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Library construction to continue despite appeal

By Gabriel Blodgett | Jul 02, 2019
Photo by: File photo Construction on the Rockport Library will continue despite an appeal of the building permit.

Rockport — Construction on the Rockport Public Library will continue as originally planned, despite a neighbor's appeal of the building permit issued to Phi Builders + Architects.

“We will not be stopping construction during the appeal process,” said outgoing Town Manager Rick Bates, who will continue to represent the town as a consultant through the completion of the library project.

The appeal was filed by Stephen Earle, who lives directly uphill from the library site at 3 Limerock St. He is represented by the law firm Strout & Payson. The appeal states that “the Applicant was not subject to meaningful review by the Town of Rockport and there has been no showing that the Applicant has complied with the Town’s Ordinances.”

Farley and Son has continued excavation and stream work on the site since the June 20 appeal. However, that work is authorized by different permits for filling and excavating and flood hazard development that were issued May 23. The building permit was issued to Phi on May 22 by Code Enforcement Officer Scott Bickford.

Phi had previously stated that it planned to have the building closed in by winter, but following the appeal, directed all questions to Bates.

The Zoning Board of Appeals is tentatively scheduled to hear the appeal at an Aug. 14 meeting. The hearing was initially scheduled for July 10, but was postponed. ZBA Vice Chair George Benson resigned from his position after the initial meeting date was set.

According to the town’s Site Review Ordinance, “Appeals from decisions of the Board of Appeals may be taken by an aggrieved party to the Superior Court … within forty-five days” of the date of the decision.

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