Proposed farm stand earns good marks in Comprehensive Planning Commission talks
Rockland — Stephen Carroll wants to convert his home at Lake Avenue and Old County Road into a local farm stand and agricultural market.
At first he had considered asking for a zoning adjustment for his property. But now he believes he can accomplish the same objective by seeking a conditional use change that would allow his idea to fit in with the Comprehensive Planning Commission's rural residential rezoning proposal for the area from Old County Road to Bog Road.
Carroll appeared before the commission Thursday, Sept. 6 with Rockland Code Officer John Root to explain the idea.
The farm stand and agricultural market would be a facility used for retail marketing of agricultural output of farms in Knox, Lincoln or Waldo counties. In addition, such use would permit retail sales of articles of home and manufactured products, such as jams, jellies, maple products, cheese, cider, herbs and spices, baked goods, wreathes and flower arrangements.
The stand would also sell soaps, candles, pottery and similar products from small-scale artisans.
"It fits in with what we're proposing to do with our agricultural concept," said Root.
The commission members discussed parking spaces related to the farm stand in the neighborhood. Commission Chairman Frank Isganitis noted that the corner will be in a higher traffic area with the coming of the new Walmart store in Thomaston. Drivers coming off Route 17 would cross Old County Road to the section of Thomaston where the discount store will be.
The commission discussed limits that would be imposed on the stand. When Carroll said he would not need all the limits, such as a limited number of parking spaces or frontage on Old County Road, Assistant Code Enforcement Officer David Kalloch reminded Carroll that the changes he sought would apply not just to him, but to anyone, as well.
"We have to look at the big picture," Kalloch said.
Isganitis said he would like to incorporate all the ideas talked about that night and "have one more go-through" and bring back a document within a month or so.
The discussion was part of a long-range proposal for rural residential zoning the commission has considered for several months.
There was a public hearing March 29 at which 20 people spoke.
Isganitis later summarized the points of the hearing into three categories: (1) the reintroduction of Home Occupation Level 3 in the proposed zone; (2) inclusion of small schools; and (3) reduction of the proposed five-acre minimum lot size down to two acres.
In other business Sept. 6, the commission amended Ordinance Amendment 18, the definition of home occupations, to change the hours of single pupil instruction at all three levels of home occupation from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. to 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
The City Council plans to act on the amendment Sept. 10.
Courier Publications reporter George Chappell can be reached at 207-594-4401, or firstname.lastname@example.org.