Planning Board shares update on Brandt Point Village

Dec 17, 2018

MATTAPOISETT — At the Dec. 17 Planning Board meeting, members took stock of the progress on the controversial Brandt Point Village housing project, noting that there seems to have been some progress, but that they will likely need to continue to monitor the construction.

Brandt Point Village is a multi-phase housing development project that began construction in 2006, but suffered significant delays and stirred numerous resident complaints about quality of life during construction. The development was allowed to have 90 bedrooms. Seven homes were completed in the first phase of the construction project, and another three are currently under construction in the second phase of the project. 

The project switched from the original contractor to the current contractor,  Armand Cortelesso, in 2016, and is now in the second phase of the project. Still, in Oct. 2018 the planning board demanded that the developers return a $1.5 million surety for failing to meet the project’s timetable.

Though no one appeared at the Monday meeting to represent the project, the Planning Board had received a report detailing some of the progress at the development. An abutter noted that the Cortalesso has added topcoat, done some landscaping, and installing sticks marking property lines.

“We definitely lit a fire under them,” said Chair Thomas Tucker, “We just have to keep the fire going.”

Janice Robbins started discussion by asking if the Board knew the status of the projects listed as uncompleted in the report.

“I’m not sure about that,” replied Mary Crain, “I know the fixes to the concrete of the kiosk and the crosswalk ramp were done quite recently, but as far as these other items I’m not sure.”

Arlene Fidalgo noted that this report on the project’s progress was similar to other reports the board had seen, other than the modifications.

Still, the Board is aware that they will need to keep a close eye on what the developer is building to make sure he stays within his contract.

“We have to keep up on the bedroom counts,” said Tucker, “because they are limited to the number of bedrooms, not the amount of houses, and some of the structures that they started in Phase II are pretty large.”

The concern comes after a 2014 request from the developer to increase the number of bedrooms in houses from 90 using space that was originally allotted for a den or an office. The Planning Board denied this request, amid concerns that it would overburden the sewer system. 

Nathan Ketchum mentioned a spreadsheet that he was using to keep track of the number of bedrooms. “I have everything that is in the Phase I portion,” he said. 

In contrast to other meetings on the subject, where numerous residents showed up to complain, only one abutter was there, and only had one complaint to bring to the board’s attention.

“The catchbasin or the manhole cover in my property is starting to sink,” said Derek Tavares of Nantucket Drive, adding that “That was something that they were supposed to tear up and repair”

Tucker noted that Tavares’ complaint didn’t seem to have made it into the report, and promised that he would pass it on.