Self-storage facility, 10-lot subdivision in front of Charlestown Planning Commission

Self-storage facility, 10-lot subdivision in front of Charlestown Planning Commission

CHARLESTOWN — Proposals for a self-storage facility off Post Road and a 10-lot residential subdivision are before Charlestown’s Planning Commission. 

The self-storage project proposed by applicant C.J. Bardy and partner Erik Shafer would consist of five single-story storage buildings, a new circular access driveway off a short section of Old Post Road and limited parking.

The commission participated in a site-walk of the proposed project on Aug. 6. The site is a vacant lot owned by the Charlestown Willows motel complex, with a view of Foster Cove on Ninigret Pond. 

The Storage Place LLC intends to use the 2.7-acre site to provide 28,470 square feet of space for storage and a small office area. 

The state Coastal Resources Management Council has indicated there are no wetlands on the site. However, the application needs FEMA approval, according to a memo from Town Planner Jane Weidman, because the site is in a flood zone and would require the addition of fill in order to bring the structures to an acceptable elevation. Doing so would require amending the official FEMA flood maps, she said. 

The buildings would be barn-like structures with metal siding and roofs, according to Weidman. 

“The architect is proposing an option which shows the two larger footprint buildings in the front with a pitched but fairly shallow roof and the three buildings in back with flat roofs so that they are not visible at all from the highway,” she said.

The two front buildings, the largest, will have climate control along with exterior pedestrian doors and interior garage door access to the storage units. The remaining three structures would provide cold storage and exterior garage door access to each unit. 

Renters of the storage space must sign an agreement not to store toxic or volatile substances. The company also has an emergency spill prevention plan that it has provided to the town.

Also before the commission is a pre-application package by Ballou Builders LLC for a 10-lot residential compound off Klondike Road.

Weidman said that Justin Ballou, the owner of the 42.8-acre site, has met with town officials and is interested in a “low-impact subdivision” on the land, with a private road. Ballou bought the land in June from Raymond and Patricia Morgan, who had owned it for 50 years and operated a small farm there. 

The property contains fields, a farmhouse and outbuildings, but is mostly wooded and includes a small cemetery, about 6 acres of wetlands and many stone walls. It abuts Burlingame State Park to the east.

“At some point in its distant past I’m sure this intriguing property was considerably more cleared than it is today,” Weidman said.


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