Hanover Responds to College’s Appeal Of Athletic Facility Permit Denial

Published: 4/26/2017 1:47:27 PM
Modified: 4/26/2017 1:49:32 PM

Hanover — The town of Hanover earlier this month denied claims by Dartmouth College that the municipal Planning Board’s denial of a permit for a proposed 70,000-square-foot athletic facility was based on faulty legal logic.

Dartmouth in January appealed the town board’s decision from December not to grant permission to build a roughly $17.5 million facility off South Park Street that would allow the school’s athletes to practice in inclement weather.

Lawyers for the college said board members in denying the permit had improperly cited the town master plan, a periodically updated document that details the community’s vision for future development but does not have innate regulatory power.

Hanover denied that charge in its response, dated April 6.

“The board did not rely on the master plan in denying the application,” said the response from Laura Spector-Morgan, Hanover’s attorney. “The board, which was entitled to consider the proposal’s conformance with the master plan pursuant to the site plan review regulations, found that the proposed facility did not conform with the master plan.”

Board members, citing site plan review regulations, also said the project would “negatively impact the abutters, neighborhood and others, town services and fiscal health” and “does not relate to the harmonious and aesthetically pleasing development of the town and its environs.”

Hanover’s response, which went line-by-line through Dartmouth’s appeal admitting or denying its assertions, asked that the case be dismissed and the Hanover Planning Board’s ruling be affirmed. Hanover also asked for an extension until May to submit evidence.

— Staff report

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