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Board of Appeals



Property Owners: Judith A. Lynch        and Mark E. Lynch
206 Linden Ponds Way 10 Elmore Road
Hingham, MA 02043   Scituate, MA 02066

Applicant: Mark E. Lynch
10 Elmore Road
Hingham, MA

Property: 10 Elmore Road, Hingham, MA 02043

Title Reference: Certificate of Title No. 119820 issued by the Plymouth County Registry District of the Land Court

Plan References: "Foundation As-Built Plan," prepared by Cavanaro Consulting, 687 Main Street, Norwell, MA, dated January 18, 2017


This matter came before the Zoning Board of Appeals on the application of Mark Lynch (the "Applicant" and “Co-owner”) for a Variance from § IV-A of the Zoning By-Law and such other relief as necessary to install mechanized or motorized equipment resulting in a 17.5’ side yard setback where 20’ is required at 10 Elmore Road in Residence District C.

A public hearing was duly noticed and held on June 18, 2019 at Hingham Town Hall, 210 Central Street. The Board panel consisted of its regular members Robyn S. Maguire, Chairman, and Paul K. Healey, and associate member Mario Romania, Jr. The Applicant appeared to represent the application to the Board. At the conclusion of the hearing, the Board voted unanimously to grant the requested relief subject to conditions contained herein.

Throughout its deliberations, the Board has been mindful of the statements of the Applicant and the comments of the general public, all as made or received at the public hearing.


The subject property consists of approximately 4,865 SF improved by a single-family dwelling and detached accessory structure. The lot is narrow in shape, with just 50' of frontage on Elmore Road. The property is also limited by a high water table and its location within 100' of a wetland resource.

The Applicant requests relief to locate an A/C unit to the rear of the dwelling, between an existing detached accessory structure and a deck. Since Residence District C requires 20’ side yard setbacks, there is a limited 10’-wide area in which to locate mechanical equipment by right. Relief would allow the A/C unit to be installed 17.5’ from the southerly side property line. The Applicant represents that the chosen location should minimize visual and auditory impacts associated with the mechanical equipment.

The present application is made because the Applicant failed to act prior to expiration of relief granted by the Board in May 2017 for an identical request. During the hearing on the prior application, an abutter to the south of the Property expressed concern about the potential impacts of the proposed project. Board members discussed alternative locations with the Applicant, finding that the site was significantly limited by its narrow width, proximity to a wetland resource area, and existing improvements. The Board then discussed ways in which the Applicant could mitigate any potential adverse impacts associated with the proposed project, opting to impose a condition requiring screening to enclose the proposed unit on all four sides.

During the hearing, the Applicant represented the he was unable to comply with the screening condition since there is insufficient space between the existing deck/stairs and the unit to both install an enclosure and allow for required air circulation to the unit. The Board acknowledged that moving the unit in order to provide sufficient area for an enclosure on two side would only serve to intensify the incursion. The Board agreed that screening on the south side of the unit would be unnecessary given that the location exceeds the south side yard setback.


Based upon the information submitted and received at the hearing, and the deliberations and discussions of the Board members during the meeting, the Board has determined that:
1. There are circumstances relating to soil conditions, shape or topography especially affecting the land but not affecting generally the zoning district. The lot is narrow in shape, with just 50' of frontage on Elmore Road. The property is also limited by a high water table and its location within 100' of a wetland resource area. These conditions in combination with the placement of the existing structures on the lot, are not generally found in the zoning district.

2. The literal enforcement of the Bylaws would involve substantial hardship financial or otherwise. Air conditioning is a common improvement in the neighborhood and residential districts. Absent relief, the Applicant would not have the same enjoyment of the property as others in the district. A grant of a Variance in this instance will allow for a reasonable placement that is consistent with a single family use in the Residence C Zoning District.

3. A variance may be granted without substantial detriment to the public good. The proposed location between a detached accessory structure and deck will minimize any potential visual or auditory impacts associated with the mechanical equipment. There will be no adverse effects on the neighborhood and there will be no harm to the public good.

4. A variance may be granted without nullifying or substantially derogating from the intent or purposes of the Bylaw. The proposed incursion is modest in size and the chosen location, combined with screening required as a condition of this Decision, will minimize potential visual or auditory impacts on abutters. The granting of a dimensional variance in this instance is consistent with the purposes of the By-Law.


Upon a motion made by Mario Romania, Jr. and seconded by Paul K. Healey, the Board voted unanimously to GRANT the requested Variance from § IV-A of the By-Law to install mechanized or motorized equipment resulting in a 17.5’ side yard setback where 20’ is required at 10 Elmore Road in Residence District C, subject to the following conditions:
1. The rights authorized by this Variance shall expire one year from the date this Decision is filed with the Town Clerk, unless exercised or extended in accordance with the terms of M.G.L. c. 40A, § 10.

2. The Applicant shall install the mechanical equipment in a manner consistent with the approved plans and the representations made during the hearing before the Board such that screening will enclose the unit on the two (2) sides not directly adjacent to the stairs and deck and where the height is equal to the deck and at a minimum 6” higher than the unit. The screening details, which may consist of fencing or vegetative materials, shall be filed with the Zoning Administrator for review and approval prior to issuance of any permit from the Building Department for the AC installation.

The zoning relief granted herein shall not become effective until (i) the Town Clerk has certified on a copy of this Decision that twenty (20) days have elapsed after the decision has been filed in the office of the Town Clerk and no appeal has been filed or that if such an appeal has been filed, that it has been dismissed or denied, and that (ii) a copy thereof has been duly recorded in the Plymouth County Registry of Deeds and indexed in the grantor index under the name of the owner of record or is recorded and noted on the owner’s certificate of title.

For the Zoning Board of Appeals,

Robyn S. Maguire
July 15, 2019