Subdivision, open space proposed for Shuttle Meadow Road in Southington

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SOUTHINGTON — Impact on wildlife and traffic were among the concerns raised this week by Shuttle Meadow Road residents about a proposed six-lot subdivision.

Carrier Group Inc. is looking to build homes at 927, 935 and 951 Shuttle Meadow Road. They are seeking permission from the Planning and Zoning Commission for an open space subdivision, which allows greater density in exchange for preserved land.

Brian Panico, an engineer representing the home builders, said the land totals about 10 acres, nearly an acre and a half of which will be preserved through conservation easements or a homeowner’s association. The property isn’t next to any town-owned open space.

“There is not any open space around this so it’ll be owned by a homeowners association as I’m sure the town wouldn't want to take it over,” he said.

The plan calls for maintaining tree lines which Panico said will help shelter wildlife on the property.

The open space subdivision proposal allows Carrier Group to build six homes. A traditional subdivision in the area would only yield five homes. While lots in the area normally must be 80,000 square feet, the open space subdivision only requires 40,000 square feet. 

Questions from planners

Peter Santago, a commission member, questioned the gain in cutting lot size in half while preserving 1.37 acres of open space. Some of the open space is wetlands, which can’t be developed.

“We’re getting only an acre plus and we’re reducing the size of the lots in half,” Santago said during Tuesday’s meeting. “The trade-off doesn’t really make sense to me for one house.”

Christina Volpe, a commission member, said she’d like to see more details of the plan as well an idea of the finished product.

Panico said the home builders were planning high-end homes.

“Carrier does great work. It builds great homes,” he said.

The company plans to demolish two houses that are on the land owned by the Desell family.

The commission took no action on the plan and will continue to consider it at a future meeting.

Concerns from residents

The subdivision if approved would have public water and private sewer systems. Panico said the soil is excellent for absorbing water.

James Harvey, a Shuttle Meadow Road resident, had concerns about a development adjacent to his property and the impact more houses might have on water quality.

Harvey was also concerned about wildlife in the area, including several species of turtles.

Harvey also questioned a development purporting to preserve open space while increasing density.

“It’s using an open space concept to develop, to increase the density, that’s what I’m concerned with,” he said.

Carrier Group is also seeking Conservation Commission approval for the plan since it’s near wetlands.

jbuchanan@record-journal.com203-317-2230Twitter: @JBuchananRJ


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