Zoning Board approves plan for Metacom apartment building

Developer gets zoning approval for 18 apartments in new building near Bristol town line

By Ethan Hartley
Posted 7/27/21

The Warren Zoning Board unanimously approved a request from residents Denise and Michael O’Brien for a special use permit to convert two lots located at 665 Metacom Ave. into an 18-unit …

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Zoning Board approves plan for Metacom apartment building

Developer gets zoning approval for 18 apartments in new building near Bristol town line

Posted

The Warren Zoning Board unanimously approved a request from residents Denise and Michael O’Brien for a special use permit to convert two lots located at 665 Metacom Ave. into an 18-unit apartment building during its meeting on Wednesday evening.

The board found that the apartment building, which still requires approval by the Warren Planning Board pending the presentation of a stormwater study, is in line with other uses in the neighborhood and is compatible with the town’s comprehensive plan.

The 2.27-acre stretch of land was formerly owned by the late Robert Healey.

Zoning board approval was granted on the conditions that once the building is constructed, garbage pickup from its on-site dumpster would not occur before 8 a.m. and any lighting on the property would not intrude onto surrounding properties.

“There is a need for apartment buildings and this type of housing. There is demand for market-rate apartments,” said Andrew Tine, an attorney representing the applicants. “This is a great location for it.”

Tine told the board that the project is in line with other uses, pointing to the fact that there is an existing apartment complex that consists of multiple buildings across the street at 700 Metacom Ave., which contains more units than the building they are proposing, and that Metacom Avenue is already a central hub of mixed commercial and residential properties.

Project designer David D’Amico, principal and founder of D’Amico Engineering Technology, Inc. of Providence, then went through a presentation featuring technical drawings of the project and how the apartment building would be situated on the lots. Mr. D’Amico showed there would be 28 parking spaces, above the required threshold of 1.5 spaces per unit.

Water and traffic?

One concern voiced by multiple residents during the meeting was that the development would contribute to additional stormwater runoff onto Metacom Avenue. D’Amico said that the natural grading of the land and installation of crushed stone drains beneath the permeable asphalt would be more than adequate measures to handle all stormwater on-site without runoff becoming an issue.

Other questions included whether the building would contribute to traffic, but a traffic study is not required due to the small number of units. The applicant did supply traffic data, however, that showed the building would contribute an additional 13 cars during peak morning traffic and 18 additional cars during the evening rush.

One resident asked what would happen with the other land located within the plot — part of which contains an existing single-family home. Michael O’Brien answered that the house would be turned into a leasing office for the new apartment building and other apartment complexes that he owns.

The owners are not allowed to build any other units or structures on the remaining land without additional approval from the town’s planning and zoning boards.

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