Lyme now has a choice

At their last meeting, the Planning Board continued to add restrictions to the draft Senior Housing amendment. The newest addition – making covered parking a legal requirement for senior housing – removes another bit of flexibility from a developer who might consider such a development.

Fortunately, Lyme now has an alternative. Lyme residents Rusty Keith and Peter Beaupre drafted language and collected sufficient signatures for an amendment to the ordinance that would permit senior and other types of housing. (I support this amendment.)

Briefly, the amendment would permit Planned Developments on any property that abuts Route 10 in the Rural District. “Planned Developments” are already defined in the Ordinance as “a mix of residential and institutional or business uses” on a single lot, as long as 15% of the floor area is reserved for residential use.

The important changes are that Planned Developments could be 100% residential use and that they would be permitted in a new part of town – along Route 10. The other changes take away the strict requirement for easements and remove restrictions on the types of business that would be allowed. This opens the way for many kinds of housing (including senior and workforce housing) as well as a variety of small business options.

As preparation for the vote at Town Meeting next March, the Planning Board has scheduled a public hearing for both the Senior Housing amendment and this petitioned Planned Development amendment on Thursday, 9 January 2020 at 7:00pm.

Feel free to share this post on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, or email. Any opinions expressed here are solely my own, and not those of any public body, such as the Lyme Planning Board, Budget Committee, or Trustees of the Trust Funds where I volunteer. I would be very interested to hear your thoughts – you can reach me at

Planned Development Amendment

(Can’t read the PDF above? Download it at

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