Court affirms Burrillville zoning decision in proposal for house on undersized lot on Stag Head Drive


PROVIDENCE – A Superior Court judge has sided with the Burrillville Zoning Board in their decision last year to deny a developer’s request to build a two-story home on an undersized lot on Stag Head Road, following the applicant’s appeal of the ruling.

Justice Jeffrey Lanphear affirmed zoners’ September decision to deny Mark Brizard’s request for dimensional variances for the 6,250-square-foot property known as 0 Stag Head Road.

According to the ruling, Brizard purchased an undeveloped lakefront property in Pascoag around two years ago. The rectangular-shaped lot is considered substandard, and Brizard’s application to build a three bedroom, 1,144-square-foot single-family house would require variances for the lot size, the frontage and the rear yard set-back.

During a hearing held last September, neighbors expressed concern about the property’s relatively small size. Acting on behalf of the applicant, Edward Pimentel from Pimentel Consulting noted that other developed properties in the area were similarly sized, stating that, “almost one-third of the entire neighborhood contains 10,000 square feet or even less land area.”

But zoners found that the design, “proved the applicant is seeking maximum financial gain as a developer,” and that Brizard, “was well aware of the minimum requirements needed to develop the property and bought the property regardless.” The board also found that the requested variances would alter the general character of the surrounding area, and that Brizard was not seeking the least relief necessary.

Brizard appealed the decision in Superior Court in October, seeking attorney’s fees and litigation costs under the Equal Access to Justice Act.

In his decision, Lanphear notes that in the hearing, Brizard provided, “scant answers,” regarding questions on his decision to purchase the property, and notes in part that Pimental did not provide evidence of, “how many lots, if any, are under 6,250 square feet and how many of those lots are improved.”

“The Consulting Report actually contains evidence that most other lots with homes are much bigger than the subject property,” Lanphear states.

“Because substantial evidence exists on the record to support the board’s resolution based on the fact that the relief was not the least relief necessary and that it would alter the general character of the surrounding area, the board’s denial of the application was appropriate,” he concludes.

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  1. I’m glad the zoning board stuck to their guns on this one, this guy is all about the money, thumbs up Burrillville

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