Paramount Development Group (PDG), located in Massachusetts and having little or no ties to the community, is seeking 7 major zoning variances from the Town of Scituate, as well as a “special use permit”, to refurbish the old mill located on the main street of our village. Their proposal is to construct 193 rental apartments on 32 acres (approximately 37%) of total Hope land. This will be accomplished by constructing two new 5 story apartment buildings, to the rear of the mill. Development of the mill is entirely centered around providing exclusively (100%) affordable housing. This project (consisting of only 39% market rate rentals behind the mill) is being promoted as a way to meet the entire Town of Scituate’s deficiency in “Affordable Housing”. However, the project, in its current proposed state, concerns many Hope (and Scituate) citizens due to its enormity and therefore potential impact on taxes, septic, parking, education, crime, traffic and more. As it stands, after development, our current understanding is that taxes will not have to be paid on any units that are unoccupied, in addition to a substancial tax credit from the Town of Scituate and 100% tax relief while under construction. The following variances were denied by the zoning board. Now Paramount has submitted an application for the same project under a Comprehensive Permit seeking approval by the Scituate Planning Board. There is no change in the plan. They are requesting the same variances and special use permit listed below.
A) Article Ill, Section 3 (5): Dimensional variance to have less than the required lot size and to exceed the allowed density.
B) Article Ill Section 3 (5): Dimensional variance to have less than the required lot width.
C) Article Ill Section 1: Dimensional variance to have less than the required front setback.
D) Article Ill Section l: Dimensional variance to exceed the maximum building height. (This includes the new construction of two 5 story buildings behind the mill)
E) Article Ill Section 3 (10) (a): Dimensional variance to have less than the required number of parking spaces. (This is a safety concern, as it would potentially result in street parking on one of our busiest roads, close to Hope Elementary School. The proposed number of parking spaces is inadequate to meet the needs of all tenants)
F) Article Ill Section 3 (10) (b): Dimensional variance to have less than the required parking setback.
G) Article IV Section 7: Dimensional variance to have a sewerage disposal system with less than the required setback from a water body. (The septic will be located on a peninsula where the river converges at the rear of the property)
Additionally, the Scituate Zoning Board of Review will consider the following special use permit:
H) Article Il, Section 2.3: The applicant is requesting a Special Use Permit to have a 193-unit multi-family residential development on a property consisting of approximately 32.22 acres.
Funding from this page will be used to achieve our goal of hiring legal council as well as experts on the afore mentioned issues. We are uncertain as to exactly how much money will be needed or how much would be spent over the course of this process, although it has been estimated at many thousands. The idea is to take each step one at a time and attempt to have the voice of the people heard. We have reached step two. We continue to need council and experts to appeal decisions that have already been made, and/or go to court to argue the suitability of this project in our community. Not many residents are opposed to a renovation of this beautiful mill; most are concerned with the size and potentially harmful impacts a proposal of this magnitude would have on our small and intimate Village.
If you are able to provide assistance please consider donating to our page and helping to spread the word.
Hope Mill Concerned Citizens
- Robert Quattrocchi
- Rick L
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