Category Archives: Downtown

Mural on side of Brothers Marketplace

This is what the mural on the side of the Brothers Marketplace is going to look like, per the plans submitted to the town, that are displayed on an easel just inside the front door of the Town House.  The photo and the intelligence to take the photo are both courtesy of much missed former Medfield Patch editor, par extraordinaire, Theresa Knapp.

photo of mural

Brothers Marketplace to open 7/30

The new Brothers Marketplace will open July 30, per a press release from them.  I was told by Rob Gregg this morning that the mural on the South Street wall is going to be of a photograph of the Lord’s store from 50-60 years ago with diagonally parked cars.  However, Mike Sullivan told me last week the mural would be of The Emperor Onion Store.  Maybe if the photo is old enough it was The Emperor Onion store – i do not know my Medfield history ell enough to know.

Medfield was originally the first of this new store design for Roche Bros., but the press release says we are their second, so one other one got build out faster.

Brothers opening by 7/31

Mike Sullivan reported at the Board of Selectmen meeting last night that the new Brothers Marketplace will open by July 31.  Mike also stated that the selectmen can tour the completed DPW garage on August 9.

Cultural Alliance of Medfield

Rob Gregg presented the following report to the Board of Selectmen last night on the Cultural Alliance of Medfield’s s work and status.

The Selectmen’s meeting focused on the downtown, and had reports from nine separate groups that deal with differing aspects of the downtown (see the agenda I posted for the full list of groups represented).  Richard and I both opined the we found it hugely interesting and helpful, and endorsed a next step of holding a visioning “summit” or “charrette” in the fall focused specifically on the downtown, in order to craft the strategy and agenda for moving forward.  By contrast, Mark said that hearing from all the groups took too much time away from the selectmen doing their work, and that he would curtail such reports.

July 15th meeting with the Selectmen


The Medfield Cultural District appreciates this brief opportunity to acquaint you with two particular aspects of our organization while addressing how those impact downtown redevelopment.


First, we are comprised of seven members: Kirsten D’Abate, Jean Mineo, Deborah Kelsey, Diane Borrelli, Sarah Reposa, Bill Pope, and myself. We will very much miss Deborah‘s energetic participation, and we wish her just the best as she takes her skillset to Gloucester. In her stead, Alex Lunt, our Senior Librarian, will give his leadership.


We meet monthly at the library to tackle a wide range of opportunities which are focused on increasing local and visitor spending.   At the moment we are exploring how best to maximize the experience anyone has when visiting cultural sites in Medfield, some of these being attached to history, commerce, recreation, and the arts.


Another agenda item is to decide how best to promote a community-wide calendar. Amid all our challenging tasks, we are moving ahead to acquire designation as a non-profit charitable organization and to consider how a part-time leadership position can better leverage both public and private perceptions of delivering cultural activities.


To embody our focus as to how Medfield’s assets are differentiated from those in any other community, we have changed our name to the Culturalliance of Medfield. Inasmuch as we will designate over time a number of cultural districts within the town, we felt than a name change would clarify our organization and allow for additional districts to be included. Thus, Medfield will have a variety of cultural districts identified by name and geography. A good metaphor for the alliance is an umbrella which gathers underneath it a variety of persons and organizations needing collective coverage.


Item number two. The Culturalliance is learning valuable lessons in our process to differentiate Medfield’s cultural amenities from those in every other town. We constantly ask ourselves this question: “Why do these set us apart from other communities?” We are always narrowing our focus. In doing so, we are learning to jettison the generic. What is it that Medfield wants to be known for? What do we need to do to own it? If one might say a brand could be “Preserve the Past, Engage the Future,” then we ask, “How is this different from every other community who wants to do the same?” The answer is, it really isn’t. Our strategy is to move beyond the first level of creativity.


Both visitors and locals perceive Medfield for what it is – good or bad. What is it that sets us apart from any other community?



The Culturalliance of Medfield responds positively to the need to rejuvenate downtown Medfield, in fact all that lies within its borders. To that end, Medfield needs to be much more specific in finding its niche. Why do visitors come to town? How soon will they return? What will they tell their friends about their experiences here?


The Culturalliance champions community branding as a process which involves the entire population of this town. A brand is the preservation of an essence. We cannot build a successful brand using focus groups because a “group-hug mentality” will only give us a watered-down generic brand, a “one size fits all,” which is not a brand at all.


Small towns across America are succeeding today in setting themselves apart. Travelers Rest, South Carolina, a town one-third the size of Medfield, has repositioned itself from being a gateway community to now being a destination. Opelousas, Louisiana, twice the size of Medfield, now brands itself as perfectly seasoned, with a flavored history, music with a spice, and a zest for life with its flavored food. Springfield, Vermont, identical in population to Medfield, overcame its predicament as a pass-through town for commuters (doesn’t this sound familiar?), with a brand which resonates its reinvention.


Part of your agenda tonight is to hear from ten different organizations as to Medfield’s downtown redevelopment. Each of these can admirably tell you what they are doing, and some can tell you how they are doing it. What is missing to our collective response is why we are doing what we are doing. Economic development requires community-wide participation in establishing how we want people to think of us. The answers to what we do and how we do it are easy to identify. You will hear them tonight.   Instead of looking at Medfield from the outside in (what ?, how?, why?), our suggestion is to reverse this process. Look from the inside out. That begins by asking the question “why.”   Why are we different from any other town? Why do people come here? In today’s economy, the answer starts with the experiences of locals and visitors when they are here. Only then will we know why, and if, Medfield is inspiring.



BoS goals (draft)

The selectmen annually designate their goals, and to that end about a month ago the three selectmen each individually penned his goals for our board for the next year.  Richard DeSorgher then took the three versions and combined them into this composite.

Draft Board of Selectmen Goals for 2014-2105

I. Communications

  1. Promote and encourage a collegial and supportive atmosphere for all volunteer committees and boards, ensure that their voices are heard and their work recognized. Promote and encourage supportive atmospheres with the Board of Selectmen and our Town Administrator, Superintendent of Schools and all department heads and employees
  2. Implement a push system to get residents town government information
  3. Improve the town’s web site


II. Planning

  1. Develop a town master plan, and review and/or expand what was called for in the Vision and Action Plan for the Downtown, adopted in 2006 by the Downtown Study Committee
  2. Work with the Town Administrator and Assistant Town Administrator to look at the future make-up of the management staff of the town
  3. get a five-year plan from department heads and committees
  4. Implement an affordable housing plan
  5. Get by-laws concerning future development of the former Medfield State Hospital
  6. Adopt Green Community Act
  7. Install solar PV sites, issue RFP’s to buy solar power and look at ways to develop power purchase agreements for PV power
  8. Work with the Solid Waste Committee to explore ways to increase recycling rates


III. Medfield State Hospital

  1. Continue to provide direction and leadership as the town and the re-development committee move forward with the clean-up and redevelopment of the former Medfield State Hospital.


IV.  Finances

  1. create a business office for the town
  2. Support the annual budget process and implement a three-year financial forecast
  3. Implement property tax relief for senior citizens
  4. Explore financial saving potential and pro and cons of ways to increase additional revenue including adopting the Community Preservation Act, selling town water and encouraging the Economic Development Committee to work towards bringing clean industry, business and housing (Old Medfield Square example)to the town, including development of Lot #3/Hinkley Lot off Ice House Road.
  5. Complete union contract negotiations before contracts expire and analyze all overtime expenditures.


V. Downtown

  1. Work to develop a robust, business-friendly and pedestrian-friendly downtown
  2. Meet with and review all boards overseeing downtown development and analyze and combine if necessary similar committees.
  3. Explore with the Planning Board the formation of a Design and Review Committee.
  4. Work with the Chief of Police on traffic and parking issues concerning
    1. Traffic and lights along RT 109 and RT 27 (RT 27 at both RT 109 and at South Street)
    2. Sidewalk expansion
    3. Upham Road
    4. Potential future parking sites


VI. Support for the new public safety building, through, hearings and town meeting action until final completion

Public Safety Bld variance approved by ZBA

The Zoning Board of Appeals today issued its decision approving the variances sought by the town to construct the proposed public safety building. The variances granted were as follows:

  • Section 6.3 for the increase in lot coverage from 54% to 68%
  • Section 6.2.3 for construction of a driveway greater than 24 feet
  • Section 8.1 for provision of 50 parking spaces instead of the required 60 spaces
  • Section 8.3.2.e for construction of an entrance within 140 feet of the centerline of an intersection
  • Section 8.3.2.f to provide more than one egress to the site with all driveways exceeding 24 feet in width
  • Section 16.8.2 for construction of 40% impervious area on a nonresidential lot

The decision follows:

Office ofthe
(508) 906-3027
(508) 359- 6182 Fax
Instructions following the receipt of a decision;
• Your decision was filed with the Town Clerk on: July I I, 2014
• Your 20 day appeal period ends: July 31,2014
• On August I, 2014 or thereafter you should contact this office for the decision with
original signatures as well as a letter from the Town Clerk that no appeals have been
taken regarding the Board’s decision.
• Take the Town Clerk’s leiter & the decision to the Registry of Deeds in Dedham and
record them. (There is a fee of around $75 according to recent filings.)
Norfolk County Registry of Deeds
649 High St, Dedham, MA
(78 I) 46 I-6 I0 I
Directions from Town Hall, Medfield:
• Take 109 East to Dedham
• Bear Right on High Street
• Destination will be on the left in approximate Y, mile
• Note: On street meter parking or parking in rear (wi fee)
• Save the numbers they will give you as proof of recording. Call or email the office
and give us the Book and Page numbers. This is a required part of the process!
• When you apply to the Building Department for a permit, you will also give them the
Book and Page numbers.
Sarah Raposa
Town Planner
(508) 906-3027

Office of the
Board of Appeals on Zoning
(508) 906-3027
(508) 359- 6182 Fax
ApPLICANT: Town of Medfield
DECISION DATE: July 11,2014
The Town of Medfield Zoning Board of Appeals, acting in the above referenced malter, grants with
conditions the Application of the Town of Medfield for variances from the following sections of the
Zoning By Law so as to permit the construction of a new public safety building at 114 North Street,
Medfield, Massachusetts:
• Section 6.3 for the increase in lot coverage from 54% to 68%
• Section 6.2.3 for construction of a driveway greater than 24 feet
• Section 8.1 for provision of 50 parking spaces instead of the required 60 spaces
• Section 8.3.2.e for construction of an entrance within 140 feet of the centerline of an intersection
• Section 8.3.2.fto provide more than one egress to the site with all driveways exceeding 24 feet in
• Section 16.8.2 for construction of40% impervious area on a nonresidential lot
An appeal of this decision of the permit granting authority may be made by any person aggrieved
pursuant to MOL Chapter 40A Section 17, as amended, within 20 days after the date of filing the notice
of decision in the Office of the Town Clerk.
Copies of the decision may be obtained at the office of the Board of Appeals in person or via email.
Sarah Raposa
Town Planner
(508) 906-3027

Office of the
(508) 359-8505 ext. 645
(508) 359- 6182 Fax
No. 1209
July 11,2014
Decision o/the Board 0/Appeals on the petition of Town o/Medfield
Property owned by: Town of Medfield
Location of Property: 114 North Street, Medfield, Massachusetts
Norfolk County Registry of Deeds: Book: 2823 Page: 35
Medfield Assessors’ Record: Map: 49 Lot: 084
Zoning District: RU

By application dated April 2, 2014, which was filed with the Board of
Appeals on April 3, 2014, the Town of Medfield, 114 North Street, Medfield,
Massachusetts 02052 (the “Applicant”) seeks a variance from Sections 6.3 (lot
coverage), 6.2 and 6.3.l.a (height), 6.2.3 (driveway width), 8.1 (parking spaces),
8.3.2.e (entrance distance from intersection), 8.3.2.f(multiple egress) and 16.8.2
(impervious area) of the Zoning By-Law and a Special Permit under Section II of the
Zoning By-Law in order to allow construction of a new public safety building at
114 North Street, Medfield, Massachusetts (the “Property”). Notice of the
Application was published in the Medfield Press on April 25 and May 2,2014 and a
public hearing was held on May 14,2014. Notice of the Application and hearing was
provided to the Applicant, to abutters, to appropriate Town boards and officials and to
the planning boards of abutting towns. The hearing was called to order by
Public Safety Building – page I -

Stephen M. Nolan, Chainnan, on May 14,2014 at 7:50 p.m. The Applicant was
represented at the hearing by members of the Permanent Building Committee
(“PBC”), including one of its co-chairs, John Nunnery.
Mr. Nunnery explained that the Applicant wishes to construct a new public
safety building on the Property (the “Proposed Building”). Mr. Nunnery went on to
explain that the project would require Town Meeting approval and an operational
override. If approved, the project could begin in Spring 2015 and would take 16-18
months to complete; the Proposed Building would be up and operating in 2016,
according to Mr. Nunnery.
Richard Almeida, the architect for the Proposed Building, said the height of
the proposed tower on the Proposed Building would be 51 feet, 6 inches. He said the
top of the clock would be decorative. Mr. Nunnery said the roof beside the tower is
an area they need for mechanical equipment. Mr. Peck inquired about the bulk of the
Proposed Building to which Mr. Nunnery said they were trying to provide an
“anchor” to the downtown district. Architect Almeida indicated that the increased
height is required to use the mechanical units on the roof which otherwise would be
exposed to the neighbors. By keeping them inside, they will not be seen, there will be
less noise and the units will last longer.
Thomas Perry with PARE Corporation, the civil engineer for the Project,
reviewed the variances being sought:
6.3, Lot Coverage: Section allows for 35% coverage but the proposed project is 68
6.2.3, Driveways: Section prohibits driveways wider than 24 feet, but the proposed

Public Safety Building – page 2 -

driveway is 135 feet in width.
8.1, Off-Street Parking: According to the Applicant’s calculations, the number of
required spaces would be about 100, which is “far in excess” of what the Applicant
needs. There are 50 spaces provided.
8.3.2.e, Center Line Distance: The entrance to the Propeliy is within 140 feet of the
centerline of Dale Street, the closest intersection, though the requirement is 150 feet.
The current building is 85 feet to the centerline, so Mr. PelTY said the Applicant will
be reducing the nonconfolmity.
8.3.2.f, Driveways. Two wide driveways are needed, one to North Street, and one to
Dale Street, although this Section limits each propeliy to one driveway.
16.8.2, Impervious lot coverage. This Section allows for 40 percent impervious in the
Aquifer Protection District, while the Applicant proposes 68 percent, the Current
building is nonconforming at 54 percent.
Mr. Boyer asked what type of outreach has been made to the neighborhood.
Mr. Nunnery said there have been four public meetings and the Chief of Police has
handed out notices to the neighbors. Police Chief Meaney said the feedback was very
good, the neighbors have seen the plans, and he suggests shrubbery to buffer the
building from neighbors.
Mr. Almeida said there will be PVC fence all the way around the south side of
the Property and there will be a landscape tree buffer at the Property line between the
neighbors and the Proposed Building.
Chairman Nolan asked for questions from the public, there were none. No one
spoke in favor of the project or against it.

Public Safety Building – page 3 -

The members of the Board, being very familiar with the Property, elected not
to take a view of the Property. The hearing was closed at 9:40 p.m.
Based on the evidence presented at the hearing, the Board makes the following
Findings of Fact:
I. The Property is situated at 114 North Street, Medfield, Massachusetts
and is located in the residential urban (R-U) zoning district.
2. The Property is shown as Lot 84 on Assessors’ Map 49. The Propeliy is
located at the corner of North and Dale Streets and is a through lot, the
rear lot line being on Adams Street.
3. The Property cUlTently contains the Town’s public safety building
serving the police and fire departments.
4. The Proposed Building is to be located as shown on plans entitled
“Medfield Public Safety, 114 North Street, Medfield, MA 02052″ dated
May 2,2014 drawn by Dore & Whittier Architects, Inc. and PARE
Corporation (the “Plans”), consisting of six sheets.
5. The Propeliy is located in a neighborhood consisting mostly of singlefamily
With respect to the issue of height, following are the relevant provisions of the
Medfield Zoning By-Law:
6.3 Table of Height and Bulk Regulations – Maximum height in an RU district
is 35 feet.

Public Safely Building – page 4 -

6.3.1a) Notes to Table of Height and Bulk Regulations – Community facility
and public utility structures, provided that the side yards, rear yards and
setbacks required in the district for the highest permitted principal structure
shall be increased 2 feet in width for each foot by which the height of such
structure exceeds the height pennitted in the district.
6.3.1b) Notes to Table of Height and Bulk Regulations – Necessary
appurtenant structures such as church spire, belfry, cupola, dome, smokestack,
monument, derrick, conveyer, flag pole, communications tower, mast,
antenna, aerial, airplane hangar, roof tank, building service equipment, roof
structure other than a penthouse, chimney or parapet wall, or any similar
appurtenance provided that the side yards, rear yard and front setback be
increased one foot horizontally for each two feet that the height of such
structure exceeds the height permitted in the district.
The Table of Height and Bulk Regulations at Section 6.3 of the Zoning By-Law
requires a maximum height of 35 feet in an R-U zoning district. Under Section, the height of the Proposed Building would be permitted to be 41 ‘-6″. Under
Section 6.3 .1 b), the height of the appurtenant structures, including roof structures
containing building service equipment, would be permitted to be 61 ‘-0″. In reviewing
the plans, the height of the Proposed Building is 59′-7.5″ to the peak of the
ornamental clock tower. If, however, the ornamental clock tower and the roof
structures containing the building service equipment for the Proposed Building are
excluded, the height is less than the 41 ‘-6″ allowed under Section We believe
it is appropriate to apply the provisions of Section 6.3.1 b) to the ornamental clock
tower and the other roof structures, which contain building mechanical equipment and
to apply Section 6.3.1 b) to the balance of the Proposed Building. Accordingly, we do
not believe a variance is required with respect to height and that portion of the
petition is therefore denied.
As to the requested relief from Section 6.3 for the increase in lot coverage

Public Safety Building – page 5 -

from 54% to 68%, from Section 6.2.3 for construction of a driveway greater than 24
feet, from Section 8.1 for provision of 50 parking spaces instead of the required 60
spaces, from Section 8.3.2.e for construction of an entrance within 140 feet of the
centerline of an intersection, from Section 8.3.2.f to provide more than one egress to
the site with all driveways exceeding 24 feet in width and from Section 16.8.2 for
construction of40% impervious area on a nonresidential lot, we believe that the
requested variances are necessary to proceed with construction of the Proposed
Building. Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 40A, Section 10 governs the power
of this Board to issue variances. The relevant portion of the statute reads as follows:
The permit granting authority shall have the power after public hearing
for which notice has been given by publication and posting as provided
in section eleven and by mailing to all parties in interest to grant upon
appeal or upon petition with respect to particular land or structures a
variance fi’om the terms of the applicable zoning ordinance or by-law
where such permit granting authority specifically finds that owing to
circumstances relating to the soil conditions, shape or topography of
such land or structures and especially affecting such land or structures,
but not affecting generally the zoning district in which it is located, a
literal enforcement of the provisions of the ordinance or by-law would
involve substantial hardship, financial or otherwise, to the petitioner or
appellant, and that desirable relief may be granted without substantial
detriment to the public good and without nullifying or substantially
derogating from the intent or purpose of such ordinance or by-law.
Section 14.11 of the Medfield Zoning By-Law simply notes that the Board’s
power to grant variances is governed by Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 40A.
Accordingly, the Applicant cannot obtain a variance in this proceeding unless the
requirements of the statute are satisfied.
Variances are not a matter of legal right. Ferrante v. Board of Appeals of
Northampton, 345 Mass. 158 (1961) and the Supreme Judicial Court has made it plain

Public Safety Building – pge 6 -

that variances are to be granted sparingly. Planning Board of Springfield v. Board of
Appeals of Springfield, 355 Mass. 460 (1969). Thus, this Board must apply
conservatively the provisions of Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 40A,
Section 10, which sets fOlih the statutory conditions for the grant of a variance. It is
also impOliant to note that all of the conditions of the statute must be found to exist
before this Board can grant a variance. Blackmon v. Board of Appeals of Barnstable,
334 Mass. 466 (1956); Bottomley v. Board of Appeals ofYallliouth, 354 Mass. 474
In our judgment, the Applicant satisfies the threshold requirements of the
statute. The shape of the Property is irregular, with a rather wide portion along North
Street of approximately 260 feet in width, but a more narrow rear half with a width of
only about 190 feet. Furthermore, the shape of the lot is unusual due to the frontage
along three sides on Adams Street, Dale Street and NOlih Street. This unusual lot
shape appears to affect the Property in patiicular and does not affect generally the
land in the neighborhood or in the R-U zoning district in general.
A denial of the requested variance would involve substantial hardship to the
Applicant in that without the relief, the re-use of the Property for a new, updated
public safety building would be prohibited. For instance, without the extra width of
the driveways, the fire apparatus could not safely enter and exit the site. Similarly,
the two means of egress are important to allow safe and efficient circulation of the
fire and police vehicles on the site. As to parking, the site currently includes a
community basketball court and without the requested variance, the court would
likely have to be eliminated. As to the distance of the driveway openings to nearby

Public Safety Building – page 7 -

intersections, this requirement is made difficult by the frontage along three sides of
the Property and the need for two means of egress as noted above. In fact, the
driveways are being moved fUliher from the intersections, so the proposed condition
(140′) is actually less nonconforming that the existing condition (85′). Finally, as to
the impervious area, a strict enforcement of the requirement would mandate removal
of the community basketball court and would interfere with the proper circulation of
fire and police vehicles due to a narrowing of access ways and parking areas.
The desired relief may be granted without substantial detriment to the public
good and without nullifYing or substantially derogating from the intent or purpose of
the Zoning By-Law. The construction of the Proposed Building on the Property will
replace an existing public safety building on the Propeliy with a significantly
modernized and aesthetically improved structure. There was no neighborhood
opposition to the Proposed Building, further supporting our conclusion that the
purposes of the Zoning By-Law are not being violated.
Based on the foregoing, the Board grants the Application of the Town of
Medfield for variances from the following sections of the Zoning By-Law so as to
permit the construction of a new public safety building at 114 North Street, Medfield,
Massachusetts: Section 6.3 for the increase in lot coverage from 54% to 68%; Section
6.2.3 for construction of a driveway greater than 24 feet; Section 8.1 for provision of
50 parking spaces instead of the required 60 spaces; Section 8.3.2.e for construction
of an entrance within 140 feet of the centerline of an intersection; Section 8.3.2.fto

Public Safety Building – page 8 -

provide more than one egress to the site with all driveways exceeding 24 feet in
width; and Section 16.8.2 for construction of 40% impervious area on a nonresidential
lot. This relief is conditioned upon the following:
1. The Proposed Building will be developed as shown on the Plans.
2. PVC fencing will be placed along the southerly lot line and a buffer of
trees will be planted and maintained along the southerly side of the


Public Safety Building – page 9 -

Medfield.TV moving downtown

The sign in the window at the former Strata Bank building announces that site as the new future home of Medfield.TV.  There is a lot of build out to accomplish, so the move in date will not be for months.  Medfield.TV is currently located in a too small studio space that is part of the Medfield High School building.  They are physically across the small parking lot from the cafeteria door, or, from inside the building, just down the hall from Room 125.

Rockland Trust open while fix arranged

Rockland Trust is open for business while repairs are being arranged.  This update from John Naff -


Just wanted to give you an update on Rockland Trust.

After meeting with Bank Officials, Structural Engineer and the General Contractor on site Monday morning.

We came up with a plan to stabilize and secure the structure.

Inspections were performed yesterday of the temporary shoring and the Bank lobby has been reopened today.

The Bank is now in the process of coming up with a plan on restoring the damaged areas.



John G. Naff, CBO


Building Commissioner

Medfield Building Dept.

459 Main Street

Medfield Ma. 02052

(P) (508) 906-3005

(F) (508) 359-6182

Rockland Trust building damaged

Email from Mike Sullivan this morning -


Chief Meaney just called to let me know that [someone] backed [a] pickup truck into the Rockland Trust bank building around 8:30 this morning and did considerable damage to the building. No one was hurt. The building commissioner is on site and they are waiting for a structural engineer to arrive to assess whether the building is safe to open. The drive-in window is open for business. Mike

MBTA’s granite blocks are ours

The MBTA has just licensed the town to take its granite blocks to use as seats at Straw Hat Pocket Park.  Small details remain to be accomplished, like getting the MBTA a certificate of insurance.  However, we are well on our way to having historic seating with a relevant town connection to use in Straw Hat Pocket Park.

blocks photo 1