OXFORD — A handful of  voters approved three amendments to the town zoning ordinance within 10 minutes Thursday evening.

The amendments, to sections of the ordinance regulating off-street parking, back lots and delegated authority, largely benefit two developers pursuing projects in Oxford.

Changes to the provisions about off-street parking allow non-residential buildings with multiple uses, such as the hotel and restaurant planned on Route 26 by Casalinova Development Group, to share spaces in a parking lot.

The ordinance otherwise requires individual establishments to have a set number of spaces based on guest capacity.

The amendment allows joint facilities to reduce the size of a proposed parking lot by 30 percent, as long as the joint uses have different peak times, share a single lot, and are within 500 feet of the proposed use.

Another amendment affects the back lot right of way requirements for the town’s Mill Redevelopment Zone, which is focused on the Robinson Mill complex off King Street. The amendment changes the required width of the paved right of way to the back lot from 60 feet to 24 feet.


Town Manager Michael Chammings has previously said there is too little space within the existing buildings at the mill complex to build a new road to the previously required width, but the new requirements will allow emergency vehicles to pass into the property.

The former woolen mill and outlying buildings were purchased from the town by Mechanic Falls developer Chuck Starbird last year. Starbird has been working on redesigning the property for residential uses.

Following the vote, George Courbron, a land use consultant working for Starbird, said the developer would move forward with a standard residential subdivision plan for parts of the complex.

The third ordinance change delegates authority to the Planning Board to review and approve developments that do not meet frontage, setback or area requirements if it promotes “harmonious” and “superior” development.

Chammings previously said the change is intended for existing properties, like the Robinson Mill, and is meant to be used selectively.


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