WATERVILLE — The Planning Board on Tuesday voted to recommend to the City Council that 4.86 acres on Webb Road be rezoned to allow for storage units to be built there.

The storage units being developed by Dennis Brockway would be close to the Oakland town line on Webb Road, adjacent to a former landfill site. The development requires the council to approve rezoning the property from rural residential to one allowing some commercial development. The Planning Board may recommend rezoning but has no authority to make the change — only the council can do that.

The entire property is about 33 acres and only about 15% of the land would be used for the storage units, according to Jeffrey Allen of A.E. Hodsdon Consulting Engineers, which is working on the project.

As part of the rezoning effort, the board needed to send a memo to the council along with an explanation of the board’s reasons for its recommendation, according to City Planner Ann Beverage, who drew up a draft ordinance. Board member Uria Pelletier noted, and others agreed, that the property is not highly valued because it’s so close to a landfill.

“It seems like a good use for that property,” board Chairwoman Samantha Burdick said.

Members also determined the proposed use of the property would be consistent with several goals in the city’s comprehensive plan and voted to approve a motion by Burdick, seconded by Tom DePre, to accept the draft ordinance and send it to the council for the zoning change.


Members also voted 6-0 to approve a final plan by Waterville Public Schools to build a 10,000-square-foot storage building at Waterville Junior High School to be used for equipment, furniture and other items removed from district classrooms to allow for social distancing during the coronavirus pandemic. Officials say that eventually the building may be used to house school buses.

Board member David Johnson asked Allen, who also represented the school project, about whether water and sewer hookups will be installed if it becomes a bus garage. Allen said that if at some point it does become a garage, a room with water and sewer hookup would be added.

“Right now, though, it’s not going to have any water or sewer service, or any need for it, in the building,” Allen said.

The board also had a lengthy discussion about whether the city should adopt an “adaptive reuse ordinance” to help protect historic sites and what such an ordinance would include.

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