The size of the proposed homes on the two parcels will change from a maximum limit of three bedrooms, up to 1,100 square feet, to allow for more flexibility. The homes can now be constructed containing two to four bedrooms, ranging from 625 square feet to 1,200 square feet plus a 300 square foot garage.
The changes prompted an amendment to the original Act 250 permit on Jennifer Lane because it is a material change to the existing permit, said Planning Direector and Zoning Administrator Lee Krohn.
"A material change generally under the law is one that creates some kind of substantial difference from an original proposal and approval or that might create new or different impacts than were originally reviewed, contemplated and approved," he said.
The amendment of the Act 250 permit was filed by the Bennington Area Habitat for Humanity and Gerald and Linell Pike on May 3. Under Act 250, projects are reviewed based on 10 criteria. Before granting a permit the District Environmental Commission must decide that the project meets all criteria.
Regulatory review for the size of homes is usually not a part of a review process, however it is understood
"Some of the neighbors raised an issue that these were now bigger homes and that somehow they were going to create bigger impacts," said Krohn. "We have never found any of these changes in the local permit to be of any substance. These are land use permits, they run with the land. As long as you abide by the rights and restrictions its simply not a legal issue."