The planning and zoning commission is currently looking a number of zoning regulation changes that include revisions for historic districts and the Four Corners area.
The revisions would include new criteria for both the Four Corners area around the intersection of routes 44 and 195 and the town’s 10 historic districts.
During a public hearing May 16, Mansfield Planning Director Gregory Padick said the Four Corners zoning criteria would provide “a little more direction in a planning/design context.”
The planning and zoning commission closed its public hearing, which addressed seven sets of revisions and could approve or alter the changes next month.
He said the regulatory review committee also worked with the Four Corners sewer and water advisory committee and the regulations can be revised again when sewer and water systems are installed.
The advisory committee is currently looking at potential sewer and water systems to boost economic development around the Route 44/195 intersection.
The regulation revisions note the intersection is a “historically important crossroads area” in town, but has “deteriorated over the past few decades” because of insufficient public sewer and water systems.
The design criteria would require any developments in the Four Corners area – which is a Planned Business 3 zone – to include bikeways/walkways, street trees and other enhancements to encourage pedestrian traffic and use of public transportation.
The criteria would also promote smaller-scale building designs and require national chains to have building plans and materials “that reflect Mansfield’s architectural traditions.”
Zoning revisions pertaining to historic districts would also look to ensure new buildings and improvements “fit the individual characteristics of their particular site and neighborhood.”
Under the new criteria, setbacks and building heights for any new construction or improvements would need to be consistent with the distances and heights of the current neighborhood.
Other zoning regulation revisions would include general architectural and design standards for the town, which would also include a requirement for national chains to modify building plans to fit the town.
Padick said the stipulation currently does not exist in Mansfield’s zoning regulations.
Other regulations addressed by the revisions include notification requirements, recreational and pedestrian facility improvements, lighting requirements and setbacks for outdoor recreation facilities.
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