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Jack's Diner Denied Conditional Use Permit

The Chester Development Review Board has denied a conditional use permit for the expansion of Jack's Diner, 521 Main St. Town zoning administrator Michael Normyle said the permit was denied in late November on the grounds that Dodier “missed several hearings and has not been responsive, has not provided the requested information to date.”  In late September, the DRB had asked owner Jacques Dodier to return to the DRB in a month with plans addressing elevation, parking, drainage, lighting, dumpster location and site layout, land contours and landscaping, a floor plan and a plan for a 1,000-gallon tank.

Dodier received notice of the decision in a registered letter dated Dec. 6, Normyle said. Last summer, Dodier had attempted to take advantage of the closing and reconstruction of two bridgesJacksDiner122711 to renovate his popular diner and undertake a reconstruction project. He had received a building permit from the town but was told that any additional and new uses would require him to obtain a conditional use permit, Normyle said.
      A conditional use is a purpose that is allowed under the town's zoning regulations, but specific plans must be approved by the DRB. According to town zoning law, a property zoned residential-commercial must get a conditional-use permit for a multi-family dwelling.
     Dodier was hoping to add a bar area plus two apartments.
     Neighboring residents and business owners have expressed concerns about the project: the new bar and possible expanded hours of operation; the height and style of the addition; and drainage.

Reached by phone Wednesday morning, Dec. 28, Dodier said that he will continue to build and would like to reopen. He added that he was not sure what his standing is with the town. 
Normyle said that since Dodier does have the building permit, he can continue to build. But, he added that because of the significant changes to the building, Dodier will also be unable to reopen the diner even for its original use.
     “He can finish building the building but cannot run his business because he has gone from a small diner to a much larger restaurant with a bar and apartments,” Normyle said.
     To reopen, Normyle said, Dodier will have to return to the DRB to obtain an approved conditional use permit. “The ball is in Dodier's court,” Normyle said, adding there are a couple of state permits he must get as well.
When asked whether the town will consider changing the process of allowing building permits to be issued before conditional use permits, Normyle replied, “This was a unique situation and I can assure you that the zoning administrator has learned his lesson and will not be issuing another building permit before a conditional use permit.”

Town Meeting Place, Date Change Proposed

The Chester Selectboard will be holding a meeting for the legal voters of Chester at 7 p.m. Monday, Jan. 23, 2012 at the auditorium of Green Mountain Union High School to vote on two proposals:
Article 1:
To see if the Town will vote to change the date and time of the annual Town Meeting from the Saturday before the first Tuesday in March at 10:00 a.m. to the Monday before the first Tuesday in March at 6:00 p.m.
     Article 2: To see if the Town will vote to change the location of the annual Town Meeting and any Special Town Meetings from the Green Mountain Union High School Auditorium to the Town Hall Second Floor.
     If both Article 1 and Article 2 are approved, the Town Meeting will be held on the night of Monday, March 5 on the 2nd Floor of Town Hall instead of the morning of Saturday, March 3, at the GMUHS auditorium. Election Day will remain Tuesday March 6.

Handmade Quilts for Sale at Family Center

Chester fiber artist Dorothy Riley Blomberg has donated eight colorful handmade quilts FamilyCenterQuilts
for sale to benefit the Chester Andover Family Center, 656 Depot St. The finely crafted quilts are suitable for a baby's bed or for hanging. The quilts are on sale for $20 to $50 with all proceeds going to the Family Center.  Pictured right is CAFC shop manager and board vice chair Sherry Willumitis holding one of the quilts. Below are two photos of quilt details.



There was no reference in the story as to when contractors plan to start dismantling the addition to the building.

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

As the story says, Jacques Dodier has the building permit and is allowed to keep building. And Dodier has said he intends to continue to do so. However, if he ever wishes to occupy the building, the town said he must get his conditional use permit.

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

To clarify: Dodier may continue building the Jack's Diner addition and is stating he or his general contractor will continue to do so. But he has been denied a Conditional Use Permit. Therefore, once he completes construction (ie: spending money) he will have an unusable building that can remain in place, but empty. This is either an exercise in futility or there remains a route of administration by which Jack's may still hold out hope that the final product will secure a conditional use permit. Is this about how the town sees the situation? - Thanks.

Thursday, 29 December 2011

So hoping that he never gets the conditional use permit! At this point, my family is so tired of dealing with him and the situation that we are wishing he'd use some of his dollars to buy our property so we can move far away from him and all the chaos he brings.

Wednesday, 08 February 2012
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