NEWRY — After working through remaining questions Wednesday night, the Planning Board approved a new subdivision plan for Merrill Hill Estates.

It is an 88-home subdivision initially approved in 2005 to be built in eight phases as the single-family home lots were sold. Merrill Hill is a 460-acre parcel that runs along Sunday River to the peak of Merrill Hill.

It was also approved by the Maine Department of Environmental Protection. Newry’s approved plan was revised in 2007 to include a phasing schedule documenting three phases as complete. Code Enforcement Officer Dave Bonney said another phase was also complete. The revision was approved.

However, Newry’s revised and approved subdivision application later expired, so Meador had to reapply in March for roughly 44 lots in phases four through seven.

Wednesday night’s questions pertained to road access for certain lots shown on the new plan. At the board’s April 1 meeting, Planning Board Chairman Doug Webster asked Merrill Hill Estates project engineer Joe Aloisio to return with a new map of the remaining phases.

After handing out copies to each board member, Aloisio said he noted on the plan the less-hazardous roads that lot driveways would access. Bonney asked Aloisio to indicate on the map several lot numbers and their access roads for driveways. The roads are named after minerals.

“Lot 12 will be off Garnet, but Lot 14, I honestly don’t know which will be the less-hazardous road,” Aloisio said. “It depends on where (the buyer) places their home on that lot. Lot 15 will have to come off on Garnet.”

He said Lot 29’s driveway can come off Amethyst, as can Lot 23’s, but he said that isn’t as simple as Lot 29. Aloisio said it may come off Aquamarine.

Answering a board question, Merrill Hill Estates owner Kathleen Meador said homes must meet a minimum size of 2,400 square feet. Aloisio said each lot was more than an acre.

“They’re nothing less than 2 acres big,” Meador said.

Before signing off on the project, Webster told Meador, “I really hope you really pay attention to the ordinance on pages 35 and 36, where it talks about the performance guarantee on the topsoil vegetation and the stormwater management. It is a really critical area up there.”

Meador said they’ve received good reports from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection for their work to respect that.

She said afterward that the next steps will be to continue selling lots.

In other business, the board determined that owners of the Great Brook Preserve subdivision approved in 2006 had let phases four and five lapse. Bonney said May 17, 2014, was the expiration date.

Webster said the board would have to create another Findings of Fact list like it did with the Merrill Hill project, do some homework on the matter and return to discuss what to do at the board’s next meeting on May 6.

Bonney said the project was in Phase 2, but the road was not completed to Lot 48.

“I believe the expired portion was put back into tree growth,” he said.

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