2002 Local Comprehensive Plan and Harbor Goals

At today’s Sesuit Harbor Discussion a question was raised as to how the potential creation of a Harbor Zoning District related to the adopted 2002 Dennis Local Comprehensive Plan. I referenced in that discussion the Economic Development section as one area. While I would love to have everyone to scurry to the town website to download the current plan, the following excerpts will save some time:

First in the Economic Development section:

“3.1.3 Dennis will maintain, promote, and improve economically productive recreational resources such as the beaches, golf courses, harbors and fishing areas. These areas should be maintained specifically for those uses and expanded where possible.”

The Coastal Resources section actually provides even greater guidance:

“2.2.1.5 If an existing water dependent facility is within 250 feet of the mean high water line or shoreward of the first public way, whichever is less, such use shall not be changed to a non-water dependent facility unless an overriding public benefit is provided to accommodate for the loss of the water dependent use.”

“2.2.1.6 Development or redevelopment of water dependent facilities shall provide coastal access benefits to the general public. Such Access shall minimize interference with the water dependent use.”

“2.2.3.5  New marinas of 10 or more slips, moorings, or active landward storage berths, and expansions of existing marinas by 10 or more slips, moorings or berths shall provide or contribute to the provision of adequate boat sewage pump-out facilities in each harbor and shall provide restrooms for their patrons. Such marinas shall also provide or contribute to provision of adequate collection facilities for solid waste and waste oil for their patrons.”

“2.2.3.8  Where appropriate, waterfront fueling facilities should be upgraded to ensure that best management practices are used to avoid adverse impacts to water quality.”

“6. Dennis shall designate “working waterfront” overlay zones along their shoreline to ensure the preservation and expansion of traditional maritime uses. Within these zones, boatyard preservation programs shall be implemented. All new buildings or accessory uses constructed within this zone shall directly benefit maritime-related uses.”

I am sure some will not agree, but these Local Comprehensive Plan considerations provide fairly good guidance that the working waterfronts in Dennis should be removed from the current residential zoning districts and placed into districts focused on protecting the water dependent uses present.

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