, easements and restrictions for the use and maintenance of said common driveways shall be required by the Planning Board and shall include satisfactory arrangements concerning driveway maintenance, snowplowing and restriction against future use as a public way. Said covenants, easements and restrictions shall be perpetual, run with the land and be recorded at the Registry of Deeds.
(4) 
In the best interest of public safety, the Planning Board may require the common driveway to be officially named, clearly identified with appropriate signage and with all residences within the way addressed to indicate this name.
B. 
The Planning Board shall act on any request for a common driveway permit within 30 days of application, in which time they will seek input from the Departments of Public Safety, Public Works, Board of Health and solicit comments from the Conservation Commission.
C. 
Enforcement. To assure that the conditions of the common driveway permit are met to the greatest extent possible, the following items must be satisfied prior to the issuance of an occupancy permit for any house on the common driveway:
[Added 4-15-1997 ATM by Art. 51]
(1) 
A Town-approved Declaration of Common Driveway, Easement and Covenant shall be signed by the buyer and filed with the Registry of Deeds. A master covenant, designed by the Planning Board, could be used.
(2) 
It would be the responsibility of the developer to provide the Inspector of Buildings with the above required documentation, including, if appropriate, an engineering report asserting that all required work has been completed per the plans and conditions approved by the Planning Board.
[Amended 4-8-1985 ATM by Art. 39; 4-14-1986 ATM by Art. 48; 4-13-1987 ATM by Art. 43; 4-11-1988 STM by Art. 4; 4-26-1990 ATM by Art. 41]
A. 
The purpose of the site plan review procedure is to encourage a desirable and compatible character of development within the Town of Southborough and to assure safety, promote logic, imagination and innovation in the design process while complying with all zoning requirements. The requirements of this section shall be applicable to the following:
(1) 
Any nonresidential development that results in an increase in on-site parking.
(2) 
All modifications to existing development projects which fall within the applicability of the Town's regulations for parking and loading (§ 174-12) or landscaping (§ 174-13).
(3) 
Any change in use or reactivation of a facility that has not been in use for a period of two years.
[Added 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 51]
(4) 
Multifamily housing for the elderly.
[Added 4-15-1997 ATM by Art. 56]
(5) 
Adaptive reuse of historic buildings.
[Added 4-25-2017 ATM by Art. 30]
B. 
Site plan review will be processed by one of the following means:
(1) 
Minor plan review. Any new development, or expansion in use other than a single-family or two-family residence which adds less than 2,000 square feet of floor area or which would require at least five but fewer than 20 parking spaces regardless of the number of parking spaces existing on the premises, or any change of use of a facility that totals less than 2,000 square feet shall be subject to minor plan review by the Site Plan Review Committee. The Site Plan Review Committee shall be chaired by the Town Planner and will consist of a Selectmen or its designee, Building Inspector, Highway Superintendent, Board of Health Agent, Superintendent of the Water Department, Police Chief and Fire Chief or their designee, who will meet at a regularly scheduled time and place to review plans. The Committee shall also seek the advice of the Conservation Commission in the review of all minor plan submissions.
[Amended 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 51]
(a) 
Minor plan review will require 10 copies of the site plan to be submitted to the office of the Planning Board, together with an application form and filing fee. All plans will be prepared at a scale no greater than one inch equals 40 feet on standard twenty-four-by-thirty-six-inch sheets and shall show, as a minimum:
[1] 
All existing and proposed buildings, including setbacks.
[2] 
Existing and proposed parking.
[3] 
Driveway openings.
[4] 
All property and street lines.
[5] 
Existing and proposed landscaping.
[6] 
Existing and proposed signs.
[7] 
Surfacing, indicating treatment of all surfaces.
[8] 
Location of all wetlands.
[9] 
Method of sewage disposal.
[10] 
Water supply.
[11] 
Stormwater drainage.
[12] 
Such other information as the Site Plan Review Committee may reasonably request.
(b) 
Any dispute arising from the minor plan review process or any plan not receiving unanimous approval from the Site Plan Review Committee shall be referred to the Planning Board for action. The Committee may also refer any site plan that, due to unusual circumstances or a unique situation, it feels should be approved by the Planning Board. All site plans sent to the Planning Board by the Site Plan Review Committee for action will be handled through the minor plan review process.
[Amended 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 51]
(c) 
The Site Plan Review Committee shall approve, disapprove or refer to the Planning Board all submittals for minor plan review within 30 days of a completed application to the office of the Planning Board.
(d) 
Where applicable, all other criteria and conditions of this section will govern minor plan review.
(2) 
Major plan review. Any new development, or expansion in use other than a single-family or two-family residence which adds 2,000 square feet or more of floor area or which would require 20 or more parking spaces, regardless of the number of parking spaces existing on the premises, or any change of use of a facility that totals 2,000 square feet or more shall be subject to major plan review by the Planning Board. The major site plan submission shall consist of the following elements:
[Amended 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 51]
(a) 
Ownership, zoning, use and the general location of structure and topography within 300 feet of the property lines of the site or adjacent land contiguously owned with the site.
(b) 
All site features, existing or proposed, including but not limited to the following:
[1] 
Driveways, including widths.
[2] 
Parking facilities, including dimensions thereof.
[3] 
Loading facilities.
[4] 
Service areas.
[5] 
Street line, including widths.
[6] 
Roadways, including widths.
[7] 
Pedestrian walks, including widths and types of surface.
[8] 
Landscaping designation, specific plantings.
[9] 
Screening.
[10] 
Signs, including proposed sizes, mounting heights, types and drafted design.
[11] 
Lighting, including plan location and detail information, size, type and wattage.
[12] 
Surfacing, indicating treatment of all surfaces.
[13] 
Existing trees on the site which are a caliper of six inches or larger.
[14] 
Wetlands.
[15] 
Drainage, including detailed design data, pipe sizing, etc.
[16] 
Stone walls.
[17] 
Topography at two-foot contour intervals.
[18] 
Sewage disposal, including detailed design information.
[19] 
Water supply.
[20] 
Curbing.
[21] 
Such other information as the Planning Board may reasonably request.
(c) 
The construction of the work as detailed on the site plan shall not deviate from the work shown on the approved site plan. Accordingly, the site plan shall contain a sufficient level of detail to ensure the constructability of the project. Supporting details and documentation shall be presented as part of the site plan submission.
(3) 
Incomplete applications for both the minor and major review shall not be accepted by the Planning Board. Following submission of a site plan to the Planning Board, the Board or its designee shall review the plan for completeness within three business days of the submission. Completeness shall be based on the requirements of this subsection. If the submission is determined incomplete by the Planning Board or its agent, notice will be mailed to the applicant by certified mail within three business days of the submission specifying the deficiencies.
C. 
The plan shall be prepared by a professional engineer, land surveyor, architect or landscape architect registered to practice in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and shall be submitted with 11 copies to the office of the Planning Board, together with an application form and a filing fee, if any.
D. 
Approval required.
(1) 
Site plan approval shall be granted upon determination by the Planning Board that the following are complied with. Any new building construction or other site alteration shall provide adequate access to each structure for fire and service equipment and adequate provision for utilities and stormwater drainage consistent with the functional requirements of the Southborough Planning Board's Rules and Regulations for the Subdivision of Land and shall be so designed that for the given location and type and extent of land use, the design of building form, building location, egress points, grading and other elements of the development shall be so as to:
(a) 
Minimize the volume of cut and fill, the number of removed trees six inches in caliper and larger, the length of removed stone walls, the area of wetland vegetation displaced, the extent of stormwater flow increase from the site, soil erosion and the threat of air or water pollution.
(b) 
Maximize pedestrian and vehicular safety and convenience within the site and egressing from it.
(c) 
Minimize obstruction of scenic views from publicly accessible locations.
(d) 
Minimize visual intrusion by minimizing the visibility of parking, storage or other outdoor service areas viewed from public ways or premises residentially used or zoned; minimizing glare from headlights through plantings or other screening; minimizing lighting intrusion through use of such devices as cutoff luminaires confining direct rays to the site; fixture mounting height not higher than 20 feet except adjacent to Route 9; and avoiding unreasonable departure from the character of building in the vicinity.
(2) 
The Planning Board shall adopt and from time to time amend reasonable regulations for the administration of these guidelines.
E. 
The Planning Board shall hold a public hearing on the application for site plan approval, with a written notice of the time and place of said hearing being given the applicant and the Board of Selectmen. The applicant is responsible for sending this notice to the certified abutters by certified mail return receipt requested, at least 10 days before the scheduled hearing. The Planning Board shall not act on the application until it has received and given due consideration to the recommendations of the Board of Selectmen or until 10 days have elapsed after the public hearing without receipt of the Selectmen's comments.
F. 
The Planning Board shall act on an application for site plan approval and shall notify, in writing, the applicant, the Board of Selectmen and the Building Inspector of its action within 60 days of the receipt of the application. Failure of the Planning Board to so act and to notify the applicant within said 60 days shall constitute approval of the site plan. The actions allowed by the site plan approval are authorized for a one-year period from the date of grant thereof. The applicant shall be granted a single one-year extension by applying to the Planning Board, in writing, prior to the date of expiration. If the actions permitted are not exercised or the approval not extended, they shall lapse, and a new application notice and hearing will be required.
G. 
Any person aggrieved by the action of the Planning Board on a site plan approval application may appeal said action to a Court of competent jurisdiction in accordance with M.G.L. c.40A, Section 17.
[Amended 5-22-2018 STM by Art. 3]
H. 
Minor departures from the site plan as approved may be authorized by the Building Inspector after approval of the Site Plan Review Committee if required by engineering or other circumstances not foreseen at the time of plan approval. Any change increasing the size of any building or structure, changing the location of any building, parking or access road by more than 10 feet or reducing landscaping or screening may be made only through review by the Planning Board following the same procedures as for an original submittal. Any departure must be requested, in writing, with the basis for the change given. Any change authorized shall be recorded on the file copy of the site plan with the Building Inspector's signature and the date.
I. 
The removal, fill or change of grade of earth materials, including soil, loam, sand or gravel, undertaken in order to construct or locate buildings, structures and such features accessory thereto as ways, driveways, areaways, walks or parking areas, and therefore exempt from regulations under Chapter 85 of this Code, is a part of construction and development process regulated by the Zoning Chapter. Except as necessary for the construction of detached one- or two-family dwellings and of features accessory thereto, the removal, fill or change of grade of earth materials for the purposes defined above shall be subject to approval under this section. Where the commencement of removal, fill or change of grade of earth materials precedes construction by three months or more, the submission and approval of the site plan may be undertaken in two stages, with the information for the first stage limited to property boundaries, existing and proposed topography at two-foot or lesser contour intervals, the character of the soil to be removed, added or relocated, the location and depth of any service and drainage conduits or pipes and the approximate location of any existing or proposed buildings, structures or physical features accessory thereto. Each stage shall be treated as a separate site plan for the purposes of this section, and the approval of Stage 1 of a site plan shall not be construed to assure the subsequent approval of Stage 2.
J. 
Compliance. The issuance of an occupancy permit will not be given prior to the satisfactory completion of all elements and conditions of the approved site plan. A temporary occupancy permit may be issued after the satisfactory completion of all items essential to public health and safety and sufficient bonding acceptable to the Planning Board is provided to the Town to cover all outstanding items.
[Added 4-14-1986 ATM by Art. 49; amended 4-8-1991 ATM by Art. 48]
Within the Village Business District, major site plan approval shall be by special permit from the Planning Board, subject to the procedural requirements and decision criteria of § 174-9, Special permit requirements, and § 174-10, Site plan approval, and the following in addition to the above:
A. 
Submittals must include floor plans and architectural elevations of all proposed buildings.
B. 
Design shall comply with the following guidelines, except as provided at Subsection C below:
(1) 
Scenic views, if any, visible from public ways should be preserved to the degree reasonably consistent with the given type and scale of use.
(2) 
Major dimensions of any building should be approximately parallel or perpendicular to one or more nearby streets, if within 100 feet of such street.
(3) 
The appearance of primary wall and roof materials should match that of materials commonly found on existing buildings within the Town.
(4) 
Except for buildings adjacent to Route 9, domestic scale should be produced through massing devices such as breaks in wall and roof planes and through design of architectural features.
(5) 
The building should not be made, in effect, a sign, through painting with bold patterns, checks or other graphics devices or use of unconventional building form.
(6) 
There should be some element of consistency with any buildings on abutting premises facing the same street, such as consistency in eave height, wall materials or window proportions.
C. 
A design may be approved despite noncompliance with one or more of the guidelines under Subsection B if one or more of the following are determined to be true.
(1) 
The proposal, despite not meeting the guidelines, is nevertheless appropriate to its context, considering the established character of the vicinity, the degree of departure of this proposal from that character and the functional or symbolic role the structure is proposed to play.
(2) 
The proposal will have minimal consequence for Town appearance because of its low public visibility, owing to obscure location or screening.
(3) 
No better compliance would be reasonably possible, taking into consideration the basic use and intensity of the proposal.
[Amended 4-14-1986 ATM by Art. 41; 4-14-1986 ATM by Art. 49; 4-10-2000 ATM by Art. 57]
A. 
Purpose. The Town of Southborough regulates and restricts the use of signs and other identification devices within the Town for the purpose of:
(1) 
Promoting public safety and convenience of the streets and roads, sidewalks and other pedestrian spaces, public property and private property within public view;
(2) 
Preserving for the present and future inhabitants the natural, architectural and historical assets and other qualities which distinguish the Town as a highly desirable community;
(3) 
Protecting business viability, economic opportunity, property values, educational values, aesthetic integrity, Village character, creativity and community appearance by exercising prudent control; and
(4) 
Encouraging compatibility and harmony with surrounding buildings, land and land uses.
B. 
Definitions. As used in section (§ 174-11), the following words and terms shall have and include the following meanings:
AGRICULTURAL SIGN
A sign which has wording that may be changed periodically to advertise products raised or grown principally on the premises.
AWNING SIGN
Any and every sign displayed on an awning or canopy. An "awning" or "canopy" is any device, fixed or retractable, of any material, which extends over or otherwise covers a sidewalk, courtyard, walkway, eating area, driveway or other area or space, whether that area or space is intended for pedestrians, vehicles or other purposes.
BANNER
Any and every sign whatever the nature of the material or manner of composition, message or design, frequently displayed on a pole or staff which can be freestanding or attached to a building or structure, and temporary or removable in nature. Official flags of governmental jurisdictions properly displayed shall not be considered as banners or otherwise considered as signs for the purposes of this Zoning Bylaw.
BUSINESS ESTABLISHMENT
Each separate place of business whether or not consisting of one or more buildings.
FACADE OF THE BUSINESS ESTABLISHMENT
That portion of the building wall facing a street or containing a public entrance, which corresponds to the height and width of the interior space rented or owned by the tenant of the business establishment.
HEIGHT
The maximum vertical distance measured from the finished grade to the highest point of the sign or its supporting structure, whichever is higher.
INTERNALLY ILLUMINATED SIGN
Each and every sign which utilizes translucent panels, canvas or other fabric, letters, devices including gas-filled luminous tubes or other similar components to create an image by allowing light to pass through.
LEGAL NONCONFORMING SIGN
Any nonconforming sign legally erected prior to the adoption of this section, or any amendment thereof.
MOVING SIGNS
Any and every sign any part of which moves, is designed to move or to be moved, by any means.
ROOF SIGN
Any and every sign located above, or projecting above, the apex of the roof or the top of a parapet wall of any building, or which is painted or otherwise attached or affixed to a roof.
SIGN
Any letter, word, symbol, drawing, picture, design, device, article or object that advertises, calls attention to or indicates any premises, persons, products, businesses or activities or that conveys or is intended to convey any message whatever the nature of the material and manner of composition or construction. (Historical date plaques and markers approved by the Historical Commission and flags and insignias of governmental jurisdictions shall not be considered signs except when displayed for the purpose of commercial promotion.)
STANDING SIGN
Any and every freestanding sign erected on or affixed to the land and includes any and every sign that is not attached to a building.
TEMPORARY SIGNS
Any and every sign which by its design and/or use is temporary in nature, frequently composed of paper, posterboard and/or cardboard or other material attached so as to be visible through windows and glass doors or otherwise displayed on a property, typically containing messages relative to sale, lease, rental or construction of property, garage or yard sales and similar occasional uses, special sales, bazaars, dinners or other events.
TRAFFIC SIGNS
Any sign limited solely to directing traffic within or setting out restrictions on the use of parking areas.
TRAILER OR VEHICLE SIGNS
For the purposes of this sign bylaw, a vehicle, motor vehicle or self-propelled vehicle shall be considered and regulated as a sign when or under such circumstances any such vehicle is not engaged in the usual business or work of the owner or lessee but is used for advertising purposes.
WALL SIGN
Any and every sign attached to a building and not considered to be a roof sign or window sign.
WINDOW SIGN
Any and every sign consisting of individual letters or graphics painted or otherwise similarly affixed directly to, or hanging behind, the glass surface of a window or door and designed to be visible from the outside of any building.
C. 
General provisions.
(1) 
Permit not required. The following types of signs do not require a permit from the Inspector of Buildings:
(a) 
Signs not exceeding four square feet in area and bearing only property numbers, or names of residents of premises.
(b) 
Flags and insignia of any government, except when displayed in connection with commercial promotion.
(c) 
Legal notices, identification information or direction signs erected by governmental bodies.
(d) 
Integral decorative or architectural features of buildings, except letters, trademarks, moving parts or moving lights.
(e) 
Signs directing and guiding traffic and parking on private property, but bearing no advertising matter.
(f) 
In accordance with MGL c. 94, § 295C, standard gasoline fuel pump signs on service station fuel pumps bearing thereon in usual size and form the name, type and price of the gasoline.
(g) 
Open/closed signs not exceeding two feet by three feet; one per business.
(h) 
Open flags, not exceeding three feet by five feet and not containing any promotional logos or advertising; one per business.
(i) 
Temporary signs.
(2) 
Basic requirements, all districts.
(a) 
The only signs allowed in the Town of Southborough are signs that advertise, call attention to or indicate the person occupying the premises on which the sign is erected or maintained or the business transacted thereon or that advertise the property itself or any part thereof as for sale or rent and which contain no other matter.
(b) 
Billboards and similar signs are specifically prohibited.
(c) 
Flashing, moving, changing message and animated signs are prohibited.
(d) 
No sign may be illuminated between 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. except signs identifying police or fire stations or businesses open to serve the public on site.
(e) 
"No hunting, fishing, etc.," signs exceeding one square foot are prohibited.
(f) 
Permits. No sign shall be erected or altered on the exterior of any building or on any land unless and until application for the erection or alteration of such sign has been filed with the Building Inspector, with such information and drawings as he may require, and permit for the erection of the sign has been issued by him.
(g) 
No sign may depict or represent any sexual conduct or state of sexual excitement as defined in MGL c. 272, § 31, nor shall any such representations or depictions be placed upon or within the windows or walls of the premises so as to be visible to the public from the exterior of the premises.
(h) 
Banners, pennants, streamers, ribbons, spinners and other moving, fluttering, revolving or changing devices and strings of lights shall not be used as signs or parts thereof, provided that lights may be used as part of a religious celebration not connected to commercial promotion, and further provided that banners or similar devices may be used for temporary political signs.
(3) 
Illumination of signs. Illumination shall be by white, steady, stationary light shielded and directed solely (or by silhouette) at the sign. The foregoing is applicable to signs exterior to a building and to permanent interior signs designed to be visible through a door or window. No sign may utilize translucent panels, canvas or other fabric, letters, devices or other similar components to create an image by allowing light to pass through, except for businesses fronting on Route 9. The light, whether internal or illuminating the sign from the outside, shall not be placed, directed or arranged so as to throw a beam of light, glare or reflection on any street or highway, walk or nearby properties of others in such a manner as to create a traffic hazard or nuisance. Illuminated signs are prohibited in residential and conservation districts.
(4) 
Maximum number of signs allowed. Unless otherwise provided herein there shall be not more than two of the four following types of signs: wall, window, standing or awning for each business establishment with the following exceptions:
(a) 
If a business establishment has more than one public entrance at street level there may be additional signs at each such entrance, other than the wall to which the principal sign is attached. Such signs shall not exceed 15 square feet or 10% of the facade of the business establishment, whichever is less. If a business establishment consists of more than one building, a secondary sign, not exceeding 15 square feet or 10% of the facade of the business establishment, whichever is less, may be affixed to a wall of each such building, not including the building to which the principal sign is attached.
(b) 
In addition to the foregoing sign or signs, one directory of the business establishments occupying a building may be attached to the exterior wall of the building at each public entrance to the building. Such directory shall not exceed an area determined on the basis on one square foot for each establishment occupying the building or six square feet in total area, whichever is less.
(5) 
Maximum area of signs allowed. For purposes of determining the maximum size limitations, any intermediary removable surface to which a sign is attached shall be deemed part of the sign; and any sign composed of separate letters, numbers or symbols cut into or attached to a wall or painted on or otherwise attached to an awning, canopy or window shall be deemed to the extreme limits of the sign. A two-sided sign, with messages on opposite sides (back-to-back), will be deemed to be one sign; a sign with faces at an angle to each other shall be deemed to consist of several signs, one for each direction faced. The sum of the areas of wall, window and awning signs of a business in the aggregate shall not exceed the lesser of the following two amounts:
(a) 
Ten percent of the facade of the business establishment.
(b) 
Fifty square feet in districts fronting on streets other than Route 9, or 75 square feet in districts fronting on Route 9.
(6) 
Nonconforming signs. Any legal nonconforming sign may continue to be maintained but shall not be enlarged, reworded, redesigned or altered in any way unless it is brought into conformity with these requirements. Any such sign which has been destroyed or damaged to such an extent that the cost of restoration would exceed 35% of the replacement value of the sign at the time of the destruction or damage shall not be repaired or rebuilt or altered unless in conformity with this section. The exemption herein granted shall terminate with respect to any sign which:
(a) 
Shall have been abandoned for six months or more;
(b) 
Advertises or calls attention to any products, businesses or activities which have not been carried on or sold for six months or more; or
(c) 
Shall not have been repaired or properly maintained within 60 days after notice to that effect has been given by the Inspector of Buildings.
(7) 
Construction and maintenance. No sign shall be painted or posted directly on the exterior surface of any wall or roof. All signs must be painted, posted or otherwise securely attached to a substantial intermediary removable surface which shall be securely attached to the building. The foregoing, however, shall not prevent installation of a sign consisting of individual letters or devices securely attached to the building. The material and construction of any sign and intermediary surface and the manner of attaching the sign to the intermediary surface and the intermediary surface to the wall of the building shall be in accordance with applicable provisions of the State Building Code. All signs, together with their structural elements, shall be kept in good repair and in proper state or preservation to the reasonable satisfaction of the Inspector of Buildings. The Inspector of Buildings may order the removal of any sign that is not maintained in accordance with the provisions of this Zoning Bylaw.
(8) 
Roof signs. No sign shall be erected or maintained on the roof of any building or structure in any district.
(9) 
Standing signs. No standing sign shall be erected if, in the opinion of the Building Inspector, it creates a safety hazard to vehicular or pedestrian traffic.
(10) 
Wall signs. A wall sign shall be parallel to or perpendicular to a wall of the building and shall not project beyond the face of any other wall of the building, or above the top of the wall to which attached. A wall sign shall not project more than one-foot, in the case of a sign parallel to the wall, or four feet in the case of a sign perpendicular to the wall, from the face of the wall to which attached, provided that in no case shall a perpendicular sign project into, on or over a public sidewalk, street or way.
(11) 
Temporary signs. Temporary signs shall be removed promptly after the sale, event or reason for the sign message has been concluded. Temporary signs shall not be maintained for more than a thirty-day period, except as may be otherwise specifically provided below, as determined by the Inspector of Buildings, unless proper sign permits have been obtained. A temporary sign erected for the purpose of the sale, lease, rental or construction of real estate is not subject to the thirty-day display limitation but shall be removed promptly after such sale, lease, rental or construction has been effected or completed. Temporary signs pertaining to construction shall not be erected prior to the commencement of work.
(12) 
Traffic signs. The regulations contained herein shall not apply to traffic signs not exceeding four square feet in area.
(13) 
Gasoline filling stations and garages. Gasoline filling stations and garages may, if they elect to do so, divide the principal sign area to which they are entitled into separate signs attached to and parallel to the wall to which the principal sign may be attached and indicating the separate operations or departments of the business; provided, however, that the total size of the separate signs shall not exceed the maximum size permitted under this section for a single exterior sign on such wall. Signs displayed on structural canopies over gasoline pumps or gasoline pump islands shall be regulated as wall signs.
(14) 
Agricultural signs. One sign not to exceed 32 square feet shall be allowed and the wording may be changed periodically to advertise products raised or grown principally on the premises.
(15) 
Awning signs. The following provisions shall apply to all awning signs:
(a) 
Awning signs may only be located at the first floor level and must be painted on or attached flat against the surface of the awning or canopy and shall not extend beyond the valance or any other part of the awning or canopy nor be attached to or displayed on the sides or underside;
(b) 
The area of an awning sign shall not exceed 25% of the surface area of the awning or canopy eligible for placement of signs;
(c) 
Awning signs shall not be back lit or internally illuminated; and
(d) 
Awning signs shall not be used in combination with wall signs except as provided below. An awning sign which consists of letters only, not more than eight inches in height and includes no other form of graphic, logo or symbol; and is located only on the valance of the awning or canopy and no other sign, graphic, logo or symbol is displayed on the awning or canopy; and does not occupy more than 50% of the horizontal length of the valance of the awning or canopy shall not be subject to the limitations of Subsection C, General Provisions, Subsection (4), Maximum number of signs allowed, and Subsection (5), Maximum area of signs allowed.
D. 
Sign regulations. (See notes at end of this Subsection D.)
Sign Type
Maximum Height
(feet)
Maximum Area
Maximum Number
Residential,1 Conservation Districts, Research, Scientific and Professional District
Standing or wall
6
4 sq. ft.
1 per lot
Temporary
6
6 sq. ft.
1 per lot
Business Village District
Standing
10
25 sq. ft.
1 per building
Wall
15
25 sq. ft.
1 per business
Awning
25% of awning or canopy2
1 per business
Temporary
10
15 sq. ft.
1 per building
Highway Business, Industrial, Industrial Park Districts fronting streets other than Route 9
Standing
15
75 sq. ft.
1 per lot
Wall
20
50 sq. ft.
1 per business
Window (permanent)
10 sq. ft.3
1 per business
Awning
25% of awning or canopy2
1 per business
Temporary window
25% of window4
Temporary
10
25 sq. ft.
1 per lot
Highway Business, Industrial, Industrial Park Districts fronting Route 9
Standing
25
100 sq. ft.
1 per lot
Wall
20
75 sq. ft.2
1 per business
Window (permanent)
10 sq. ft.3
1 per business
Awning
25% of awning or canopy2
1 per business
Temporary window
25% of window4
Temporary
10
25 sq. ft.
1 per lot
Municipal, state, federal or private educational institution, religious institution within a Residential District
Standing
6
10 sq. ft.
1 per lot
Wall
15
10 sq. ft.
1 per building
Awning sign
Not allowed
Temporary
6
12 sq. ft.
1 per lot
NOTES:
1 Residential development within other districts in Town must comply with the sign regulations for residential district.
2 Or 10% of the total area of the facade of the business establishment, whichever is less.
3 Or 10% of the total area of exterior area of exterior windows of the business establishment excluding doors, whichever is less.
4 Paper or posterboard only. Such signs shall not be placed on any window with a permanent window sign.
E. 
Special permits for signs.
(1) 
The Board of Appeals shall consider requests for special permits in accordance with §§ 174-9, 174-11 and 174-25 of this Zoning Bylaw. The Board of Appeals may grant a special permit for a sign not meeting limitations of sign height, maximum number of signs allowed, illuminations of signs, maximum area of signs allowed and minimum setback; provided, however, that the sign is otherwise in compliance with the provisions of this section. In no case, however, shall approval be granted for:
(a) 
A wall sign which exceeds in height the top of the wall;
(b) 
A sign in a Residential District, except that a special permit may be granted for a sign at a legal nonconforming use.
(c) 
A standing sign in districts other than Residential, Conservation, Research, Scientific and Professional Districts:
[1] 
Which exceeds in height:
[a] 
Fifteen feet in the Business Village Districts.
[b] 
Twenty feet in districts other than Business Village Districts fronting on streets other than Route 9.
[c] 
Twenty-five feet in districts other than Business Village Districts fronting on Route 9.
[2] 
Or exceeds in area:
[a] 
Thirty-five square feet in the Business Village Districts.
[b] 
Seventy-five square feet in districts other than Business Village Districts fronting on streets other than Route 9.
[c] 
Two hundred square feet in districts other than Business Village Districts fronting on Route 9.
(d) 
A wall sign in districts other Residential, Conservation, Research, Scientific and Professional Districts which exceeds in area:
[1] 
Thirty-five square feet in Business Village Districts.
[2] 
Seventy-five square feet in districts other than Business Village Districts fronting on streets other than Route 9.
[3] 
One hundred square feet in districts other than Village Business Districts fronting on Route 9.
(2) 
The Board of Appeals will not act on any special permit or variance application without first receiving a written report from the Planning Board. A favorable report of the Planning Board shall indicate that:
(a) 
Sign scale is determined to be in reasonable relation to development scale, viewer distance and travel speed and sign sizes on nearby structures.
(b) 
Sign size, shape and placement serves to define or enhance architectural elements of the building such as columns, sill lines, cornices and roof edges and do not unreasonably interrupt, obscure or hide them.
(c) 
Sign design is in harmony with other signage on the same or adjacent structures and provides reasonable continuity in mounting location and height, proportions and materials.
(d) 
Sign materials, colors, lettering style, illumination and form are reasonably compatible with building design, neighborhood context and use.
(e) 
Sign size, location, design and illumination are not judged to present a safety hazard to vehicular or pedestrian traffic. An unfavorable report of the Planning Board shall indicate which of the above criteria were not met and shall state what modifications to the sign or signs could be made to render a favorable report.
[Amended 4-8-1985 ATM by Art. 36; 4-14-1986 ATM by Art. 47; 4-26-1990 ATM by Art. 43]
A. 
General requirements. There shall be provided off-street parking and loading facilities in accordance with the requirements of this section on the same lot as the use to which they are accessory, except that parking for nonresidential uses may be provided on a contiguous lot in the same ownership and zoning district as the lot on which the principal building or use is located. The Building Inspector shall interpret and apply the requirements for parking and loading spaces. Loading or parking layout for nonresidential uses shall be shown on and approved as part of a site plan under the provisions of § 174-10.
B. 
Surfacing. Required vehicular use areas shall be paved with bituminous concrete unless serving a single-family dwelling. An alternative surface may be approved by the Planning Board upon its determination that drainage, erosion, siltation, dust and appearance will be satisfactorily controlled. Where an alternative to bituminous concrete is authorized by the Planning Board, the following shall be complied with:
(1) 
Access drives shall be paved with bituminous concrete or other pavement authorized by the Planning Board for at least 15 feet inside of the street or property line unless the street itself is not paved.
(2) 
Grading and materials selection shall assure that surface materials will not be carried into the street and that drainage is positively provided for.
(3) 
If there are eight or more parking spaces there shall be provisions for identifying individual spaces through use of segmented bumper strips or other similar permanent means.
C. 
Dimensional requirements.
(1) 
Loading. Each loading space shall be not less than 10 feet in width, 14 feet in height and of such length that a truck or trailer occupying the space shall be entirely in the loading space and shall not project into any street, vehicular accessway or pedestrian walk. The loading space may use common access driveways and aisles with parking spaces, where such access is adequate for both purposes. If located within 50 feet of a residence district or if used frequently at night, loading spaces shall be enclosed. Loading spaces shall not be located within the required front yard.
(2) 
Parking. Each parking space shall be at least 9 1/2 feet wide and 18 feet long, exclusive of aisles and maneuvering space; for parking at right angles to a central aisle, the width of the aisle shall not be less than 22 feet, and an equal width shall be provided at each end of a row of parking spaces; for angle or herringbone parking at 45° or 60° and one-way circulation, the width of aisles shall be consistent with the dimensions recommended by the Institute of Transportation Engineers, provided that for parking facilities for more than five cars, the total area shall be not less than 300 square feet times the number of parking spaces. Unobstructed access to and from a street shall be provided and shall not require backing out into a street. Two or more nonresidential uses may share a combined facility, provided that its continued availability is assured and the total number of spaces equals or exceeds the number required by this section. The number of parking spaces required by the Architectural Barriers Board located nearest to and to both sides of the entrance of a building used by the public and/or by employees shall be reserved for the exclusive use of handicapped persons and shall be identified by appropriate signs at each parking space and by the wheelchair symbol painted within each such parking space. Up to 25% of parking spaces dedicated to use by employees or occupants and not by the general public and up to 15% of such spaces for use by customers, visitors or general public may be reduced to not less than 17 feet by eight feet and marked as being reserved for compact cars only.
D. 
Loading requirements. Not fewer than the number of loading spaces indicated in the following table shall be provided:
Floor Area of Building or Structure
(square feet)
Retail Trade, Wholesale Trade, Storage, Manufacturing
Consumer Service Offices, Hotels, Institutions, Dormitories, Other Nonresidential Uses
5,000 to 15,000
1
0
15,001 to 50,000
1
1
50,001 to 100,000
2
1
100,001 to 150,000
3
2
150,001 to 300,000
4
3
Each additional 100,000 over 300,000
1 additional
Each additional 200,000 over 300,000
1 additional
E. 
Parking requirements. Off-street parking spaces shall be provided according to the following schedule, and not more than 25% of the required parking spaces, other than for dwellings, shall be located in the required front yard.
(1) 
Dwellings: two spaces for each dwelling unit containing one or two bedrooms, three spaces for each dwelling unit containing three or more bedrooms, plus one space for each 80 square feet of floor area devoted to a customary home occupation or a professional use.
(2) 
Hotels, motels, board or rooming houses and other places providing overnight accommodations: one space for each room accommodation, plus one space for each two employees, plus one space for each 400 square feet of public meeting area and restaurant.
(3) 
Restaurants and other places serving food or beverages: one space for each three seats, plus one space for each employee, provided that drive-in establishments shall instead provide one space for each 50 square feet of gross floor area, plus one space for each two employees.
(4) 
Schools and colleges: two spaces per classroom for elementary and intermediate; 2 1/2 spaces per classroom for secondary, and one space per two students beyond secondary; none to be fewer than one space per teacher and staff.
(5) 
Banks and libraries: one space for each 250 square feet of floor area in public use, plus one space for each 500 square feet of other gross floor area.
(6) 
Hospitals, nursing homes, homes for the aged. Hospitals: one space per bed; nursing homes: one space per two beds; homes for the aged: one space per 1 1/2 units.
(7) 
Theaters, membership clubs and places of amusement, recreation and assembly (public or private): one space per four seats.
(8) 
Retail stores and consumer service establishments: one space for each 150 square feet of gross floor area, exclusive of storage space.
(9) 
Gasoline service stations: two spaces for each lubrication pit, lift or bay, plus one space for each employee.
(10) 
Warehouses: one space for each 1,500 square feet of gross floor area.
(11) 
Medical and dental offices: one space per 200 square feet gross floor area.
(12) 
Industry, processing, manufacturing, assembly and research and development: one space for each 300 square feet of floor area, plus space for company-owned trucks and vans and the required loading spaces.
(13) 
All other offices and nonresidential uses: 3 1/2 spaces for each 1,000 square feet of gross floor area.
(14) 
Temporary reduction in the number of paved parking spaces. Whenever new or increased off-street parking spaces are required to be provided on premises subjected to a site plan review and approval by the Planning Board under the provisions of § 174-10 hereof and if, in the opinion of the Planning Board, based on evidence presented by the applicant, the full number of parking spaces will not be needed for at least three years, the Planning Board may, in its approval of the site plan, temporarily reduce the number of parking spaces paved, designated, striped and graded, subject to the following requirements:
[Amended 4-8-1991 ATM by Art. 47]
(a) 
The Planning Board shall have the right to review the temporary reduction every three years or whenever evidence is presented to it that such review is warranted and shall have the right to require the paving and development of additional parking spaces up to the full number required by this chapter.
(b) 
The applicant shall be required to provide the entire area called for by this chapter and shall landscape, plant with grass or shrubbery and maintain as open space any part thereof not needed for parking.
(c) 
In no case shall the number of parking spaces developed, paved, marked and available for parking be less than 60% of the total number of such spaces called for by this chapter, and no cars shall be parked on undeveloped reserved land, except in an emergency. The areas to be developed and paved and to be temporarily held as landscaped open space shall be clearly identified on the site plan, and their location and layout shall be consistent with § 174-10B, C and D. Anyone required to provide at least 12 parking spaces and wishing to take advantage of this temporary reduction provision shall proceed in accordance with the provisions of this subsection and of § 174-10 hereof, even though not otherwise subject to its requirements.
F. 
Egress.
(1) 
Any driveway likely to carry more than 200 trips per average business day must comply with the following unless the Board of Appeals grants a special permit for an alternative configuration, upon its determination that safety will be adequately protected, based on commonly employed engineering standards:
On Route 9
Other Locations
Exiting vehicle unobstructed sight distance at edge of traveled way
500 feet
200 feet
Driveway center-line separation from other driveways serving 200 plus trips
300 feet
100 feet
Driveway center-line separation from intersecting street sideline
150 feet
50 feet
Maximum driveway width unless greater width justified by engineered design
24 feet
18 feet
Curb radius
50 feet
25 feet
Acceleration/deceleration lanes required
Yes
No
(2) 
No existing parcel shall be divided into lots with frontage which would preclude meeting the driveway separation requirements, unless access rights-of-way are deeded to enable shared egress.
[Added 4-11-2005 ATM by Art. 40]
A. 
Purpose. This section recognizes the benefits of outdoor lighting and provides clear guidelines for its installation, so as to help maintain and complement Southborough's character. The intent of this section is to encourage lighting that provides safety, utility and security: prevent glare on public roadways; protect the privacy of residents; promote energy-efficient outdoor lighting; limit the total allowable illumination of lots located in the Town of Southborough; and to reduce atmospheric light pollution. Appropriately regulated, and properly installed, outdoor lighting will contribute to the safety and welfare of the residents of Southborough.
B. 
Applicability. Outdoor illumination by flood or spot luminaries rated at 900 lumens or more (which is approximately equal to one sixty-watt incandescent light bulb) or by any other luminaires rated at 1,800 lumens or more (which is approximately equal to one one-hundred-twenty-watt incandescent light bulb) shall be subject to the provisions of this section, with the following exceptions: emergency lighting; hazard warning; temporary decorative or holiday lighting or public roadway illumination. It shall also not apply to any luminaire intended solely to illuminate any freestanding sign, flag or the walls of any building, but such luminaire shall be shielded so that its direct light is confined to the surface of such sign, flag or building.
(1) 
The replacement of existing fixtures shall be subject to the provisions of this section; however, the replacement of existing nonconforming lamps or fixtures with the same or lower output nonconforming lamps or fixtures is exempted.
(2) 
The Planning Board, in performing review pursuant to § 174-10, Site plan approval, may determine that special circumstances of the site, context or design make an alternative lighting design at least equally effective in meeting the purposes of this section and, in such cases, may modify the requirements of this section.
C. 
Definitions. For the purposes of this section, the following terms shall be defined as indicated below. Although set forth here for convenience, the terms shall have the same effect as if in § 174-2 of this Bylaw.
FIXTURE
The assembly that houses a lamp or lamps, and which may include a housing, a mounting bracket or pole socket, a lamp holder, a ballast, a reflector or mirror, and/or a refractor, lens or diffuser lens.
FULL CUTOFF
A luminaire designed with an opaque shield surrounding and extending below the lamp, such that no direct light is emitted above a horizontal plane.
GLARE
Light emitted from a luminaire with intensity great enough to produce annoyance, discomfort or a reduction in a viewer's ability to see, and in extreme cases causing momentary blindness.
LAMP
The component of a luminaire that produces the actual light.
LIGHT TRESPASS
The shining of direct light produced by a luminaire beyond the boundaries of the lot on which it is located.
LUMEN
A measure of light energy generated by a light source. One footcandle is one lumen per square foot. For purposes of this bylaw, the lumen output shall be the initial lumen output of a lamp, as rated by the manufacturer.
LUMINAIRE
A complete lighting system, including a lamp or lamps and a fixture.
D. 
Exterior lighting plan. Applications subject to the provisions of § 174-10, Site plan approval, shall submit a lighting plan which shall include the following information, except to the extent waived by the Planning Board. All other lighting not subject to the provisions of said § 174-10 does not require a lighting plan but shall meet the standards as set forth in this section, unless as may otherwise be provided herein. The lighting plan shall include the following information:
(1) 
Location, orientation and type of outdoor luminaire, including the height of the luminaire, both existing and proposed;
(2) 
Luminaire manufacturer's specification data, including lumen output and photometric data showing cutoff angles, as well as a description of all illuminating devices, fixtures, lamps, supports, reflectors, both existing and proposed; this may include, but is not limited to, catalog cuts and illustrations by manufacturers;
(3) 
Type of lamp, such as metal halide, compact fluorescent, high pressure sodium;
(4) 
Photometric plan showing the intensity of illumination expressed in footcandles at ground level within the interior of the property and at the property boundaries;
(5) 
Evidence that the plan complies with light trespass restrictions as set forth herein.
E. 
Flickering and flashing lights. No flickering or flashing lights shall be permitted. Processes, such as arc welding, which create light flashes shall be confined within buildings or shielded to prevent either direct glare or flashing.
F. 
Wall-mounted fixtures. In nonresidential districts, a luminaire attached to the exterior of a building or structure for area lighting shall be mounted no higher than 15 feet above grade and shall be shielded to control glare. "Wal-pac" lighting fixtures are prohibited.
G. 
Pole-mounted fixtures. Pole-mounted exterior lighting fixture types are defined and restricted as follows:
(1) 
Type A: no light cutoff.
(2) 
Type B: luminaire shielded such that peak candlepower is at an angle of 75° or less from straight down, and essentially no light is emitted above the horizontal.
(3) 
Type C: luminaire shielded such that total cutoff is at less than 90° from straight down, and no light source is in direct view of an observer five feet above the ground at any point off the premises.
H. 
Pole-mounted fixtures height limitation. Illustrations of pole-mounted exterior lighting fixture types are shown in Chart I herein. Pole-mounted fixtures shall not exceed the applicable pole-mounted height limitation set forth in Chart II in any district. The Type A pole-mounted exterior lighting fixture is prohibited in all nonresidential districts, unless equipped with shields.
CHART I. ILLUSTRATIONS
CHART II. POLE MOUNTING HEIGHT LIMITATIONS
Maximum Luminaire Mounting Height
(feet above grade)*
"District" is that in which fixtures are located.
District
Residential
Nonresidential
Fixture Type A
10
Not allowed (unless shielded)
Fixture Type B
15
20
Fixture Type C
20
20
* Note: Feet above grade refers to the overall average grade of the area being illuminated.
I. 
Ceiling-mounted fixtures. In nonresidential districts, luminaires mounted on an exterior ceiling such as under a canopy shall be mounted with the refractor or lens flush with or recessed in the ceiling or fixture.
J. 
Lighting levels. Any luminaire with a lamp or lamps rated at a total of 1.800 lumens or more (which is approximately equal to one one-hundred-twenty-watt incandescent light bulb) and all flood or spot luminaires rated at 900 lumens or more (which is approximately equal to one 60-watt incandescent light bulb) shall not emit any direct light above a horizontal plane through the lowest direct-light-emitting part of the luminaire. If any spot or flood luminaire rated 900 lumens or less is directed or focused such as to cause direct light from the luminaire to be cast toward residential buildings on adjacent or nearby land, or to create glare perceptible to persons operating motor vehicles on public ways, the luminaire shall be redirected or its light output controlled as necessary to eliminate such conditions. The Planning Board reserves the right to limit and regulate the amount of illumination on a project site between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 as, while understanding the need for safety and security lighting.
K. 
Light trespass limitations. There shall be no light trespass by a luminaire beyond the property boundaries of the lot on which it is located, except as within a street right-of-way for which there shall be no limit.
[Amended 4-14-1986 ATM by Art. 42; 4-26-1990 ATM by Art. 42; 4-9-2001 ATM by Art. 64; 4-11-2005 ATM by Art. 39]
A. 
Purpose and applicability.
(1) 
Purpose. The purpose of this section is to preserve and protect the community's ecological resources and to improve the appearance, environment, character, and value of the total community; and to protect nearby properties, thereby promoting the public health, safety and general welfare. It is intended to establish minimum standards for the design of landscapes for all land development projects requiring Planning Board approval. This section also ensures that any development will make landscaping an integral part of that plan.
(2) 
Applicability. The requirements of this section shall apply as specified below to any new building, addition, or change of use in an existing structure that requires a parking increase of five or more spaces, or is subject to site plan review by the Planning Board. In performing site plan review under § 174-10, the Planning Board may authorize alternatives to the following specifications, taking into consideration existing vegetation, topography, soils and other site conditions, provided that equivalent screening, shading and articulation are achieved.
(3) 
Exceptions. The requirements of this section do not apply to developments or renovations in the Business Village District. However, the Planning Board may require landscaping as part of the site plan or special permit application within the Business Village District.
B. 
Landscape standards and specifications.
(1) 
All submissions for projects subject to this section shall include a comprehensive landscape plan and planting schedule.
(2) 
The developer shall furnish and install all plant materials listed on the approved landscaping plan.
(3) 
Plant materials shall conform to the requirements described in the latest edition of American Standard for Nursery Stock, which is published by the American Association of Nurserymen.
(4) 
Shade trees must be a minimum of three inches in caliper six inches above grade, be of a species common in the area and be ones which reach an ultimate height of at least 30 feet. Ornamental trees must be a minimum of eight feet at the time of planting. (Eight feet from the top of the root ball to the top of the tree). Shrubs must be at least 36 inches in height at the time of building occupancy, reach an ultimate height of at least five feet and be of a species common in the area.
(5) 
Do not use staking materials unless absolutely necessary. If staking is necessary, then the developer/property owner must remove staking materials after one full growing season.
(6) 
Property owners ensure the survival and health of required trees. If any plant material dies, the property owner must replace it within 180 days.
(7) 
All plant materials required by this chapter shall be maintained in a healthful condition. Any and all fences required for screening shall be properly maintained.
(8) 
All planting areas shall be mulched with a three- to four-inch layer of bark mulch or other similar material to cover the complete planting area. However, in no case shall more than 25% of the planting area be strictly bare mulch.
(9) 
A permanent water supply system, or other acceptable watering method, shall be provided for all planting areas. In order to protect the Town's water supply, and encourage sound landscaping practices, the Town of Southborough recommends sustainable watering systems, such as: rainwater recycling systems, automatic shut-off devices, drought-tolerant native plant material, and careful irrigation scheduling, among others.
(10) 
Plantings.
(a) 
Plantings shall consist of at least one tree per 40 linear feet of planting area length, except one tree per 20 linear feet of street planting area abutting Route 9, and at least one shrub per three feet. Plantings preferably will be grouped, not evenly spaced, and shall be located or trimmed to avoid blocking egress visibility. The planting area shall be unpaved except for access drives and walks essentially perpendicular to the area and shall be located wholly within the lot.
(b) 
Applicants are encouraged to specify salt-tolerant species for street trees to prevent early plant loss due to winter road salt.
(c) 
Invasive plants, as defined by the Massachusetts Invasive Plant Group, are "plants that have spread into native or minimally managed plant systems in Massachusetts. These plants cause economic or environmental harm by developing self sustaining populations and becoming dominant and/or disruptive to those systems." (Under this definition all synonyms, species, subspecies, varieties, forms, and cultivars of that species are included unless proven otherwise by a process of scientific evaluation.) The Town of Southborough encourages the use of native species in all landscaping plans. Please note that many of the invasive species listed below have native counterparts that could be considered.
(d) 
The following invasive species of plants are prohibited from being planted:
Ailanthus altissirna
Tree of heaven
Berberis thunbergil
Japanese barberry
Celastrus orbiculatus
Asian or, Asiatic bittersweet, oriental bittersweet
Elacagnus umbellata
Autumn olive
Frangula alnus
European buckthorn, glossy buckthorn
Lonicera x bella Zabel [morrowii x tatarica]
Bell's honeysuckle
Lonicera japonica
Japanese honeysuckle
Lonicera morrowili
Morrow's honeysuckle
Lythrum salicaria
Purple loosestrife
Phragmites australis (Ceav.) Trin. ex Steud.
Common reed
Rhamnus cathartica
Common buckthorn
Robinia psendoacacia
Black locust
Rosa multiflora
Multiflora rose
Acer platanoides
Norway maple
Acer pseudoplatanus
Sycamore maple
Euonymus alatus
Burning bush
Ligustrum species
Privet
Spiraea japonica
Japanese spirea
C. 
Street planting area. Street planting is required for all nonresidential premises. Street plantings at the front of lots shall contribute to the creation of an impression of a separation of the street and the developed area of the site without necessarily eliminating visual contact between them. Street plantings adjoining or facing residential uses or residential zoning districts shall provide the strongest possible visual barriers between uses at the pedestrian level and a sense of separation. A landscaped buffer strip shall be a minimum of 15 feet in depth. The Planning Board may reduce or modify this requirement if, in their judgment, strict compliance would create a substantial hardship due to existing conditions such as lot size, location of existing buildings, or environmental conditions. Also refer to Subsection H, Existing vegetation.
D. 
Side and rear line planting area. A landscape buffer strip a minimum of 10 feet in width shall abut all side and rear property lines.
E. 
Vehicular use area plantings. All new or expanded parking lots of five or more spaces shall be required to comply with this section. If an existing parking lot is expanded or improved to increase the number of spaces by five or more, it shall comply with this section within the expanded or improved portion.
(1) 
Trees shall be planted at a rate of two shade trees or three ornamental trees for every 10 spaces or fraction thereof.
(2) 
Required trees shall be located within or adjacent to parking lots as tree islands, medians, and at the end of parking bays, traffic delineators, or between rows of parking spaces in a manner such that no parking space is located more than 60 feet from a tree.
(3) 
Planting areas within parking areas shall provide a minimum of 81 square feet per tree with a minimum inside dimension of nine feet and a minimum prepared depth of 18 inches.
(4) 
The exterior perimeter of all vehicular use areas shall be planted with a buffer strip at least five feet in width, excluding accessways. Any vehicular use area abutting a lot that is residentially used or zoned shall be planted with a buffer strip at least 10 feet in width and shall be supplemented with an opaque fence or wall at least six feet high, unless there is vegetation sufficiently dense to effectively obscure vision. Trees and soil plots shall be so located as to provide visual relief and wind interruption within the parking area and to assure safe patterns of internal circulation.
Ratios of Parking Spaces to Trees
(choose one column of trees only)
# of Parking
Spaces
# of
Shade
Trees
or # of
Ornamental
Trees
or # of Mixed
10
2
3
3
15
3
5
4
20
4
6
5
25
5
8
6
30
6
9
7
35
7
11
8
40
8
12
9
45
9
14
10
50
10
15
11
55
11
17
13
60
12
18
14
65
13
20
15
70
14
21
16
75
15
23
18
80
16
24
19
85
17
26
20
90
18
27
21
95
19
29
23
100
20
30
24
(5) 
To determine the number of trees needed for a number of parking spaces not shown on the chart above, use the following formulas (choose one only):
(a) 
Shade trees: number of spaces x 20%.
(b) 
Ornamental trees: number of spaces x 30%.
(c) 
Mix of both: number of spaces x 25%.
F. 
Zoning district boundary planting area. A landscaped buffer strip, a minimum of 20 feet in width, is required on any nonresidential premises along the full length of any boundary abutting property that is residentially used or zoned, except that in the Industrial Park District (IP) the buffer strip shall be a minimum of 50 feet in width. The buffer strip shall contain existing vegetation and/or plantings that are sufficiently dense to adequately screen adjacent residential properties.
G. 
Berms. When berms are used to meet the requirements for a buffer strip, they shall be planted with living vegetation. The minimum top width shall be five feet with a minimum slope of 3:1. In no case shall more than 25% of the berm planting area be strictly bare mulch or non-living material.
H. 
Existing vegetation. Wherever possible, the above requirements shall be met by retention of existing plants. If located within 25 feet of a street, no existing tree of six inches in caliper or greater (measured four feet above grade), dense hedgerow of four or more feet in both depth and height or existing earth berm providing similar visual screening shall be removed or have grade changed more than one-foot unless dictated by public health, access safety or identification of the premises.
I. 
Exceptions. Where plant materials as required would harmfully obstruct a scenic view, substitution of additional low level plantings which will visually define the street edge or property line may be authorized, provided that proposed buildings are also designed and located to preserve that scenic view.
J. 
Site distance restrictions. When an accessway intersects a public street or another access way, required plantings shall conform to the requirements of unobstructed site distance as outlined in the parking and loading regulations (§ 174-12F).
K. 
Nonconforming landscaping and screening.
(1) 
Any improvement along the property boundary, including landscaping, screening and fencing, legally erected and conforming to the requirement of this chapter when so erected, may continue to be maintained, even though as a result of changes to this chapter the boundary improvements no longer conform to its requirements, provided that such boundary improvements shall not be enlarged, redesigned or altered except so as to make them conform to said requirements, and further provided that any such boundary improvements which have been destroyed or damaged to such an extent that the cost of restoration would exceed 50% of the replacement value of the boundary improvements at the time of destruction or damage, shall not be repaired, rebuilt or altered, except so as to make said boundary improvements conform to the requirements of this chapter.
(2) 
The exemption for nonconforming landscaping and screening herein granted shall terminate with respect to any boundary improvements which shall:
(a) 
Have been abandoned; or
(b) 
Not have been repaired or properly maintained for at least 60 days after written notice to that effect has been given by the Building Inspector.
[Added 4-14-1986 ATM by Art. 46]
A. 
Applicability. Any use which is designated in § 174-8 as being subject to this article requires concept plan approval by Town Meeting prior to being acted upon for special permit approval. Approval shall be by two-thirds' vote of the Town Meeting and may be made with conditions or limitations. Special permits shall then be required and shall be approved by the special permit granting authority only upon determination by that authority that the proposal is consistent with the approved concept plan or, in the event of an inconsistency, that the departure is necessitated by changed conditions or earlier error and that the inconsistency does not result in less beneficial development, based on the considerations of Subsection B below.
B. 
Considerations. Compliance of the proposal with the considerations of § 174-9, Special permit requirements, shall be reported to the Town Meeting by the Planning Board and shall be the basis for subsequent special permit approval.
C. 
Procedures.
(1) 
Submittals. Five copies of the concept plan shall be filed with the Planning Board.
(2) 
Concept plan contents. A concept plan should consist of the following:
(a) 
A schematic development plan, indicating boundaries of the lot, buildings, roads, drives, parking, reserved open space, existing topography and proposed grading, areas of retained vegetation and proposed planting areas, and a locus plan showing relation to nearby streets, zoning district boundaries and water bodies.
(b) 
Floor plans and elevations of all existing and proposed structures.
(c) 
Materials indicating the proposed ultimate floor area in each use; time schedule for development; service improvements proposed at the developer's and those anticipated at the Town's expense.
(d) 
An estimate of peak hour trips on to and off of the site.
(e) 
Analysis indicating degree of consistency with each of the considerations of § 174-9, Special permit requirements.
D. 
Pre-Town Meeting hearing. Prior to Town Meeting action, the Planning Board shall hold a public hearing on the concept plan with timing, notice and procedures the same as those required for a hearing on a Zoning Bylaw amendment. The Planning Board shall report its recommendation to the Town Meeting, with a copy of the concept plan and the recommendation to be filed with the Town Clerk not less than 14 days prior to the Town Meeting vote on the concept plan.
E. 
Special permit. Application for an initial special permit must be made not more than 12 months after the Town Meeting approval of the concept plan.
[Added 4-14-1986 ATM by Art. 36; amended 4-14-1986 ATM by Art. 38; 4-13-1987 ATM by Art. 42; 4-30-1990 ATM by Arts. 48, 49; 4-8-1991 ATM by Art. 53; 4-10-1995 ATM by Art. 45]
A. 
Applicability.
(1) 
Special permit option. Major residential development, that is, the creation of eight or more lots or construction of eight or more dwelling units within an eight-year period from or on a property or set of contiguous properties in common ownership as of January 1, 1986, is allowed either (at the applicant's option):
[Amended 4-15-2004 ATM by Art. 45; 10-7-2013 STM by Art. 9]
(a) 
With a special permit from the Planning Board, as indicated in § 174-8, Schedule of Use Regulations, with applicants applying under this section required to concurrently file the application with the Southborough Housing Opportunity Partnership Committee (SHOPC); or
(b) 
By right, commonly referred to as "conventional" development [and without the flexible development option available only with the special permit option in Subsection A(1)(a) above], provided that the plan conforms to the State Subdivision Control Law, to other applicable state and Town laws and regulations, to the recommendations of the Board of Health and to the Planning Board's regulations relative to the subdivision of land.
(2) 
Repetitive subdivision and phasing of large properties.
[Amended 4-10-2006 ATM by Art. 43]
(a) 
Land outside a major residential development. Where a by-right subdivision of fewer than eight lots (that is, a development under the threshold size for a major residential development) is first created on one portion of a property, thereby leaving another portion of the same property remaining undeveloped, and if the applicant later desires to subdivide this remaining portion thereby creating eight or more lots overall within the eight-year period [as described in Subsection A(1) above], then the applicant may do so by applying for a special permit for a major residential development for the remaining portion. On large properties to be developed in phases, the applicant may apply for more than one special permit with no time limit.
(b) 
Lots inside a major residential development. Lots created inside a major residential development, and made a part of the development, may not be further subdivided within eight years except by amending the original special permit.
(3) 
Flexible development option for small properties. Except as provided below, a development creating fewer than eight units does not require approval of a special permit, because it is below the threshold size. However, if an applicant wants to take advantage of this section's special features (such as flexible development) for a development of fewer than eight lots, then the applicant may do so by applying for a special permit. In this case, all requirements of this section shall apply as if the development was a major residential development, with one exception, that affordable housing shall not be required under Subsection E.
[Amended 4-10-2006 ATM by Art. 43]
(4) 
Exceptions. The above requirements shall not be applicable if the lots are restricted from residential use.
(5) 
Subdivision approval. Subsequent to, or in conjunction with the granting of the special permit, compliance with the rules and regulations regarding the subdivision of land must be met.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 244, Subdivision of Land.
B. 
Objectives. The objectives of the special permit for a major residential development are to:
(1) 
Allow for greater flexibility and creativity in the design of residential developments.
(2) 
Encourage the permanent preservation of open space, agricultural and forestry land and other natural resources.
(3) 
Maintain the Town of Southborough's traditional New England rural character and land use pattern in which small villages contrast with open space and farmland.
(4) 
Encourage more affordable and diverse housing types.
(5) 
Protect scenic vistas.
(6) 
Preserve unique and significant natural and historical resources.
(7) 
Facilitate the construction and maintenance of streets, utilities and public services in a more economical and efficient manner.
(8) 
Encourage a less sprawling form of development.
(9) 
Encourage the development of passive and active recreation facilities.
[Added 4-12-1999 ATM by Art. 65]
C. 
Application requirements. The application requirements for the special permit for a major residential development are as follows:
(1) 
Preliminary meeting. Prior to filing an application, the applicant shall meet with the Planning Board in order to promote better communication and avoid misunderstanding.
(2) 
Intent of alternative plans. Applications for a special permit for major residential development shall include two plans: a conventional plan and a flexible plan. The intent of this section is to approve the flexible plan wherever appropriate because the flexible plan is, in general, more capable than the conventional plan of meeting the objectives listed in Subsection B, as well as the design criteria listed in Subsection G(2). The purpose of the conventional plan is simply to establish the total number of lots or units allowed on the site, without bonuses, and consequently the number of lots allowed in the flexible plan, as provided in Subsection D(1).
(3) 
Submission materials. Applicants for major residential development shall file with the Planning Board seven copies of the following, prepared by an interdisciplinary team, including a registered land surveyor, a professional engineer and a registered architect or landscape architect:
(a) 
Plans. The conventional and flexible plans described above, conforming to the information requirements for a preliminary subdivision plan under subdivision regulations of the Planning Board.[2]
[2]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 244, Subdivision of Land.
(b) 
Natural conditions. Such plans shall also indicate:
[1] 
Topography, both existing and proposed.
[2] 
Existing wetland boundaries, which shall be delineated by registered professionals qualified under MGL c. 131, § 40, and/or Chapter 170, Wetlands Protection.
[3] 
Any critical areas, scenic views and vistas, as specified in Subsection F.
(c) 
Sewage disposal.
[1] 
If septic systems are proposed, then the submission shall include the results of soil evaluations and percolation tests at the rate of one every five acres, but in no case fewer than five per major residential development. Soil evaluations shall be located to the satisfaction of the Planning Board so as to indicate the buildability of areas proposed either for development or for bonused reservation under Subsection F.
[2] 
If alternative sewage treatment systems are proposed, then the applicant shall meet with the Board of Health prior to submission to the Planning Board, in order to establish the submission requirements of the Board of Health for such a system.
(d) 
Comparative analysis. A written statement as to which of the two plans (conventional or flexible) is preferred by the applicant. In addition, a brief written comparison of the impacts of a flexible development plan versus a conventional development plan. This comparison should discuss the specific site characteristics which make the preferred plan the best development option, (in the opinion of the applicant), based on the design criteria for major residential development in Subsection G(2).
(e) 
Other information. Any additional information necessary to make the determinations and assessments cited in Subsections F and G.
D. 
The Planning Board may authorize flexible development within a major residential development, with reduced requirements for the area and frontage of individual lots not having frontage on an existing public way, provided that the following are complied with:
[Amended 4-8-1996 ATM by Art. 52]
(1) 
Number of lots or units. The number of lots or units, excluding any bonus lots or units allowed under Subsection F, shall not exceed the number of lots in the conventional plan which shall be in full conformance with zoning, subdivision regulations and health codes. The Planning Board shall consider the recommendations of the Board of Health, the Conservation Commission and the Department of Public Works of the Town of Southborough in making said determination.
(2) 
General design criteria. Refer to Subsection G(2).
(3) 
Shape and dimension of lots. Provisions in § 174-8, Schedule of Use Regulations, governing the shape and dimensions of lots, shall apply when calculating the number of lots allowed in a conventional plan, as required by Subsection D(1) above. However, these provisions shall not apply when creating new lots within a flexible plan, unless otherwise specified in this section. The dimensional requirements for flexible lots are specified in Subsection D(4) below.
(4) 
Single-family requirements. The following provisions shall only apply to detached single-family dwellings on their own individual lots. Where more than one detached single-family dwelling is on the same lot (for example, single-family condominiums), then they shall be treated as multifamily dwellings for the purpose of this section, and they shall be governed by the provisions of Subsection D(5) below.
(a) 
Site with individual septic systems on each lot.
[1] 
Lot area. In order to ensure adequate lot area for individual septic systems, the minimum lot area shall be 2/3 of the minimum required in § 174-8, Schedule of Use Regulations, for each zoning district.
[2] 
Lot frontage. The minimum lot frontage in all zoning districts shall be 80 feet, except as follows. Lots located on the turnaround of a dead-end street shall have a minimum frontage of 50 feet, provided that a front building line is designated on the plan for such a lot, and also provided that the width of the lot at this building line is at least equal to the minimum frontage requirement.
[3] 
Front yard. Front yards shall be staggered to provide a variety in size of such yards. In all zoning districts, the minimum average of all front yards shall be 25 feet; however, no front yard shall be less than 20 feet.
[4] 
Side yard. The minimum side yard shall be 20 feet in the Residence A District and 10 feet in all other districts; provided, however, that dwellings on abutting lots shall be no closer than 30 feet which may be accomplished by staggering or other means.
[5] 
Rear yard. In all zoning districts the minimum rear yard shall be 40 feet or 30 feet if backing up to common open space.
[6] 
Setback lines. The front, side and rear setback lines shall be shown on the definitive subdivision plan.
[7] 
Open space. In all zoning districts, a minimum of 10% of the overall site area shall be preserved in a natural state, exclusive of wetlands, and 25% overall shall be dedicated as common open space.
[8] 
Common areas. Refer to Subsection G(2) for design criteria for common areas.
(b) 
Site with alternative sewage treatment systems. Based upon the reduced need for land on each lot if individual septic fields are no longer required and the benefits of consolidating this land into common preserved open space, the Planning Board may, at its discretion, approve the following:
[1] 
Lot area. The minimum lot area shall be 1/3 of the minimum required in § 174-8, Schedule of Use Regulations, for each zoning district. The reduction in lot area shall not be used to increase the total number of lots permitted in the overall site. All the site area saved through reduction in lot area shall be dedicated as common land or dedicated to the Town.
[2] 
Lot frontage. The minimum lot frontage in all zoning districts shall be 65 feet, except as follows: Lots located on the turnaround of a dead-end street shall have a minimum frontage of 50 feet, provided that a front building line is designated on the plan for such a lot, and also provided that the width of the lot at this building line is at least equal to the minimum frontage requirement.
[3] 
Yards. The minimum yard dimensions shall be the same as for lots with septic systems, as provided under Subsection D(4)(a) above.
[4] 
Setback lines. The front, side and rear setback lines shall be shown on the definitive subdivision plan.
[5] 
Open space. In all zoning districts, a minimum of 20% of the site area shall be preserved in a natural state, exclusive of wetlands, and 35% overall shall be dedicated as common open space.
[6] 
Common areas. Refer to Subsection G(2) for design criteria for common areas.
(5) 
Multifamily requirements. The Planning Board may authorize inclusion of multifamily dwellings within a flexible development, subject to the following, unless authorized as housing for the elderly under § 174-9H. Where more than one single-family detached dwelling is on the same lot, (for example, single-family condominiums), they shall be treated as multifamily dwellings for the purpose of this section and governed by the provisions of this subsection.
(a) 
Number of dwelling units. The number of dwelling units allowed shall be governed by the provisions of Subsection D(1). More than one structure may be allowed on a lot. § 174-8C(2) shall not apply.
(b) 
Types of units. To assure internal diversity and continuity with surrounding development, single-family dwellings (whether on their own individual lots or on a shared lot) are required within a multifamily development. Not more than 2/3 of the dwelling units on any parcel developed subject to these provisions shall be in multifamily dwellings containing two or more units. (Note: Housing for the elderly is not governed by this section.)
(c) 
Layout of buildings. To maintain the visual scale of the community, each multifamily dwelling unit shall have its own exterior entrance; there shall be not more than four dwelling units in any structure, and the multifamily structures shall be clustered in groups, with not more than 16 dwelling units in any group. Buildings within groups shall normally be separated from each other by not less than twice the required side yard, and there shall be not less than 1,000 feet separation between dwellings in any such group and any other multifamily dwellings on or off the premises, unless the Planning Board authorizes a reduction of up to 1/3 in such requirements, upon its determination that doing so serves the objectives of the bylaw.
(d) 
Visual buffers. Visual separation from nearby premises shall be assured through providing yards of double the usually required dimension between any multifamily structure or parking area for six of more cars and the boundaries of the major residential development, and through having any exterior lighting shielded and mounted not more than 15 feet high.
(e) 
To assure environmental benefit from the compact development which multifamily development facilitates, the site area which shall be preserved in a natural state, exclusive of wetlands, shall be a minimum of 10% and shall increase in direct proportion to the percentage of multifamily units, up to a maximum requirement of 20% preserved area. In addition, a minimum of 35% overall shall be dedicated as common open space. Where appropriate, open space not to be preserved in its natural state shall be utilized for recreation to serve the needs of the Town.
[Amended 4-12-1999 ATM by Art. 65]
E. 
Affordable housing.
[Amended 4-15-2004 ATM by Art. 45]
(1) 
Provision of affordable units.
(a) 
Number of units to be provided. All developments including a residential component which are subject to this section shall be required to set aside a minimum of 12.5% of the total number of dwelling units provided as affordable housing.
(b) 
Fractions. If, when applying the percentage to the total number of units to determine the number of affordable units, the resulting number of affordable units includes a fraction of a unit, this fraction, if 1/2 or greater, shall be rounded up to the next whole number. If the resulting number of affordable units includes a fraction of a unit less than 1/2, the fraction shall be rounded down to the next whole number.
(c) 
Sale, lease or rental of units to low-income households. Units set aside for sale, lease or rental to low-income households shall be restricted for occupancy by qualified households that meet the definition of "low-income" set forth in this bylaw.
(d) 
Affordability of rental and ownership units. Affordable rental and ownership units shall serve low-income households.
(e) 
Relationship to the affordable housing inventory. It is intended that the affordable housing units sewing low-income households that result from this bylaw be considered as local initiative units in compliance with the requirements of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development, as required for the ten-percent statutory requirement under MGL c. 40B. A "low-income household" is defined as having a total household or family income between 51% and 80% of the median income for the Boston Standard Metropolitan Statistical Area, as set forth in regulations promulgated from time to time by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, or by a similar federal agency created to replace it, as adopted by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development.
(f) 
Relationship to public funding programs. Developers may participate in public subsidy programs and still meet the requirements of this section. Such participation will be subject to the approval of the subsidizing agency and to the unit price limitations of the funding program as well as those required by this section. In case of conflicting price limitations, the lower price requirement shall prevail.
(g) 
Relationships to other organizations. Subject to the approval of the Southborough Housing Opportunity Partnership Committee and the applicable subsidizing agency, developers may elect to work with a local nonprofit housing provider, such as the Southborough Housing Authority, to distribute, maintain or operate the units in accordance with the requirements and intent of this section.
(2) 
Affordability requirements.
(a) 
Duration of affordability. Affordable units shall be subject to restrictions that to the extent legally possible shall preserve the permanent affordability (in perpetuity) of the units as defined by this bylaw, but in no case shall be fewer than 50 years.
(b) 
Maximum rental price. Rents for the affordable units, excluding utilities (heat, water, electricity), shall not exceed 30% of the targeted annual gross household income, as determined by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development. Specific prices shall be determined by the state or federal funding source, if applicable, and are subject to approval by the Southborough Housing Opportunity Partnership Committee.
(c) 
Maximum sales price. Housing costs, including monthly housing payments, principal and interest payments, real estate taxes, and insurance, shall not exceed 30% of the targeted gross household income. Specific prices shall be determined by the state or federal funding source, if applicable, and are subject to approval by the Southborough Housing Opportunity Partnership Committee.
(d) 
Resale prices. Subsequent resale prices shall be determined based on a percentage of the median income at the time of resale as determined by the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development and adopted by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development. The resale price will be established based on a discount rate, which is the percentage of the median income for which the unit was originally sold. The method of resale price calculation shall be included as part of the deed restriction. Through agreement between the Southborough Housing Opportunity Partnership Committee and the developer or owner, this percentage may be increased or decreased by up to 5% at the time of resale, in order to assure that the target income groups' ability to purchase will be kept in line with the unit's market appreciation and to provide a proper return on equity to the seller.
(e) 
Marketing plan. The affordable units must be rented or sold using marketing and selection guidelines approved by the Southborough Housing Opportunity Partnership Committee, and in accordance with state guidelines.
(f) 
Preference for Town residents and persons employed within the Town. Unless otherwise prohibited by a federal or state agency under a financing or other subsidy program, not less than 70% of the affordable units shall be initially offered to, in order of preference:
[1] 
To employees of the Town of Southborough for at least five years;
[2] 
Current residents of the Town of Southborough who have resided in the Town for a minimum of five years and/or persons who, although not currently residents of the Town, have previously resided in the Town of Southborough for a minimum of five years in the last 15 years.
(3) 
Development standards.
(a) 
Location of affordable units. Affordable units shall be dispersed throughout the development so as to ensure a true mix of market-rate and affordable housing.
(b) 
Comparability. Affordable units shall be to the extent possible externally indistinguishable from market rate units in the same development. Affordable units should be comparable to market rate units in terms of location, quality, character, and room size.
(c) 
Unit size. Except as otherwise authorized by the Southborough Housing Opportunity Partnership Committee, affordable units shall contain one or more bedrooms. The mix of unit sizes among the affordable units shall be proportionate to that of the development as a whole.
(d) 
Rights and privileges. The owners or renters of affordable units shall have all rights, privileges and responsibilities accorded to market-rate owners or renters, including access to all non-fee amenities within the development.
(4) 
Incentive. To facilitate the objectives of this section, modifications to the dimensional requirements in the applicable zoning district shall be permitted for projects subject to the requirements of this section. The modifications shall be permitted as set forth below.
(a) 
Density bonus. The minimum lot area per dwelling unit normally required in the applicable zoning district shall be reduced by that amount necessary, upon approval, to permit up to three additional units in the project for each one affordable unit as required in Subsection E(1) above.
(5) 
Alternative methods of affordability.
(a) 
This section mandates that affordable units shall be provided on-site. However, in certain exceptional circumstances the Planning Board may, at the formal written request of the developer, consider an alternative method of compliance. In granting such authorization, the Town must find that the developer has demonstrated that building the required affordable units on-site would create a significant hardship, or that such alternate method of compliance is in the best interests of the Town. A "significant hardship" shall be defined as being of such significance that the property cannot physically accommodate the required affordable units and/or related requirements, such as height, setbacks, or parking. Hardship shall not be considered due to financial or marketing consideration. To have such a request considered, the burden of proof shall be on the developers, who must make full disclosure to the Planning Board of all relevant information. Approval of alternate methods of compliance shall be only for the methods described below.
(b) 
Except as set forth below, affordable units provided through an alternate method shall comply in all other respects with the requirements of this bylaw. The incentives described in Subsection E(4) are not available to development proposals in which the requirements of this section are met using the cash contribution method of compliance.
(c) 
The following alternative methods of compliance, in order of preference by the Town, may be considered by the Town in rare, exceptional circumstances:
[1] 
Off-site location. With authorization by the Planning Board as described above, affordable units may be constructed by the developer on an alternate site. The alternate site must be suitable for residential development and must be within the Town of Southborough, and must add to the Town's stock of affordable housing units. Off-site units shall be comparable in quality, size and type to the market-rate units being created, and of a number no fewer than the number of units that would have otherwise been provided on-site. Affordable off-site units allowed by this bylaw may be located in an existing structure, provided that their construction constitutes a net increase in the number of dwelling units contained in the structure. Off-site units shall be subject to the same construction schedule as otherwise required if on-site as set forth in Subsection E(6)(c).
[2] 
Cash contribution. With authorization by the Planning Board as described above, developers may make a cash payment to the Town to be used only for the purposes of providing housing affordable to low-income households as defined by this bylaw.
[a] 
For ownership developments, the financial contribution for each affordable unit shall be equal to the full purchase price of an affordable unit for a four-person low-income household as defined by this bylaw and in accordance with the regulations and policies of the Department of Housing and Community Development. In order to include the value of the land, the financial contribution for each affordable unit shall also include an amount equal to the current year's assessed value of the land divided by the total number of units proposed, multiplied by the total number of affordable units.
[b] 
For rental units, the financial contribution for each affordable unit shall be equal to the difference between the average market rental price for the market-rate units in the subject development and the rent affordable to a four-person low-income household as defined by this bylaw, calculated over a term of 10 years. In order to include the value of the land, the financial contribution for each affordable unit shall also include an amount equal to the current year's assessed value of the land divided by the total number of units proposed, multiplied by the total number of affordable units.
[c] 
Prior to the issuance of a final occupancy permit for any portion of the project, the contribution shall be payable in full, or a written agreement approved by the Planning Board and SHOPC must be recorded and filed with the Town Treasurer.
(d) 
Administration of funds. Funds donated to the Town in accordance with the provisions outlined in MGL c. 44, § 53A, shall be restricted solely for the creation of affordable housing, located in the Town of Southborough, and as defined by this bylaw. The funds shall be kept in a separate account by the Town Treasurer. The Town Treasurer shall deposit the funds in a bank or invest the same in securities as are legal under the law of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Any interest earned shall be credited to and become part of the fund. Any moneys conveyed to the Town in accordance with this subsection shall be expended only with approval of the majority of Town Meeting.
(6) 
Enforcement.
(a) 
Legal restrictions. Affordable units shall be rented or sold subject to deed covenants, contractual agreements, and/or other mechanisms restricting the use and occupancy, rent levels and sales prices of such units to assure their affordability. All restrictive instruments shall be subject to review and approval by the Southborough Housing Opportunity Partnership Committee and Town Counsel. All condominium documents and fees shall be subject to review and approval by the Southborough Housing Opportunity Partnership Committee and Town Counsel.
(b) 
Timing of commitments. All contractual agreements with the Town and other documents necessary to ensure compliance with this subsection shall be executed prior to and as a condition of the issuance of any approval required to commence construction.
(c) 
Timing of construction. As a condition of the issuance of approval under this subsection, the Southborough Housing Opportunity Partnership Committee may set a time schedule for the construction of both affordable and market-rate units. No certificate of occupancy shall be issued for any market-rate units in a development subject to the requirements of this subsection until 25% of the affordable units required to be constructed have been issued a certificate of occupancy. No certificate of occupancy shall be issued to more than 75% of the market-rate units until 100% of the affordable units required to be constructed have obtained a certificate of occupancy.
(7) 
Severability. In case any paragraph or part of this section should be for any reason declared invalid or unconstitutional by any court of last resort, every other paragraph or part shall continue in full force and effect.
(8) 
Exempt areas. Development within a Critical Resource District (§ 174-8.10) shall be exempt from the requirements of this section.
F. 
Bonused development.
[Amended 4-15-2004 ATM by Art. 45]
(1) 
Discretionary bonus. The Planning Board may also authorize up to an additional ten-percent increase based on the following criteria, unless the Board explains in its decision why unusual circumstances cause the Board to act otherwise:
(a) 
Middle-income units. For units designed for households having incomes not exceeding 140% of the median family income for the Boston Region, as estimated by the HUD Regional Economist:
[1] 
Bonus: One added lot or unit for each middle-income unit, provided that the following requirements are met.
[a] 
Continuing affordability. The units shall be assured of continuing affordability for middle income households, for not less than 10 years.
[b] 
Local preference. The provisions of Subsection (E)(2)(f) applicable to affordable units shall also apply to middle-income units.
(b) 
On-site preservation of critical areas. For land otherwise eligible to be credited towards lot area but not so credited and either restricted under a conservation restriction or deeded to the Town, if that land is determined by the Planning Board to be of critical importance for retention in an undeveloped state such as the following:
[1] 
Land within 200 feet of existing major roads.
[2] 
Land across which there are important scenic views from publicly accessible points.
[3] 
Land of special habitat or ecological value and fragility.
[4] 
Bonus: one added lot or dwelling unit for each lot which could reasonably be expected to be developed in the restricted area under a conventional plan in full conformance with zoning, subdivision regulations, and health codes. In making this determination, the Planning Board shall seek the advice of the Conservation Commission and Board of Health.
(c) 
Off-site preservation of critical areas. For land in Southborough not contiguous with the parcel to be developed, whether in the same ownership or not, if made part of the flexible development application and to be preserved under a conservation restriction or deeded to the Town, if the Planning Board determines that the land is of critical importance for retention as provided under Subsection F(2)(b) above, and that the land being developed is not of critical importance for retention:
[1] 
Bonus: one added dwelling unit for each dwelling unit which could reasonably be expected to have been developed on the restricted parcel under a conventional plan in full conformance with zoning, subdivision regulations and health codes.
[2] 
Critical resource bonus. In the case of land within the Critical Resource District proposed to be restricted, added dwelling units (which must be outside the district) shall equal double the number reasonably expected on a conventional plan for the restricted land.
G. 
Decision.
(1) 
Procedure. The procedure for approval shall be as follows:
(a) 
Approval of flexible plan. The Planning Board shall approve or approve with conditions a special permit for major residential development for the flexible plan, provided that the Board determines that the flexible plan is at least as beneficial to the Town as the conventional plan, based upon the considerations established under § 174-9, Special Permit Requirements, and Article IV of Chapter 244, Subdivision of Land, and the design criteria listed Subsection G(2) below.
(b) 
Approval of conventional plan. Only if the Board determines that the conventional plan is more beneficial to the Town than the flexible plan shall the Board approve major residential development for the conventional plan, provided that it meets all requirements of this section.
(c) 
Denial of both plans. Only if the Board determines that the flexible plan is not a good-faith design or that the more beneficial plan does not conform to the requirements of this section shall the Board disapprove both plans.
(2) 
General design criteria. The specific design requirements in each of the prior subsections shall be met. In addition, when evaluating the plans, the following general criteria shall be considered by the Planning Board as indicating design appropriate to the natural landscape and meeting the objectives of major residential development:
(a) 
Layout of open and common land.
[1] 
The maximum number of lots or units shall be contiguous to the common land.
[2] 
Common land shall be arranged to protect valuable natural environments, such as streams, valleys, outstanding vegetation or scenic views.
[3] 
The common land shall be reasonably contiguous and coherent.
[4] 
If the tract of land abuts adjacent common land or other permanently protected open space, then the common land shall be connected with such adjacent common land and with such permanently protected open space.
[5] 
Where appropriate, and not detrimental to the natural features of the site, open space shall be utilized for recreation to serve Town needs.
[Added 4-12-1999 ATM by Art. 65]
(b) 
Ownership, maintenance and use restrictions on common land and facilities.
[1] 
The ownership and maintenance responsibilities of all private and/or common areas and facilities (including but not limited to open space, recreational facilities, roads and sewer treatment plants, if any) shall be subject to approval of the Planning Board, and in the case of sewer treatment plants, subject to the approval of the Board of Health.
[2] 
Private roads, if allowed by the Planning Board, shall be designed to the standards specified in Chapter 244, Subdivision of Land.
[3] 
Open land, if any, unless conveyed to the Town of Southborough, shall be covered by a recorded restriction enforceable by the Town of Southborough, provided that such land shall be kept in open space.
(c) 
Buffer areas and view protection.
[1] 
Buffer areas shall be preserved and maintained to minimize conflict between residential and other uses.
[2] 
Buffers of natural vegetation shall be preserved or created adjacent to wetlands and surface waters.
[3] 
Scenic views and vistas shall be protected.
(d) 
General site layout.
[1] 
The elements of the site plan (lots, buildings, circulation, common land, landscaping, etc.) shall be arranged favorably with existing natural topography, streams and water bodies.
(e) 
Circulation.
[1] 
Street appearance and capacity shall be protected by avoiding development fronting such streets.
[2] 
The street system shall provide for safe and convenient movement of vehicles on and off the site and shall be designed to contribute to the overall aesthetic quality of the development.
[3] 
The pedestrian circulation system shall be designed to assure that pedestrians can move safely and easily on the site and between properties and activities within the site and neighborhood.
[4] 
Private roads, if any: refer to Subsection G(2)(b) above.
(3) 
Subdivision approval. The granting of a special permit for a major residential development shall in no case be construed as an approval under Chapter 244, Subdivision of Land.
(4) 
Subsequent changes. Subsequent to granting the special permit and approval of a definitive plan of subdivision, the Planning Board may permit, without initiating a new special permit proceeding, the relocation of lot lines within the development; change in the layout of streets; change in the use, ownership and layout of the common land; or change in any other conditions stated in the original special permit. The Planning Board shall require a new special permit if it determines that the proposed changes are substantial in nature and/or impact public health or safety.
[Added 4-10-2006 ATM by Art. 47]
A. 
Purpose and authority. This bylaw is adopted under authority granted by the Home Rule Amendment of the Massachusetts Constitution, the Home Rule statutes, and pursuant to the Bylaws of the Federal Clean Water Act found at 40 CFR 122.34. Environmental protection is a significant concern of the Town of Southborough. It is in the public interest to minimize the impacts associated with land development and to regulate post-development stormwater runoff discharges to control and minimize increases in stormwater runoff rates and volumes, post-construction soil erosion and sedimentation, stream channel erosion, and nonpoint source pollution associated with post-development stormwater runoff. Lower impact development (hereinafter LID) site planning and management of post-development stormwater runoff will minimize damage to public and private property and infrastructure, safeguard the public health, safety, environment and general welfare of the public, protect water and aquatic resources, and promote groundwater recharge to protect surface, groundwater, and drinking water supplies. The purpose of this bylaw is as follows:
(1) 
To protect the quality and quantity of surface waters, reservoirs, and groundwater, to maintain the integrity of aquatic living resources and ecosystems, and to preserve the physical integrity of receiving streams and water bodies;
(2) 
To encourage a more efficient form of development that consumes less open land and protects existing topography, wildlife habitats, and natural features;
(3) 
To require that new development, redevelopment and all land conversion activities maintain the natural hydrologic characteristics of the land to reduce flooding, stream bank erosion, siltation, nonpoint source pollution, property damage, and to maintain the integrity of stream channels and aquatic habitats;
(4) 
To establish decision-making processes surrounding land development activities that protect the integrity of the watershed and preserve the health of water resources; and
(5) 
To minimize the total amount of disturbance of the land.
B. 
Definitions. Terms not defined in this bylaw shall be construed according to their customary and usual meaning unless the context indicates a special or technical meaning.
ALTER
Any activity which will measurably change the ability of a ground surface area to absorb water or will change existing surface drainage patterns. Alter may be similarly represented as "alteration of drainage characteristics," and "conducting land disturbance activities."
BIORETENTION AREAS
Shallow depressions filled with engineered soils, topped with a thick layer of mulch, and planted with dense vegetation that reduce the overall amount of runoff to be treated by infiltrating stormwater to the ground.
DISTURBED AREA
An area, man-made or natural, where the existing condition has been or is proposed to be altered.
INFILTRATION
The act of conveying surface water into the ground to recharge groundwater and to reduce stormwater runoff from a project site.
LOWER IMPACT DEVELOPMENT (LID)
An ecosystem-based approach to land development and stormwater management that ensures that each development site is designed to protect, or restore, the natural hydrology of the site.
LID MANAGEMENT
The use of structural or nonstructural practices that are designed to reduce stormwater runoff pollutant loads, discharge volumes, and/or peak flow discharge rates.
LID TECHNIQUES
Engineering measures that compensate for the reduced infiltration and storage characteristics of developed sites.
MASSACHUSETTS STORMWATER MANAGEMENT POLICY
The policy issued by the Department of Environmental Protection, as amended, that coordinates the requirements prescribed by state regulations promulgated under the authority of the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act, MGL c. 131, § 40, and Massachusetts Clean Waters Act, MGL c. 21, §§ 23 through 56.[2] The policy addresses stormwater impacts through implementation of performance standards to reduce or prevent pollutants from reaching water bodies and control the quantity of runoff from a site.
MULTIFUNCTIONAL LANDSCAPE FEATURES
Bioretention areas, swales, and conservation areas that mimic or replicate hydrologic functions and maintain the ecological/biological integrity of receiving streams and water bodies.
MUNICIPAL STORM DRAIN SYSTEM
The system of conveyances designed or used for collecting or conveying stormwater, including any road with a drainage system, street, gutter, curb, inlet, piped storm drain, pumping facility, retention or detention basin, natural or man-made or altered drainage channel, reservoir, and other drainage structure that together comprise the storm drainage system owned or operated by the Town of Southborough.
NEW DEVELOPMENT
Any construction or land disturbance of a parcel of land that is currently in a natural vegetated state and does not contain significant alterations by man-made activities.
NONPOINT SOURCE POLLUTION
Pollution from many diffuse sources caused by rainfall or snowmelt moving over and through the ground. As the runoff moves, it picks up and carries away natural and human-made pollutants, finally depositing them into water resource areas.
OPERATION AND MAINTENANCE PLAN
A plan that defines the functional, financial, and organizational mechanisms for the ongoing operation.
PERSON
Any individual, group of individuals, association, partnership, corporation, company, business organization, trust, estate, the commonwealth or political subdivision thereof to the extent subject to Town Bylaws, administrative agency, public or quasi-public corporation or body, the Town of Southborough, and any other legal entity, its legal representatives, agents, or assigns.
PRE-DEVELOPMENT
The conditions that exist at the time that plans for the development of a tract of land are submitted to the special permit granting authority. Where phased development or plan approval occurs (preliminary grading, roads and utilities, etc.), the existing conditions at the time prior to the first plan submission shall establish pre-development conditions.
POINT SOURCE
Any discernible, confined, and discrete conveyance, including, but not limited to, any pipe, ditch, channel, tunnel, conduit, well, discrete fissure, or container from which pollutants are or may be discharged.
POST-DEVELOPMENT
The conditions that reasonably may be expected or anticipated to exist after completion of the land development activity on a specific site or tract of land. Post-development refers to the phase of a new development or redevelopment project after completion, and does not refer to the construction phase of a project.
RECHARGE
The replenishment of underground water reserves.
REDEVELOPMENT
Any construction, alteration, or improvement where the existing land use is commercial, industrial, institutional, or multifamily residential.
RESOURCE AREA
Any area protected under federal, state, or local law or regulation, including, without limitation: the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act and the Southborough Wetlands Protection Bylaw.[3]
RUNOFF
Rainfall, snowmelt, or irrigation water flowing over the ground surface.
SEDIMENTATION
A process of depositing material that has been suspended and transported in water.
SITE
The parcel of land being developed or a designated planning area in which the land development project is located.
[2]
Editor's Note: See the Clean Waters Act in MGL c. 21, §§ 26 through 53.
[3]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 170, Wetlands Protection.
C. 
Applicability. This bylaw shall be applicable to all new development and redevelopment, including, but not limited to, site plan applications, subdivision applications, grading applications, land use conversion applications, any activity that will result in an increased amount of stormwater runoff or pollutants flowing from a parcel of land, or any activity that will alter the drainage characteristics of a parcel of land, unless exempt pursuant to Subsection D of this bylaw. After April 10, 2006, the Planning Board shall not approve any application for development or redevelopment if the land or parcels of land were held in common ownership (including ownership by related or jointly controlled persons or entities) and were subdivided or otherwise modified to avoid compliance. A development shall not be segmented or phased in a manner to avoid compliance with this bylaw. A LID special permit shall be required from the Planning Board for the following:
(1) 
Any activity subject to major plan review (§ 174-10);
(2) 
Any activity that will result in soil disturbance of one acre or more;
(3) 
Any residential development or redevelopment of five or more acres of land proposed pursuant to the Subdivision Control Law, MGL c. 41, § 81K to 81GG, inclusive, or proposed under a special permit process pursuant to MGL c. 40A, § 9.
D. 
Exemptions.
(1) 
Any activity that will disturb an area less than one acre.
(2) 
Normal maintenance and improvement of land in agricultural use as defined by the Wetlands Protection Act regulation, 310 CMR 10.04 and MGL c. 40A, § 3.
(3) 
Construction and associated grading of a way that has been approved by the Planning Board.
(4) 
The maintenance, reconstruction or resurfacing of any public way; and the installation of drainage structures and utilities within or associated with public ways that have been approved by the appropriate authorities.
(5) 
Emergency repairs to any stormwater management facility or practice that poses a threat to public health or safety, or as deemed necessary by the special permit granting authority.
(6) 
Any work or projects for which all necessary approvals and permits have been issued before the effective date of this bylaw.
(7) 
Redevelopment projects are presumed to meet the specified LID requirements described in the LID Bylaw of the Town of Southborough if the total impervious cover is reduced by 40% from existing conditions. Where site conditions prevent the reduction in impervious cover, LID practices shall be implemented to provide stormwater controls for at least 40% of the site's impervious area. When a combination of impervious area reduction and implementation of LID techniques is used for redevelopment projects, the combination of impervious area reduction and the area controlled by a LID practice shall equal or exceed 40%.
E. 
Special permit application and procedure.
(1) 
The Planning Board shall be the special permit granting authority for the issuance of a LID special permit. Such special permit applications shall be submitted, considered, and issued only in accordance with the provisions of this bylaw and MGL c. 40A, § 9.
(2) 
To obtain approval for a project subject to the provisions of this bylaw, the applicant shall submit a LID special permit application that meets the LID site design principles stated below, a LID management plan and an operation and maintenance plan that complies with the requirements set forth herein and in the regulations adopted pursuant to this bylaw.
(a) 
Preservation of the site's natural features and environmentally sensitive areas such as wetlands, native vegetation, mature trees, slopes, drainageways, permeable soils, floodplains, woodlands and soils to the greatest extent possible;
(b) 
Minimization of grading and clearing;
(c) 
Clustering of buildings;
(d) 
Use of stormwater management components that provide filtration, treatment and infiltration such as vegetated areas that slow down runoff; maximizing infiltration and reducing contact with paved surfaces;
(e) 
Creation of subwatersheds to treat and manage runoff in smaller, decentralized, low-tech stormwater management techniques to treat and recharge stormwater close to the source;
(f) 
Emphasis of simple, nonstructural, low-tech, low-cost methods, including open drainage systems, disconnection of roof runoff, and street sweeping;
(g) 
Reduction of impervious surfaces wherever possible through alternative street design, such as omission of curbs and use of narrower streets, shared driveways and through the use of shared parking areas;
(h) 
Reduction of any heat island effect;
(i) 
Use of native plant vegetation (invasive species prohibited) in buffer strips and in rain gardens (small planted depressions that can trap and filter runoff). Naturalized, noninvasive plant species may be substituted for native plant vegetation subject to the Board's approval.
(j) 
Techniques integrated into every aspect of site design to create a hydrologically functional lot or site, including the following:
[1] 
Vegetated open channel systems along roads;
[2] 
Rain gardens;
[3] 
Buffer strips;
[4] 
Use of roof gardens where practicable;
[5] 
Use of amended soils that will store, filter and infiltrate runoff;
[6] 
Bioretention areas;
[7] 
Use of rain barrels and other cisterns to provide additional stormwater storage;
[8] 
Use of permeable pavement.
(3) 
The Planning Board may waive some of the requirements for a LID special permit application if it determines that some of the application requirements are unnecessary because of the size or character of the development project or because of the natural conditions at the site. Waivers that are granted at the initial approval may not be binding if the reasons for which the waiver was granted are changed or no longer exist.
(4) 
The applicant shall make all requests for waivers in writing. The applicant shall submit supporting technical information and documentation to demonstrate that some, or all, of the requirements are unnecessary because of minimal environmental impact or other reasons why such waiver/s should be granted. The Planning Board's decision to grant or deny waivers shall be in writing and shall set forth the reasons for the grant or denial.
(5) 
At the time of application, the applicant shall provide in writing the name of the person who is responsible for the site disturbing activity which is the subject of the application. Said person shall ensure that the approved activity takes place in accordance with the application, plan and special permit requirements.
F. 
Entry. Filing an application for a special permit grants the Board, or its agent, permission to enter the site to verify the information in the application and to inspect for compliance with the resulting special permit.
G. 
LID management plan.
(1) 
The LID management plan shall contain sufficient information for the Planning Board to evaluate the environmental impact, effectiveness, and acceptability of the site planning process and the measures proposed by the applicant to reduce all adverse impacts from stormwater runoff to control and minimize increases in stormwater runoff rates and volumes, post-construction soil erosion and sedimentation, stream channel erosion, and nonpoint source pollution associated with post-development stormwater runoff, and to minimize the impacts associated with land development. This plan shall be in accordance with the criteria established in this bylaw and the supporting regulations and must be prepared, stamped and signed by a professional engineer registered in Massachusetts, a registered land surveyor, or a Massachusetts licensed soil evaluator, as appropriate.
(2) 
The LID management plan shall fully describe the project in drawings, narrative, and calculations. It shall meet the criteria set forth in the regulations adopted pursuant to this bylaw.
H. 
Operation and maintenance plan contents. The operation and maintenance plan (O&M plan) shall be designed to ensure compliance with the LID special permit, this bylaw and to ensure that the Massachusetts Surface Water Quality Standards, 314 CMR 4.00, are met in all seasons and throughout the life of the system. The O&M plan shall be prepared in accordance with the criteria established in the regulations adopted pursuant to this bylaw, and shall be stamped and signed by a professional engineer registered in Massachusetts, and a registered land surveyor, as appropriate. The O&M plan shall remain on file with the Planning Board and shall be an ongoing requirement.
I. 
Performance standards: LID criteria. The LID application and required plans shall meet the general performance criteria set forth in the regulations adopted pursuant to this bylaw.
J. 
Findings and conditions of approval.
(1) 
The Board shall not approve any application for a LID special permit unless it finds that the following conditions have been met and the LID techniques listed herein have been employed to the maximum extent practicable to meet the stated purpose of this Bylaw.
(a) 
A separate special permit shall be required from the Planning Board when an area totaling one acre or more on any parcel or contiguous parcels in the same ownership will have the existing vegetation clear-stripped or be filled six inches or more so as to destroy existing vegetation unless in conjunction with agricultural activity or unless necessarily incidental to construction on the premises under a currently valid building permit or unless within streets which are either public or designated on an approved subdivision plan. The special permit shall require that run-off be controlled, erosion prevented and either a constructed surface or cover vegetation be provided not later than the first full spring season immediately following completion of the stripping operation. Any stripped area that is allowed to remain stripped through the winter shall have a temporary cover of winter rye or similar plant material for soil control, except in the case of agricultural activity when such temporary cover would be infeasible.
(b) 
Measures shall be employed to minimize adverse impacts on wildlife habitats and corridors, natural or historic landscape features, and scenic vistas and views.
(c) 
Compliance with all applicable federal, state and local regulations and guidelines, including but not limited to the Stormwater Management Handbook as it may be amended, has been demonstrated.
(2) 
The Planning Board may require a cash performance guarantee to ensure compliance with these requirements and for the operation and maintenance of all permanent LID measures. With the approval of the Board upon the recommendation of Town Counsel and the Town Treasurer, as appropriate, the applicant may substitute an irrevocable letter of credit or performance bond in lieu of the cash performance guarantee. Any performance bond or letter of credit shall be executed and maintained by a financial institution, surety, or guarantee company qualified to do business in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
(3) 
Prior to commencement of any land disturbing activity, the applicant shall record the special permit with the Registry of Deeds or Registry District of the Land Court, and the applicant shall submit to the Planning Board written proof of such recording.
(4) 
At completion of the project, the owner shall submit as-built record drawings of all structural stormwater controls and treatment best management practices required for the site. The as-built drawing shall show deviations from the approved plans, if any, and shall be certified by a professional engineer registered in Massachusetts.
(5) 
Based upon the nature of the application the Board may impose requirements or limitations to minimize the impacts, if any, on abutting properties or uses.
(6) 
The site planning process shall be documented and shall include the following steps:
(a) 
Identify and map environmental resources;
(b) 
Delineate potential building envelopes avoiding environmental resource areas and appropriate buffers; and
(c) 
Develop methods to minimize impervious surfaces, and to protect and preserve open space.
(7) 
All stormwater runoff generated from land development and land use conversion activities shall not discharge untreated stormwater runoff directly to a wetland, local water body, municipal drainage system, or abutting property, without adequate treatment.
(8) 
The Planning Board may deny a LID special permit if it determines:
(a) 
The requirements set forth herein are not met; or
(b) 
The intent of the application is to circumvent other provisions of the Town's Zoning Code, rules, or regulations.
K. 
Enforcement. The Board or its authorized agent and the Town of Southborough shall have the power and duty to enforce this bylaw, its regulations, decisions, orders, violation notices, and enforcement orders issued pursuant to this bylaw, and may pursue all civil and criminal remedies for such violations.
(1) 
Penalties. Any person who violates any provision of this bylaw, regulation, or permit issued hereunder, shall be subject to fines, civil action, criminal prosecution, and tax liens, as appropriate and as lawfully established by the Town of Southborough.
(2) 
Tax liens. The Town of Southborough shall require the repayment of services provided to the responsible party that the responsible party was obligated to perform as set forth in the operation and maintenance plan. If repayment is not made within 30 days, the Town may impose a tax lien on the property of the responsible party or parties.
L. 
Severability. Any determination that a particular provision or set of provisions in this bylaw are invalid or unenforceable shall not render ineffective, unenforceable, or inapplicable the remainder of this bylaw.
[1]
Editor's Note: Former § 174-13.3, Critical Resource District, added 4-14-1986 ATM by Art. 38, was superseded 4-12-1993 ATM by Art. 43. See now § 174-8.10, Critical Resource District.
[Added 4-14-1986 ATM by Art. 40]
A. 
Design and operations guidelines. To reduce asks of water contamination, the following design and operations guidelines shall be observed wherever germane in all new nonresidential construction.
(1) 
Safeguards. Provisions shall be made to protect against hazardous materials discharge or loss through corrosion, accidental damage, spillage or vandalism through such measures as provision for spill control in the vicinity of chemical or fuel delivery points, secure storage areas for hazardous materials and indoor storage provisions for corrodible or dissolvable materials.
(2) 
Disposal. Provisions shall be made to assure that any waste disposed on the site shall contain no hazardous materials in concentrations substantially greater than associated with normal household use.
(3) 
Drainage. Floor or lavatory drainage shall be directed to an impervious retention facility for controlled removal. Provision shall be made for on-site recharge of all stormwater runoff from impervious surfaces unless, following consultation with the Conservation Commission, the Building Inspector determines that either recharge is infeasible because of site conditions or is undesirable because of uncontrollable risks to water quality from such recharge. Recharge shall be by surface infiltration through vegetative surfaces unless otherwise approved by the Building Inspector following consultation with the Conservation Commission. Dry wells shall be used only where other methods are infeasible and shall employ oil, grease and sediment traps. Drainage from loading and unloading areas for hazardous materials shall be separately collected for safe disposal.
B. 
Uses requiring special permits.
(1) 
The following shall be allowed only if granted a special permit from the special permit granting authority:
(a) 
Waste generation requiring the obtaining of an Environmental Protection Agency identification number, except for small quantity generators, as defined under DEQE regulations, 310 CMR 30.351.
(b) 
On-site sewage disposal having an estimated sewage flow greater than 15,000 gallons per day, regardless of location, or greater than 1,500 gallons per day if within 500 feet of any surface water body.
(c) 
Rendering impervious more than 75% of lot area.
(d) 
Except for single-family dwellings, on-site sewage disposal systems having an estimated sewage flow exceeding 120 gallons per day per 10,000 square feet of lot area.
(e) 
Discharge to surface water requiring a permit under 314 CMR 3.00 (NPDES permit).
(2) 
Change in activity resulting in crossing any of the thresholds of B(1)(a) through (d) shall constitute a change of use requiring a special permit.
C. 
Special permit process.
(1) 
Authority and procedure. The special permit granting authority (SPGA) shall be the Board of Appeals. Upon receipt of the special permit application, the SPGA shall transmit one copy each to the Planning Board, the Conservation Commission, the Board of Health and the Building Inspector for their written recommendations. Failure to respond within 35 days of transmittal shall indicate approval by said agencies.
(2) 
Submittals. In applying for a special permit under this section, the information listed below shall be submitted unless the Board of Appeals, prior to formal application, determines that certain of these items are not germane:
(a) 
A complete list of all chemicals, pesticides, fuels or other potentially hazardous materials to be used or stored on the premises in quantities greater than associated with normal household use, accompanied by a description of the measures proposed to protect all storage containers or facilities from vandalism, corrosion and leakage and to provide for control of spills.
(b) 
A description of potentially hazardous wastes to be generated, including storage and disposal methods as in Subsection C(2)(a) above.
(c) 
For aboveground storage of hazardous materials or wastes, evidence of qualified professional supervision of design and installation of such storage facilities or containers.
(d) 
For disposal on-site of domestic wastewater with an estimated sewage flow greater than 15,000 gallons per day, evidence of qualified professional supervision of design and installation, including an assessment of nitrate, phosphate and coliform bacteria impact on groundwater quality.
(3) 
Special permit criteria. Special permits under this section shall be granted only if the SPGA determines that there is adequate assurance that there will be no violation of the Massachusetts Surface Water Quality Standards (314 CMR 4.00) and that groundwater quality resulting from on-site waste disposal, other operations on-site and natural recharge will not fall below federal or state standards for drinking water when averaged over the boundaries of the site or, if existing groundwater quality is already below those standards, on-site disposal or operations will result in no further deterioration and only if the SPGA determines that proposed control and response measures adequately and reliably mitigate risk to groundwater quality resulting from accident or system failure. In its decision, the SPGA shall explain any departures from the recommendations of other Town agencies in its decision.
(4) 
Conditions. Special permits shall be granted only subject to such conditions as are necessary to assure adequate safeguarding of water quality, which may include the following, among others:
(a) 
Monitoring wells to be located downgradient of potential pollution sources, with periodic sampling to be provided to the Board of Health at the owner's expense.
(b) 
Pollutant source reduction, including limitations on use of parking area deicing materials and periodic cleaning or renovation of pollution control devices, such as catch basin sumps.
[Added 4-10-2006 ATM by Art. 46]
A. 
Purpose. Regulation of activities that result in the disturbance of land and the creation of stormwater runoff is necessary for the protection of the Town of Southborough to safeguard the health, safety, and welfare of the general public and protect the natural resources of the Town. The purpose of this bylaw is to prevent or diminish these impacts by controlling runoff and preventing soil erosion and sedimentation resulting from site construction and development. This bylaw is adopted under authority granted by the Home Rule Amendment of the Massachusetts Constitution, the Home Rule statutes, and pursuant to the bylaws of the federal Clean Water Act found at 40 CFR 122.34. Nothing in this bylaw is intended to replace the requirements of either the Town of Southborough Wetlands Protection Bylaw,[1] or any other bylaw that has been or may be adopted by the Town of Southborough. Any activity subject to the provisions of the above-cited bylaws must comply with the specifications of each applicable bylaw. The objectives of this bylaw are to:
(1) 
Establish decision-making processes surrounding land development activities that protect the integrity of the watershed and preserve the health of wetland and water resources;
(2) 
Require that new development, redevelopment and all land conversion activities maintain the after-development runoff characteristics as equal to or less than the pre-development runoff characteristics to provide recharge and to reduce flooding, stream bank erosion, siltation, nonpoint source pollution, property damage, and to maintain the integrity of stream channels and aquatic habitats;
(3) 
Establish minimum construction/alteration and post-development stormwater management standards and design criteria for the regulation and control of stormwater runoff quantity and quality and for the protection of properties and aquatic resources downstream from land development and land conversion activities from damages due to increases in volume, velocity, frequency, duration, and peak flow rate of stormwater runoff;
(4) 
Establish design criteria for measures to minimize nonpoint source pollution from stormwater runoff which would otherwise degrade water quality;
(5) 
Establish design and application criteria for the construction and use of structural stormwater control facilities that can be used to meet the minimum construction/alteration and post-development stormwater management standards and to encourage the use of nonstructural stormwater management, stormwater site design practices or "low-impact development practices," such as reducing impervious cover and the preservation of open space and other natural areas, to the maximum extent practicable;
(6) 
Establish provisions for the long-term responsibility for and maintenance of structural stormwater control facilities and nonstructural stormwater management practices to ensure that they continue to function as designed, are maintained, and pose no threat to public safety;
(7) 
Establish provisions to ensure there is an adequate funding mechanism, including surety, for the proper review, inspection and long-term maintenance of stormwater facilities implemented as part of this bylaw; and
(8) 
Establish administrative procedures and fees for the submission, review, approval, or disapproval of stormwater management plans, and for the inspection of approved active projects, and long-term follow up.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 270, Wetlands Protection.
B. 
Definitions.
AGRICULTURE
The normal maintenance or improvement of land in agricultural or aquacultural use, as defined by the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act (MGL c. 131, § 40) and its implementing regulations (310 CMR 10.00).
ALTER
Any activity that changes the water quality, or the force, quantity, direction, timing or location of runoff flowing from the area and will measurably change the ability of a ground surface area to absorb water. Such changes include: change from distributed runoff to confined, discrete discharge; change in the volume of runoff from the area; change in the peak rate of runoff from the area; and change in the recharge to groundwater on the area. Alter may be similarly represented as "alteration of drainage characteristics," and "conducting land disturbance activities."
APPLICANT
Any "person" as defined below requesting a stormwater and erosion control permit for proposed land-disturbance activity.
AUTHORIZED ENFORCEMENT AGENCY
The Conservation Commission (hereinafter "the Commission") and its employees or agents or other employee of the Town of Southborough shall be in charge of enforcing the requirements of this bylaw.
BEST MANAGEMENT PRACTICE (BMP)
Structural, nonstructural, vegetative and managerial techniques that are recognized to be the most effective and practical means to reduce erosion and sediment, prevent or reduce increases in stormwater volumes and flows, reduce point source and nonpoint source pollution, and promote stormwater quality and protection of the environment. "Structural" BMPs are devices that are engineered and constructed to provide temporary storage and treatment of stormwater runoff. "Nonstructural" BMPs use natural measures to reduce pollution levels, do not require extensive construction efforts, and/or promote pollutant reduction by eliminating the pollutant source.
BETTER SITE DESIGN
Site design approaches and techniques that can reduce a site's impact on the watershed through the use of nonstructural stormwater management practices. Better site design includes conserving and protecting natural areas and green space, reducing impervious cover, and using natural features for stormwater management.
CONSTRUCTION AND WASTE MATERIALS
Excess or discarded building or construction site materials that may adversely impact water quality, including but not limited to concrete truck washout, chemicals, litter and sanitary waste.
DISTURBED AREA
An area, man-made or natural, where the existing condition has been or is proposed to be altered.
ENVIRONMENTAL SITE MONITOR
A professional engineer, or other trained professional selected by the Commission and retained by the holder of a stormwater and erosion control permit to periodically inspect the work and report to the Commission.
EROSION
A condition in which the earth's surface, including soil or rock fragment, is detached and moved away by the action of water, wind, ice, gravity or other natural means.
GENERAL STORMWATER MANAGEMENT PERMIT (GSMP)
A permit issued for an application that meets a set of predetermined standards outlined in the regulations to be adopted by the Commission under this bylaw. By meeting these predetermined standards, the proposed project will be presumed to meet the requirements and intent of this bylaw.
HOTSPOT
Land uses or activities with higher potential pollutant loadings, such as auto salvage yards, auto fueling facilities, fleet storage yards, commercial parking lots with high intensity use, road salt storage areas, commercial nurseries and landscaping, outdoor storage and loading areas of hazardous substances, or marinas.
MASSACHUSETTS STORMWATER MANAGEMENT POLICY
The policy issued by the Department of Environmental Protection, and as amended, that coordinates the requirements prescribed by state regulations promulgated under the authority of the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act, MGL c. 131, § 40, and Massachusetts Clean Waters Act MGL c. 21, §§ 23 through 56.[2] The policy addresses stormwater impacts through implementation of performance standards to reduce or prevent pollutants from reaching water bodies and control the quantity of runoff from a site.
NEW DEVELOPMENT
Any construction or land disturbance of a parcel of land that is currently in a natural vegetated state and does not contain alteration by man-made activities.
PERSON
Any individual, group of individuals, association, partnership, corporation, company, business organization, trust, estate, the commonwealth or political subdivision thereof to the extent subject to Town bylaws, administrative agency, public or quasi-public corporation or body, the Town of Southborough, and any other legal entity, its legal representatives, agents, or assigns.
POST-DEVELOPMENT
The conditions that reasonably may be expected or anticipated to exist after completion of the land development activity on a specific site or tract of land. Post-development refers to the phase of a new development or redevelopment project after completion, and does not refer to the construction phase of a project.
PRE-DEVELOPMENT
The conditions that exist at the time that plans for the land development of a tract of land are submitted to the Conservation Commission. Where phased development or plan approval occurs (preliminary grading, roads and utilities, etc.), the existing conditions at the time prior to the first plan submission shall establish pre-development conditions.
RECHARGE
The replenishment of underground water reserves.
REDEVELOPMENT
Any construction, alteration, or improvement exceeding land disturbance of 5,000 square feet, where the existing land use is commercial, industrial, institutional, or multifamily residential.
RUNOFF
Rainfall, snowmelt, or irrigation water flowing over the ground surface.
SEDIMENT
Solid material, whether mineral or organic, that is in suspension, is transported or has been moved from its site of origin by erosion.
SEDIMENTATION
A process of depositing material that has been suspended and transported in water.
SLOPE
The vertical rise divided by the horizontal distance and expressed as a fraction or percentage.
STABILIZED
The elimination of any erosion.
STORMWATER MANAGEMENT HANDBOOK
Stormwater Management Handbook, Volume One and Volume Two, prepared by the Mass. Department of Environmental Protection and the Mass. Office of Coastal Zone Management dated March 1997, as the same may be from time to time revised.
STORMWATER MANAGEMENT PERMIT (SMP)
A permit issued by the Conservation Commission, after review of an application, plans, calculations, and other supporting documents, which is designed to protect the environment of the Town from the deleterious effects of uncontrolled and untreated stormwater runoff.
[2]
Editor's Note: See the Clean Waters Act in MGL c. 21, §§ 26 through 53.
C. 
Applicability. This bylaw shall be applicable to all new development and redevelopment, including, but not limited to, site plan applications, subdivision applications, grading applications, land use conversion applications, any activity that will result in an increased amount of stormwater runoff or pollutants flowing from a parcel of land, or any activity that will alter the drainage characteristics of a parcel of land, unless exempt pursuant to Subsection D of this bylaw. After April 10, 2006, the Commission shall not approve any application for development or redevelopment if the land or parcels of land were held in common ownership (including ownership by related or jointly controlled persons or entities) and were subdivided or otherwise modified to avoid compliance. A development shall not be segmented or phased in a manner to avoid compliance with this bylaw. A stormwater and erosion control permit shall be required from the Commission for the following:
(1) 
Any activity subject to major site plan review (§ 174-10);
(2) 
Any activity that will result in soil disturbance of one acre or more, or more than 50% of the parcel or lot, whichever is less;
(3) 
Any residential development or redevelopment of five or more acres of land proposed pursuant to the Subdivision Control Law, MGL c. 41, §§ 81K to 81GG, inclusive, or proposed under a special permit process pursuant to MGL c. 40A, § 9;
(4) 
Any activity that will increase the amount of impervious surfaces more than 50% of the area of a parcel or lot; and
(5) 
Any activity that will disturb land with 15% or greater slope and where the land disturbance is greater than or equal to 15,000 square feet within the sloped area.
D. 
Exemptions. The following activities are exempt from the requirements of this bylaw:
(1) 
Normal maintenance of Town-owned public land, ways and appurtenances;
(2) 
Normal maintenance and improvement of land in agricultural use as defined by the Wetlands Protection Act regulation, 310 CMR 10.04 and MGL c. 40A, § 3;
(3) 
Repair or replacement of septic systems when approved by the Board of Health for the protection of public health;
(4) 
Normal maintenance of existing landscaping, gardens or lawn areas associated with a single-family dwelling, provided such maintenance does not include the addition of more than 400 cubic yards of soil material, or alteration of drainage patterns;
(5) 
The construction of fencing that will not alter existing terrain or drainage patterns;
(6) 
Construction and associated grading of a way that has been approved by the Planning Board;
(7) 
The maintenance, reconstruction or resurfacing of any public way; and the installation of drainage structures or utilities within or associated with public ways that have been approved by the appropriate authorities, provided that written notice be filed with the Conservation Commission 14 days prior to commencement of activity;
(8) 
The removal of earth products undertaken in connection with an agricultural use if the removal is necessary for or directly related to planting, cultivating or harvesting or the raising or care of animals; or
(9) 
Activity in accordance with the terms of an existing order of conditions or determination of applicability issued by the Commission pursuant to MGL c. 131, § 40, or the Southborough Wetlands Protection Bylaw, Chapter 170 of the Code of the Town of Southborough.
E. 
Administration.
(1) 
The Conservation Commission shall be the permit granting authority for the issuance of a stormwater and erosion control permit and shall administer, implement and enforce this bylaw. Any powers granted to or duties imposed upon the Commission may be delegated in writing by the Commission to its employees or agents or other municipal employees as appropriate. Such permit applications shall be submitted, considered, and issued only in accordance with the provisions of this bylaw and the regulations adopted pursuant to this bylaw.
(2) 
Stormwater regulations. The Commission shall adopt, and periodically amend, rules and regulations relating to the terms, conditions, definitions, enforcement, fees, procedures and administration of this Stormwater and Erosion Control Bylaw. Failure by the Commission to promulgate such rules and regulations or a legal declaration of their invalidity by a court shall not act to suspend or invalidate the effect of this bylaw.
(3) 
Right of entry. Filing an application for a stormwater and erosion control permit grants the Commission, or its agent, permission to enter the site to verify the information in the application and to inspect for compliance with permit conditions.
(4) 
Stormwater management manual. The Commission will utilize the policy, criteria and information, including specifications and standards of the latest edition of the Massachusetts Stormwater Management Policy, for execution of the provisions of this bylaw. This policy includes a list of acceptable stormwater treatment practices, including the specific design criteria for each stormwater practice. The policy may be updated and expanded periodically, based on improvements in engineering, science, monitoring, and local maintenance experience. Unless specifically altered in the stormwater regulations, stormwater management practices that are designed, constructed, and maintained in accordance with these design and sizing criteria will be presumed to be protective of Massachusetts's water quality standards.
(5) 
Application. To obtain approval for a project subject to the provisions of this bylaw, the applicant shall submit a stormwater management and erosion control plan and an operation and maintenance plan prepared, stamped and signed by a professional engineer registered in Massachusetts, a registered land surveyor, or a Massachusetts licensed soil evaluator, as appropriate, that complies with the requirements set forth herein and in the regulations adopted pursuant to this bylaw. The operation and maintenance plan (O&M plan) shall be designed to ensure compliance with the permit, this bylaw, and that the Massachusetts surface water quality standards, 314 CMR 4.00, are met in all seasons and throughout the life of the system. The O&M plan shall remain on file with the Commission, the Planning Board, the Department of Public Works and the Town Engineer and shall be an ongoing requirement. The O&M plan shall meet the criteria set forth in the regulations adopted pursuant to this bylaw. The plans shall fully describe the project in drawings, narrative, and calculations.
(a) 
At the time of application, the applicant shall provide in writing the name and the 24 hours a day and seven days a week contact information of the person who is responsible for erosion and sediment control for the site-disturbing activity which is the subject of the application. Said person shall ensure that the approved activity takes place in accordance with the application, plan and permit requirements.
F. 
Fees. The Commission shall establish fees to cover expenses incurred by the Town in reviewing the application and monitoring permit compliance. The Commission is authorized to retain and charge the applicant fees to cover the cost of hiring a registered professional engineer or other professional consultant to advise the Commission on any or all aspects of the project. The applicant for a stormwater and erosion control permit may be required to establish and maintain an escrow account to cover the costs of said consultants. Applicants shall pay review fees to the Commission before the review process may begin.
G. 
Surety. The Commission may require a cash performance guaranty to ensure compliance with these requirements and for the long-term operation and maintenance of all permanent erosion control and stormwater management measures. The form of the bond shall be approved by the Commission upon the recommendation of Town Counsel and the Town Treasurer, as appropriate. With the approval of the Commission upon the recommendation of Town Counsel and the Town Treasurer, as appropriate, the applicant may substitute an irrevocable letter of credit or performance bond in lieu of the cash performance guaranty. Any performance bond or letter of credit shall be executed and maintained by a financial institution, surety, or guaranty company qualified to do business in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
H. 
Waivers.
(1) 
The Commission may waive strict compliance with some of the requirements of this bylaw or the rules and regulations promulgated hereunder, if it determines that some of the application requirements are unnecessary because of the size or character of the development project or because of the natural conditions at the site and where such action:
(a) 
Is allowed by federal, state and local statutes and/or regulations;
(b) 
Is in the public interest; and
(c) 
Is not inconsistent with the purpose and intent of this bylaw.
(2) 
Any request from an applicant for a waiver of these rules shall be submitted, in writing, to the Commission at the time of submission of the application. Such requests shall clearly identify the provisions of the rule from which relief is sought and be accompanied by a statement setting forth the reasons why, in the applicant's opinion, the granting of such a waiver would be in the public interest or the specific information required to show strict compliance is irrelevant to the project, and why a waiver would be consistent with the intent and purpose of this bylaw and the rules and regulations promulgated hereunder.
I. 
Findings and conditions of approval.
(1) 
The Commission shall not approve any application for a stormwater and erosion control permit unless it finds that BMPs will be employed to meet the following requirements:
(a) 
Compliance with all applicable federal, state and local regulations and guidelines, including but not limited to the Stormwater Management Handbook as it may be amended, has been demonstrated;
(b) 
Measures shall be employed to minimize adverse impacts on wildlife habitats and corridors, natural or historic landscape features, and scenic vistas and views;
(c) 
The duration of exposure of disturbed areas due to removal of vegetation, soil removal, and/or regrading shall be set forth in a written time table and approved by the Commission;
(d) 
There shall be no net increase in the rate of stormwater runoff from the site;
(e) 
There shall be no net increase in the volume of stormwater runoff across the boundaries of the site unless provisions have been made to tie into the public storm drains, where available, with the approval of the appropriate parties or authorities or, the Commission has determined that all reasonable provisions have been made to minimize any changes in stormwater runoff at the site;
(f) 
There shall be no adverse impacts to abutting properties from any increase in volume of stormwater runoff, including erosion, silting, flooding, sedimentation or impacts to wetlands, groundwater levels or wells;
(g) 
Where the site is not proposed to be covered with gravel, hardscape, or a building or structure, a planting plan to ensure permanent revegetation of the site has been approved;
(h) 
Areas to be planted shall be loamed with not less than six inches compacted depth of good quality loam and seeded with turf grass seed or other appropriate ground cover in accordance with good planting practice;
(i) 
Dust control shall be used during grading operations if the grading is to occur within 500 feet of an occupied residence or place of business, school, playground, park, cemetery, or place of worship;
(j) 
During construction, temporary erosion and sedimentation control measures will be employed in accordance with the approved plan;
(k) 
During construction, any site access from a paved public way shall be improved with a gravel apron of 15 feet wide and at least 24 feet long to prevent unstable material from being transported onto the street by vehicle tires or by runoff;
(l) 
Until a disturbed area is permanently stabilized, sediment in runoff water shall be trapped by using a siltation barrier, siltation fences, and/or sedimentation traps;
(m) 
Dust control shall be used during grading operations if the grading is to occur within 500 feet of the property line of an occupied residence or place of business. Dust control methods may consist of grading fine soils on calm days only or dampening the ground with water;
(n) 
Permanent erosion control and vegetative measures shall be in accordance with the approved plan; and
(o) 
Where applicable, homeowner's, facility or condominium documents shall provide for the long-term operation and maintenance of all permanent erosion control and stormwater management measures, including surety.
(2) 
Based upon the nature of the application the Commission may impose reasonable requirements or limitations to minimize the impacts, if any, on abutting properties or uses.
(3) 
Prior to commencement of any land disturbing activity, the applicant shall record the permit with the Registry of Deeds or Registry District of the Land Court, and shall submit to the Commission written proof of such recording.
(4) 
At completion of the project, the owner shall submit as-built record drawings of all structural stormwater controls and treatment best management practices required for the site. The as-built drawing shall show deviations from the approved plans, if any, and shall be certified by a professional engineer registered in Massachusetts.
J. 
Actions by the Commission.
(1) 
The Commission shall act on each application for a permit within 90 days of the date of filing with the Commission and the Town Clerk, unless such application has been withdrawn from consideration.
(2) 
The Commission may take any of the following actions as a result of an application for a stormwater management and erosion control permit as more specifically defined as part of stormwater regulations promulgated as a result of this bylaw: approval, approval with conditions, disapproval, or disapproval without prejudice.
(3) 
A stormwater and erosion control permit may be disapproved if the Commission determines:
(a) 
The requirements of this Bylaw are not met; or
(b) 
The intent of the application is to circumvent other provisions of the Town's Zoning Code and regulations.
(4) 
Appeals of action by the Commission. A decision of the Commission shall be final. Relief of a decision by the Commission made under this bylaw shall be reviewable by the Zoning Board of Appeals, provided that such appeal is filed within 10 business days of the date the decision was filed with the Town Clerk. The remedies listed in this bylaw are not exclusive of any other remedies available under any applicable federal, state or local law.
K. 
Enforcement. The Commission or its authorized agent and the Town of Southborough shall have the power and duty to enforce this bylaw, its regulations, orders, violation notices, and enforcement orders, and may pursue all civil and criminal remedies for such violations.
(1) 
Penalties. Any person who violates any provision of this bylaw, regulation, or permit issued hereunder, shall be subject to fines, civil action, criminal prosecution, and tax liens, as appropriate and as lawfully established by the Town of Southborough.
(2) 
Tax liens. The Town of Southborough shall require the repayment of services provided to the responsible party that the responsible party was obligated to perform as set forth in the operation and maintenance plan. If repayment is not made within 30 days, the Town may impose a tax lien on the property of the responsible party or parties.
(3) 
Noncriminal disposition. As an alternative to criminal prosecution or civil action, the Town may utilize the noncriminal disposition procedure set forth in MGL c. 40, § 21D, in which case the Conservation Administrator, Conservation Agent or other authorized agent of the Town shall be the enforcing person.
L. 
Severability. Any determination that a particular provision or set of provisions in this bylaw is invalid or unenforceable shall not render ineffective, unenforceable, or inapplicable the remainder of this bylaw.
[Added 4-14-2015 ATM by Art. 26]
A. 
Purpose and intent.
(1) 
The purpose of this bylaw is to provide a permitting process and standards for the creation of new commercial solar energy systems by providing standards for the placement, design, construction, operation, monitoring, modification and removal of such installations to address public safety and minimize impacts on residential neighborhoods and scenic, natural and historic resources.
(2) 
The provisions set forth in this section shall apply to the construction, operation, repair and/or decommissioning of a commercial solar energy system that is structurally mounted on the ground and has a minimum nameplate capacity of 250 kW.
B. 
Applicability.
(1) 
Commercial large-scale ground-mounted solar energy systems with 250 kW or larger of rated nameplate capacity shall be erected or installed in compliance with the provisions of this section and other applicable sections of the Zoning Bylaw, as well as local, state and federal law and regulations. Such use shall not create a nuisance which is discernible from other properties by virtue of noise, vibration, smoke, dust, odors, heat, glare and radiation, unsightliness or other nuisances as determined by the special permit and site plan review granting authority. The special permit and site plan approval granting authority is the Planning Board.
(2) 
Commercial large-scale ground-mounted solar energy systems with 250 kW or larger of rated nameplate capacity are only allowed in the Industrial and Industrial Park Districts and shall undergo special permit and site plan review by the Planning Board prior to construction, installation or modification as provided in this section.
(3) 
This section also pertains to physical modifications that materially alter the type, configuration or size of these installations or related equipment throughout the useful life of the system or where alterations may impact abutters.
C. 
General requirements
(1) 
Dimensional requirements. A commercial solar energy system shall comply with all requirements in the Schedule of Dimensional Regulations in Addendum No. 2 of the Zoning Code of the Town of Southborough.
(2) 
Structures and panels. All structures and panels and all associated equipment and fencing, including the commercial solar energy system, shall be subject to all applicable bylaws and regulations concerning the bulk and height of structures, lot area, setbacks, open space, parking and building.
(3) 
Visual impact. The visual impact of the commercial solar energy system, including all accessory structures and appurtenances, shall be minimized. All accessory structures and appurtenances shall be architecturally compatible with each other. Structures shall be shielded from view and/or joined and clustered if practical to avoid adverse visual impacts as deemed necessary by and in the sole opinion of the Planning Board. Methods such as the use of landscaping, natural features and opaque fencing shall be utilized.
(4) 
Compliance with laws, ordinances and regulations. The construction and operation of all commercial solar energy systems shall be consistent with all applicable local regulations and bylaws, as well as state and federal laws, including but not limited to all applicable safety, construction, electrical, and communications requirements. All buildings and fixtures forming part of a commercial solar energy system shall be constructed in accordance with the State Building Code.
D. 
Design standards.
(1) 
Lighting. Lighting of the commercial solar energy system, including all accessory structures and appurtenances, shall not be permitted unless required by the Planning Board, special permit and site plan approval decision or required by the State Building Code.
(2) 
Signs and advertising.
(a) 
Section 174-11, Signs, of the Code of the Town of Southborough shall not apply to this section. Signage for commercial solar energy systems shall be limited in size as determined by the Planning Board.
(b) 
Commercial solar energy systems shall not be used for displaying any advertising except for reasonable identification of the owner or operator of the commercial solar energy system and emergency contact information.
(3) 
Utility connections. All utility connections from the commercial solar energy system shall be underground unless specifically permitted otherwise by a special permit and site plan approval decision. Electrical transformers, inverters, switchgear and metering equipment to enable utility interconnections may be aboveground if required by the utility provider.
(4) 
Land clearing, soil erosion and habitat impacts. Clearing of natural vegetation and trees shall be limited to what is necessary for the construction, operation and maintenance of the commercial solar energy system or otherwise prescribed by applicable laws, regulations and bylaws or the special permit and site plan review decisions.
E. 
Modifications. All substantive material modifications to the commercial solar energy system made after issuance of the special permit and site plan approval decision shall require modification to the special permit and site plan approval decision.
F. 
Abandonment and removal.
(1) 
Abandonment. Absent notice of a proposed date of decommissioning or written notice of extenuating circumstances, the commercial solar energy system shall be considered abandoned when it fails to operate at 50% capacity for more than one year without the written consent of the Planning Board. If the owner or operator of the commercial solar energy system fails to remove the installation in accordance with the requirements of this section within 150 days of abandonment or the proposed date of decommissioning, the Town may enter the property and physically remove the installation.
(2) 
Removal requirements. Any commercial solar energy system which has reached the end of its useful life or has been abandoned shall be removed. The owner or operator shall physically remove the installation no more than 150 days after the date of discontinued operations. The owner or operator shall notify the Planning Board by certified mail of the proposed date of discontinued operations and plans for removal.
G. 
Before issuance of any building permits for the commercial solar energy system, such construction and installation shall be secured in accordance with this bylaw and/or any regulations adopted pursuant to the commercial solar energy system for this purpose.
H. 
Building permit and building inspection. No commercial solar energy system shall be constructed, installed or modified as provided in this section without first obtaining a building permit.
I. 
The Planning Board may adopt regulations to implement the purpose of this bylaw.
J. 
Permit continuances. Special permit and site plan approval decisions shall be valid for a twelve-month period unless renewed or extended by the Planning Board following an application made by the applicant.
K. 
When acting on a special permit application pursuant to this article, the Planning Board shall conduct its review, hold a public hearing and file its decision with the Town Clerk as required by MGL c. 40A, § 9.
L. 
Approval criteria. In reviewing any application for a special permit pursuant to this article, the Planning Board shall give due consideration to promoting the public health, safety, convenience and welfare; shall encourage the most appropriate use of land and shall permit no structure or use that is injurious, noxious, offensive or detrimental to its neighborhood.
[Added 4-12-2016 ATM by Art. 27]
A. 
Purpose and intent.
(1) 
The purpose of this bylaw is to provide a permitting process and standards for the creation of new commercial solar energy systems by providing standards for the placement, design, construction, operation, monitoring, modification and removal of such installations to address public safety and minimize impacts on residential neighborhoods and scenic, natural and historic resources.
(2) 
The provisions set forth in this section shall apply to the construction, operation, repair and/or decommissioning of a commercial solar energy system that is structurally mounted on the ground and has a minimum nameplate capacity of 250 kW.
B. 
Applicability.
(1) 
Commercial large-scale ground-mounted solar energy systems with 250 kW or larger of rated nameplate capacity shall be erected or installed in compliance with the provisions of this section and other applicable sections of the Zoning Bylaw, as well as local, state and federal law and regulations. Such use shall not create a nuisance which is discernible from other properties by virtue of noise, vibration, smoke, dust, odors, heat, glare and radiation, unsightliness or other nuisances as determined by the site plan review granting authority. The site plan approval granting authority is the Planning Board.
(2) 
Commercial large-scale ground-mounted solar energy systems with 250 kW or larger of rated nameplate capacity identified in the Industrial and Industrial Park Districts Overlay District shall undergo site plan review by the Planning Board prior to construction, installation or modification as provided in this section.
(3) 
This section also pertains to physical modifications that materially alter the type, configuration or size of these installations or related equipment throughout the useful life of the system or where alterations may impact abutters.
C. 
Definitions.
AS-OF-RIGHT SITING
As-of-right siting shall mean that development may proceed without the need for a special permit. As-of-right solar installations under this section are subject to site plan review and regulated by the Building Commissioner.
BUILDING COMMISSIONER
Charged with the enforcement of the Zoning Bylaw.
BUILDING PERMIT
A construction permit issued by the Building Commissioner; the building permit evidences that the project is consistent with the state and federal building codes as well as local zoning bylaws, including those governing commercial large-scale ground-mounted solar energy systems.
DESIGNATED LOCATION
The location(s) designated by the Town of Southborough, in accordance with Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 40A, Section 5, where commercial large-scale ground-mounted solar energy systems may be sited as-of-right. Said location(s) are shown on a Zoning Map "Southborough Massachusetts Zoning Map" pursuant to Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 40A, Section 4. This map is hereby made a part of this Zoning Bylaw and is on file in the office of the Southborough Town Clerk.
D. 
General requirements.
(1) 
Dimensional requirements. A commercial solar energy system shall comply with all requirements in the Schedule of Dimensional Regulations in Addendum No. 2 of the Zoning Code of the Town of Southborough.
(2) 
Structures and panels. All structures and panels and all associated equipment and fencing, including the commercial solar energy system, shall be subject to all applicable bylaws and regulations concerning the bulk and height of structures, lot area, setbacks, open space, parking and building.
(3) 
Visual impact. The visual impact of the commercial solar energy system, including all accessory structures and appurtenances, shall be minimized. All accessory structures and appurtenances shall be architecturally compatible with each other. Structures shall be shielded from view and/or joined and clustered if practical to avoid adverse visual impacts as deemed necessary by and in the sole discretion of the Planning Board. Methods such as the use of landscaping, natural features and opaque fencing shall be utilized.
(4) 
Compliance with laws, ordinances and regulations. The construction and operation of all commercial solar energy systems shall be consistent with all applicable local regulations and bylaws, as well as state and federal laws, including but not limited to all applicable safety, construction, electrical, and communications requirements. All buildings and fixtures forming part of a commercial solar energy system shall be constructed in accordance with the State Building Code as may be determined by the Building Commissioner.
E. 
Design standards.
(1) 
Lighting. Lighting of the commercial solar energy system, including all accessory structures and appurtenances, shall not be permitted unless required by the Planning Board, special permit and site plan approval decision or required by the State Building Code.
(2) 
Signs and advertising.
(a) 
Section 174-11, Signs, of the Code of the Town of Southborough shall not apply to this section. Signage for commercial solar energy systems shall be limited in size as determined by the Planning Board.
(b) 
Commercial solar energy systems shall not be used for displaying any advertising except for reasonable identification of the owner or operator of the commercial solar energy system and emergency contact information.
(3) 
Utility connections. All utility connections from the commercial solar energy system shall be underground unless specifically permitted otherwise by a special permit and site plan approval decision. Electrical transformers, inverters, switchgear and metering equipment to enable utility interconnections may be aboveground if required by the utility provider.
(4) 
Land clearing, soil erosion and habitat impacts. Clearing of natural vegetation and trees shall be limited to what is necessary for the construction, operation and maintenance of the commercial solar energy system or otherwise prescribed by applicable laws, regulations and bylaws or the special permit and site plan review decisions.
F. 
Modifications. All substantive material modifications to the commercial solar energy system made after site plan approval shall require modification to the site plan approval decision.
G. 
Abandonment and removal.
(1) 
Abandonment. Absent notice of a proposed date of decommissioning or written notice of extenuating circumstances, the commercial solar energy system shall be considered abandoned when it fails to operate at 50% capacity for more than one year without the written consent of the Planning Board. If the owner or operator of the commercial solar energy system fails to remove the installation in accordance with the requirements of this section within 150 days of abandonment or the proposed date of decommissioning, the Town may enter the property and physically remove the installation.
(2) 
Removal requirements. Any commercial solar energy system which has reached the end of its useful life or has been abandoned shall be removed. The owner or operator shall physically remove the installation no more than 150 days after the date of discontinued operations. The owner or operator shall notify the Planning Board, by first class and certified mail, return receipt requested, of the proposed date of discontinued operations and plans for removal.
H. 
To the extent permissible by applicable law, before issuance of any building permits for the commercial solar energy system, such construction and installation shall be secured in accordance with this bylaw and/or any regulations adopted pursuant to the commercial solar energy system for this purpose.
I. 
Building permit and building inspection. No commercial solar energy system shall be constructed, installed or modified as provided in this section without first obtaining a building permit.
J. 
The Planning Board may promulgate rules and regulations to implement the intent and purpose of this bylaw.
K. 
Permit continuances. The site plan approval decision shall be valid for a twelve-month period unless renewed or extended by the Planning Board following an application made by the applicant.
L. 
When acting on a site plan review of the application pursuant to this article, the Planning Board shall conduct its review, conduct a public hearing and file its decision with the Town Clerk.
M. 
Approval criteria. In reviewing any application for a site plan pursuant to this article, the Planning Board shall give due consideration to promoting the public health, safety, convenience and welfare; shall encourage the most appropriate use of land and shall permit no structure or use that is injurious, noxious, offensive or detrimental to its neighborhood.
N. 
Any person aggrieved by the action of the Planning Board on a site plan approval application may appeal said action to the Zoning Board of Appeals as provided in Article VI of this chapter of the Southborough Code.
[Added 4-25-2017 ATM by Art. 26]
A. 
Purpose and intent.
(1) 
The purpose of this section is to allow for and provide incentives for the adaptive reuse of historical buildings in a manner that ensures compatibility with their surroundings and that preserves their historical nature and appearance. This section is intended to promote the preservation of historic buildings by allowing historic buildings to be adapted for a purpose other than that for which they were originally built, thereby enhancing the community's appearance and preserving Southborough's architectural legacy for future generations.
(2) 
The incentives of this § 174-13.8 are allowed only by special permit from the special permit granting authority (SPGA), which shall be the Planning Board. The incentives include the creation of alternative uses for historic buildings while maintaining controls to accomplish the following objectives:
(a) 
Preserve the exterior features of such historic buildings to ensure sensitivity and compatibility with the surrounding neighborhoods; and
(b) 
Provide an economic incentive to maintain and rehabilitate historic buildings.
(c) 
Encourage the adaptive reuse of historic buildings where such reuse will more effectively preserve and enhance the architectural character of the surrounding neighborhood than would the redevelopment of the site upon demolition or significant exterior modification to these historic buildings.
(3) 
It is not the intent or requirement of the section that all renovations to all historic buildings must be applied for and approved under this section. It is a voluntary choice to be made by the applicant if the applicant wishes to take advantage of the incentives provided herein.
B. 
Uses permitted. Any uses permitted in the zoning district in which the historic building is located shall be permitted by right. The following uses are only allowed by special permit pursuant to § 174-9 except as provided herein, and are subject to the site plan approval process pursuant to § 174-10 except as provided herein.
(1) 
Residential buildings, including single-family houses with or without accessory structures:
(a) 
Accessory apartments. One accessory apartment or separate rental unit. The accessory apartment shall comply with the following conditions and requirements:
[1] 
The habitable floor area of the accessory unit shall not exceed 35% of the habitable floor area of the entire dwelling, plus that of any accessory building used for the accessory dwelling.
[2] 
There is no other apartment on the lot on which the accessory apartment is proposed.
[3] 
Not more than the required minimum exterior alterations will be made to the single-family house and to any accessory buildings as determined by the SPGA upon written recommendation of the Historical Commission.
[4] 
The number of accessory apartments approved under this section shall not be subject to § 174-9B(4), which limits the number of accessory apartments that can be permitted.
(b) 
Customary home occupations: the use of a portion, not exceeding 35%, of a one-family home, including the accessory buildings, by persons resident therein, for a gainful occupation that is clearly incidental and secondary to the use as a residence and may not employ more than three persons not resident therein. All other provisions of customary home occupations, as defined in § 174-2, shall continue to apply.
(c) 
The following uses, which are deemed to be outside the normal definition of customary home occupations, shall comply with all the requirements of Subsection B(1)(b) above, provided the residential building is the primary residence of the owner for voting and property tax purposes and subject to hours of operation to be specified by the SPGA.
[1] 
Art gallery.
[2] 
Florist.
[3] 
Antique shop.
[4] 
Bakery without customer seating.
[5] 
Publisher.
[6] 
Professional office.
[7] 
Other similar uses allowed by SPGA on the recommendation of the Historical Commission.
(d) 
Renting of rooms including bed and breakfast to more than four persons by a resident family in a one-family house, with the number of persons above four to be determined by the SPGA.
(2) 
Commercial/municipal buildings:
(a) 
All uses listed in Subsection B(1) above, but with no limit on floor area or number of employees.
(b) 
Apartments or condominiums.
(c) 
Child care facility and/or elder care facility.
(d) 
Medical clinic and ancillary offices and facilities.
(e) 
Research and development uses, excluding ancillary manufacturing, assembly, sale or resale (or storage for sale or resale) of any goods, items, or materials.
(f) 
Restaurant/pub.
(g) 
Educational facilities.
(h) 
Athletic/recreational uses.
(i) 
Mail order business.
(3) 
Prohibited uses: The following uses, occupations and activities are expressly prohibited:
(a) 
Commercial servicing, maintenance, or restoration of motor vehicles.
(b) 
Trucking or warehousing activities.
(c) 
Sale of articles (except as provided in the Subsections B(1) and (2) above).
(d) 
Other uses, occupations and activities that are prohibited elsewhere in Chapter 174.
(4) 
Multiple or mixed uses:
(a) 
For residential buildings, there will be no more than two uses, as identified in Subsection B(1)(c) above, provided that the uses are compatible with each other and comply with § 174-9, except as provided herein. Regardless of the number of uses allowed by the SPGA, there shall be no more than three persons employed who are not resident therein, and the use of a portion of a one-family home, including accessory buildings, shall not exceed 35%.
(b) 
For commercial/municipal buildings, there will be no more than three uses as identified in Subsection B(2) above, provided that the uses are compatible with each other and comply with § 174-9 except as provided herein.
C. 
Controls on dimensions and restoration/renovation.
(1) 
Controls on dimensions: Changes to the size of the building, or exterior dimensions of such building shall be subject to dimensional controls of the Town's Zoning Bylaw, unless modified by special permit pursuant to § 174-9 and/or § 174-19, or as permitted under this section. For any reuse of a Historic Building, the following provisions shall apply:
(a) 
An increase in the footprint of the building being considered for reuse will be permitted, provided the proposed increase expands by no more than 15% of the square footage of the existing structure's footprint, conforms to existing setback requirements, does not increase any nonconformity of the existing structure and is required by one or both of the following:
[1] 
Conformity with provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
[2] 
A reuse that requires functional or structural changes necessary for the intended new use, as consistent with state building codes or as required by the Building Commissioner.
(b) 
Except for the historic building, accessways, walkways, required parking and loading spaces, the open area of the entire site shall not be diminished. Such open area shall be left in its existing condition or improved so as to be appropriate in size, shape, dimension, location and character to assure its proper functioning as an amenity for the site.
(c) 
No permanent additional buildings or structures of any type, and no enclosed storage of any kind, shall be allowed except as permitted by the SPGA.
(2) 
Controls on restoration/renovation:
(a) 
There shall be no change to the architectural footprint except as allowed pursuant to Subsection C(1)(a) above.
(b) 
External architectural features shall be preserved and/or restored per the recommendation of the Historical Commission.
(c) 
Exterior restoration shall follow the preservation guidelines outlined in the Federal Secretary of Interior Standards for Rehabilitation on file with the Town Clerk's office, and the applicant must submit a letter of findings from the Southborough Historical Commission as part of the submission of the application to the SPGA.
D. 
Application submission requirements and procedure.
(1) 
Pre-application review. Prior to submitting a formal application, the applicant is strongly encouraged to request a pre-application review to be held at a public meeting of the SPGA. The purpose of the pre-application review is to simplify the process for applicants and to commence discussions with the SPGA at the earliest possible stage of development. At the pre-application review, the applicant may outline the proposed project for adaptive reuse, seek preliminary feedback from the SPGA and the Historical Commission and/or their technical experts, and set a timetable for submitting a formal application. While no formal filings are required for the pre-application review, the applicant is encouraged to prepare sufficient preliminary architectural and/or engineering drawings to provide the SPGA with clarity regarding the scale and overall design of the proposed project. Nothing in the pre-application process should suggest a subsequent grant of a special permit which must stand separate on later submittals.
(2) 
Historical Commission review. The applicant shall submit their proposal to the Historical Commission for review.
(3) 
Formal application submission requirements for the special permit. Applicants for an adaptive reuse of historic buildings special permit shall file with the SPGA 17 copies of submission materials, of which 10 sets of the plans should be full size and the balance in 11" x 17" format, and one electronic version of the plans. Submission materials shall include the following:
(a) 
A narrative stating the historical significance of the structures and/or site, and an architectural description of the structures.
(b) 
Photographs of all existing elevations.
(c) 
Interior floor plan(s) showing the proposed uses of interior space with the gross floor area for each use.
(d) 
Proposed outdoor lighting.
(e) 
Parking - existing and proposed.
(f) 
If new construction or additions are proposed, a perspective drawing showing the new construction or additions in relation to existing structure(s) on the site and on adjacent land.
(g) 
A letter of findings from the Historical Commission on whether the project complies with the dimension and restoration/renovation controls cited in Subsection C above.
(h) 
A plan showing existing and proposed landscaping on the site.
(i) 
Adequate waste disposal and surface and subsurface stormwater drainage. Site plans and specifications shall be submitted with the application and shall be prepared, signed and stamped by a registered land surveyor, registered professional engineer or registered architect. At the time of special permit application filing, the applicant shall submit copies of all such plans to the Building Commissioner, Board of Health, and other appropriate authorities as may be directed by the SPGA. The SPGA shall solicit and consider comments relative to the proposed project from such boards, commissions, committees, authorities and individual residents.
(j) 
Additional information or supplemental impact statement(s), as requested by the SPGA, based on the project's scope and the physical characteristics of the parcel.
(k) 
The SPGA, at its discretion, may reasonably modify or waive the application submission requirements herein to stay consistent with the intent and purpose of this section of the Zoning Bylaw.
E. 
Special permit application review procedure:
(1) 
Once an application for adaptive reuse of historic buildings special permit has been filed under this section, no structure shall be erected, enlarged or modified; and no land shall be divided, subdivided or modified prior to the granting or denial of said permit.
(2) 
The adaptive reuse of historic buildings special permit application shall be submitted, considered, and issued in accordance with the provisions herein, with the Zoning Bylaw and with all other applicable regulations.
(3) 
Prior to the filing of an application for an adaptive reuse of historic buildings special permit, the applicant shall submit plans to the Building Commissioner, who shall advise the applicant as to the pertinent sections of the Zoning Bylaw.
(4) 
Following the Building Commissioner's review, the applicant shall submit copies of the application to the SPGA.
(5) 
Pursuant to M.G.L., c. 40A, § 9, and after due notice, the SPGA shall hold a public hearing.
(6) 
All boards, commissions and departments which have relevant jurisdiction over this proposed project shall, within 35 days of receiving a copy of said application, submit a written report containing recommendations with supporting reasons to the SPGA and may recommend conditions deemed appropriate for the proposed use. The SPGA shall not render a decision on any such application until said recommendations have been received and considered or until the thirty-five-day period has expired, whichever is earlier. Failure of such agencies to timely submit their respective recommendations shall be deemed concurrence thereto.
F. 
Decision and special permit criteria.
(1) 
The SPGA shall have the authority to approve, disapprove or approve with conditions an adaptive reuse of historic buildings special permit. Any disapproval by the SPGA shall include identification of any modifications to the plan that would make it acceptable to the SPGA if the applicant subsequently decides to make a new application. This authority shall not eliminate, decrease or abrogate the powers of any other Town board, committee, commission or other authority having legal jurisdiction, except to the extent that such authority is specifically granted by this section. It shall be the duty and responsibility of the applicant to secure any and all other permits, licenses and approvals necessary to the project.
(2) 
The criteria for decision shall be consistent with § 174-9 and shall include the following:
(a) 
Preservation: the proposal preserves the historic building's exterior features to ensure sensitivity and compatibility with the surrounding neighborhood(s).
(b) 
The incentives granted shall be appropriate in degree and type to the scale and benefits the project will provide.
(c) 
Uses permitted: The reuse of buildings and the lot are consistent with the uses allowed in Subsection B.
(d) 
Adequate access and parking: There are adequate provisions for safe access for pedestrians, motor vehicles and emergency services to the building and to the land on which it is situated.
(3) 
The adaptive reuse of historic buildings special permit shall run with the land.
G. 
Site plan review process. In order to provide a detailed design review of any reuse of historic buildings for which an adaptive reuse of historic buildings special permit is being sought, there shall be a site plan review by the Planning Board as described in § 174-10.