Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Woonsocket North Smithfield 10-11-2018

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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NO. SMITHFIELD BLACKSTONE WOONSOCKET | VALLEY BREEZE | OCT. 11-17, 2018 NO. SMITHFIELD / WOONSOCKET 3 No. Smithfield Town Council to consider new comprehensive plan Branch Village, Whortleberry Hill targeted for commercial development NORTH SMITHFIELD – The Town Council will take up the town's new comprehensive plan next week, considering a draft of the document mapping the town's development and land use goals for the next 10 to 20 years for a possible vote at Monday's meeting. It's been 12 years since North Smithfield adopted its current com- prehensive plan in 2006, and much has changed since then. Housing options and commercial develop- ment have expanded and officials embarked on new projects to repair or replace aging town buildings and infrastructure. Land use continues to be a topic of debate among residents as new housing developments and renewable energy projects come for- ward for consideration. The new comprehensive plan, drafted by Planning Board mem- bers along with Town Planner Tom Kravitz and Assistant Planner Roberta Moneghan over several years, provides a guide for approach- ing future growth along with a set of listed goals and proposed zoning changes. One of these goals is the expan- sion of the town's commercial tax base, primarily through expansion of business development along the Route 146 corridor. The plan targets Branch Village and Route 146 near the Sayles Hill Road intersection for additional business growth, propos- ing the expansion of sewer lines down Route146 to help these goals. The plan also calls for consideration of development possibilities if the congestion-causing Sayles Hill Road light were eliminated, a subject town officials have broached with the Rhode Island Department of Transportation. For Branch Village, town officials have another route-altering expan- sion in mind. According to Town Administrator Gary Ezovski, the intersection of Pound Hill Road and Route 146 is currently undergoing a traffic study to see if it would be a suitable access point for a "new front door" to the business park off Great Road in the Branch Village area. If constructed, Ezovski believes the road could open up more land for development without creating additional com- mercial traffic on Route146A. "I believe it's the only reason that that land hasn't been developed yet," he said. "We have water, sewer, gas, power, web access and all reasonable quantities and volumes to be able to support many, many business needs." Another area targeted for long- term commercial development is Whortleberry Hill, an area between Iron Mine Hill Road and Route 146 that is currently under consideration for a 40-megawatt solar farm. A proposed land use map targets the area for "professional services," a category that could include a range of business interests, potentially after the solar farm, proposed by Green Development, is decommissioned after a 25-year lifespan. In addition to targeting areas for commercial development, the plan also identifies parcels targeted for open space, rural residential neigh- borhoods and farmland, primarily on the western side of town where many of these spaces already exist. The plan also calls for the creation of additional affordable housing and promotion of medium to high density housing on the eastern side of town where sewer and water lines already exist so as to minimize the need for further expansion of infra- structure. According to Ezovski, the plan provides a set of priorities that attempt to balance maintenance of the town's rural character with the changing needs of its population. While the plan calls for an expansion of recreational facilities and services and takes into account potential school enrollment changes, Ezovski pointed out these services have costs that must be offset by tax revenue. "There should be widespread inter- est in this if we're interested in some of these long-term priorities, and for me, a big part of that is the financial picture," he said. While approval of the plan does not automatically enact any zoning changes or policy initiatives, the doc- ument is intended to serve as a guide for the next decade or two, the mini- mum amount of time before state law requires the town to approve a new comprehensive plan. Residents can view the plan draft in its entirety, along with maps of proposed land use and zoning chang- es, on the Planning Department page of the town website. Public comment will be taken during the meeting next Monday, Oct. 15, at 6:45 p.m. at North Smithfield Middle School, 1850 Providence Pike. By LAUREN CLEM Valley Breeze Staff Writer lauren@valleybreeze.com EZOVSKI Learn about special effects makeup at the library WOONSOCKET – The Woonsocket Harris Public Library, 303 Clinton St., will hold a class on special effects makeup on Wednesday, Oct. 17, from 3 to 4 p.m. The program is open to students in middle and high school. Learn how to make great makeup for the perfect Halloween costume. For more information, call 401-769- 9044 or visit https://woonsocketli- brary.org . ShelterWalk for homeless set for Saturday WOONSOCKET – The 30th Annual ShelterWalk to support the Woonsocket Homeless Shelter will take place this Saturday, Oct. 13. Registration opens at 9 a.m., and the walk begins at 10. The event will step off from River Island Park, 100 Bernon St. ShelterWalk supports the Woonsocket shelter and homelessness prevention programs. More than 180 individuals were served in the shelter last year, over half of them children. In addition to emergency housing, families are linked to other services including employment and training, financial literacy and basic needs sup- ports to help them transition to safe, permanent housing. More than 250 participants are expected to take part in the 3-mile walk in Woonsocket, including teams from local schools, faith-based groups and organizations. For more information call 401-235-7000 or visit www. CommunityCareRI.org. Day of Prayer event this Saturday in Woonsocket WOONSOCKET – A Woonsocket Day of Prayer event will be held Saturday, Oct. 13, at 1 p.m., in River Island Park, Bernon Street. For more information, visit the Woonsocket Day of Prayer Facebook page. IN BRIEF S STANLEY TREE Since 1986 • Professional High Quality Service At Reasonable Rates • Licensed Arborists • Serving RI & Nearby Mass. • Our Team Of Professionals Is Fully Equipped To Handle Your Job In A Safe Efficient Manner N. Smithfield, Office Hours: Mon.-Fri. 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Affordable Solutions for Your Tree Problems Fully Insured Free Estimates 401-765-4677 www.StanleyTree.com Tree Removal Pruning Cabling Brush Mowing Stump Grinding Crane Service TREE REMOVAL EXPERTS Plant Health Care Spraying/Fertilization GREAT VALUE QUALITY SERVICE 36 BLACKSTONE STREET WOONSOCKET 401-766-3270 WWW.TERRYAUTOLTD.COM Gil & Meika 2011 NISSAN FRONTIER Automatic, 4x4, Extra Cab ........$11,999 2011 HYUNDAI SONATA HYBRID LOADED! 70K miles .................................$9,495 2010 FORD EDGE AWD, Loaded, 90K ....................................$8,495 2008 TOYOTA RAV 4 80K ....................................................................$8,495

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