Regulatory Authority: Devens Enterprise Commission
Agency Contact: Peter C. Lowitt
Phone: 978.772.8831 ext 3313
Address: 33 Andrews Parkway, Devens, MA 01434
Massachusetts Register Number 1211
Effective Date: June 2012


1.17 Definitions

    For the purposes of 974 CMR, the following words shall have the following meanings. Unless the context clearly indicates the contrary, words used in the plural include the singular.

    Abandonment: To cease or discontinue a use or activity without intent to resume, but excluding temporary or short term interruptions to a use or activity during periods of remodeling, maintaining, or otherwise improving or rearranging a facility, or during normal periods of vacation or seasonal closure.

    Access: The means of egress and ingress for a lot or structure.

    Accessory Use: A use incidental to, meaning less than 50% (unless another percentage is specified in the By-Laws or Regulations) of the area of, and on the same lot as, a principal use.

    Act: Chapter 498 of the Acts of 1993,as it may from time to time be amended.

    Applicant: The owner of land proposed to be developed or its representative who shall have express written authority to act on behalf of the owner.

    Bikeway: Way designed to be used principally or exclusively by a bicycle or similar non-motorized vehicle. May also include designated bicycle routes within paved street shoulders abutting vehicular travelways.

    Bordering Vegetated Wetlands: As defined in the Wetlands Act (MGL C.131) and the Regulations (310 CMR 10.00).

    Buffer Zone (Wetlands): This zone is the area of land extending 100 feet radially landward from the boundary of any Resource.

    Building Official: The professionally credentialed person (under MA Building Code licensing procedures) appointed by the DEC to act as either the Building Inspector or, if qualified by the licensing authority of the Commonwealth, the Building Commissioner.

    By-Laws: The Devens By-Laws enacted November 18, 1994.

    Collector Street: A Major Collector will serve as a principal boulevard for all types of traffic and will connect to a general access gate, which in turn connects to a State Highway or arterial roadway outside Devens. A Minor Collector is a street that connects to a Major Collector, serving primarily local traffic generated by the developed sites with frontage on that collector.

    Critical Edge: The portions of a lot visible from a public road, or a Residential or Open Space & Recreation Zoning District. Critical edges require the highest level of screening.

    Dead End Streets/Cul-de-sacs: A street or portion of a street that joins another street at only one end, usually terminating in a radius of sufficient dimension to accommodate the maneuvering of fire protection vehicles.

    DEP: Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection.

    Determination of Completeness (DOC): A determination by the Director that the Submission conforms with the Plan Form and Contents and the Submission Requirements of the applicable regulations and includes a Statement of Consistency with the Reuse Plan and By-Laws.

    Developer: See Applicant.

    Development Permit: (See Unified Permits)

    Development Plan: The set of plans submitted for Unified Permitting, consisting of detailed plans, lotting or subdivision, wetlands notice of intent or any of the components delineated in these Rules and Regulations. Building plans and architectural drawings are separate from development plans.

    Devens Enterprise Commission (DEC): The Commission established by Section 9 of the Act and authorized to review and approve Submissions for Unified Permits, other approvals and certain licensing responsibilities at Devens.

    Devens Enterprise Zone (Devens): The zone created by St. 1993, c. 498 and designated for redevelopment of the Main and North Posts of the former Fort Devens.

    Director: The Land Use Administrator or any person or company that s/he designates to assist him/her.

    Drain: A channel or pipe that carries drainage water.

    Easement: A right in land acquired by public authority or other entity or person to use or control property for a utility or other purpose.

    Engineer: A person registered to practice engineering in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

    Erosion: Removal and loss of soil by wind and water due to the scarification and devegetation of the land.

    Front: Any side of a building facing a public way. There may be more than one front when a building is located on more than one public way.

    Gross Floor Area: The total floor area contained within the outermost walls, roof and lowest floor level of any building.

    Home Business:A business which is carried on entirely within a dwelling unit by the occupants and with no more than one full-time equivalent non-resident employee, which is incidental and subordinate to the dwelling use, does not alter the exterior of the property , or affect the residential character of or have unreasonable impacts on the surrounding neighborhood.

    Home Occupation:An occupation, profession, activity, or use which is carried on entirely within and only by the occupants of a dwelling unit, which is incidental and subordinate to the dwelling use, does not have customers and/or clients regularly coming to the premises, and does not alter the exterior of the property or affect the residential character of the neighborhood.

    Improvements: Public and privately-owned facilities that can exist on their own or in conjunction with utilities or services. Includes any drainage facility, street, sidewalk, tree, landscaping, parking and loading areas, or other facility and the public infrastructure. (See Public Infrastructure).

    Institutional Controls: Engineering and non-engineering measures - usually, but not always legal controls - intended to affect human activities in such a way as to prevent or reduce exposure to hazardous substances. Examples include; land and resource (e.g. water) use and deed restrictions, well-drilling prohibitions, building permits and well use advisories and deed notices.

    Lane: A street designed to access twelve or fewer residential dwellings units and accommodates traffic generated by those units only.

    Levels of Review: The level or threshold that is applicable to a specific land use action or endorsement, as prescribed within the Devens By-Laws. Level One reviews are conducted by the Director or designated and qualified staff.

    Limit of Work: Boundary beyond which no development work may take place.

    Local Street: A street that provides direct access to abutting properties only; includes cul-de-sacs and loop streets.

    Lot:A parcel of land intended to be a unit for development created by lease, conveyance, option or for transfer of ownership, whether immediate or future, and capable of being shown on a Plan that can be recorded at the Registry of Deeds.

    Lot, Corner: A parcel of land at the junction of and fronting on two (2) or more intersecting streets.

    Major Collector Street: Principal boulevard or other primary street, designed to carry the highest levels of traffic

    Mass Development: The State agency that is the designated owner, marketer, developer and overseer of the public infrastructure and the provider of municipal-type services within the Devens Enterprise Zone, under St. 1993, c. 498.

    M.G.L.: Massachusetts General Laws.

    Minor Collector Street: A secondary street often connecting to a major collector street.

    NonCritical Edges: Those lot edges which are not visible from a public way or a Residential or Open Space & Recreation Zoning District and contain no parking, loading or open storage.

    Nonsignificance: Resource Areas and Bordering Vegetated Wetlands are presumed to be significant (for example, play a role to protect) to the interests of St. 1993, c. 498, the By-Laws, and 974 CMR 3.00. Owner: The record owner, including any person, firm, corporation or any other legal entity having legal title to or sufficient proprietary interest in the land for which permitting is sought from the DEC.

    Public Infrastructure: Publicly owned facilities, utilities and services maintained and operated by .Mass Development . Includes structures necessary to provide water, gas or electric power service, lighting, wastewater disposal, stormwater runoff, and fire protection.

    Record of Decision (ROD): The written decision of the DEC or the Director regarding a permit Submission.

    Regulations: The Rules and Regulations of the Devens Enterprise Commission as amended from time to time.

    Resource Areas: Areas Subject to Protection under the wetlands provisions of the By-Laws and Regulations. Definitions of specific Resource Areas are contained in 974 CMR 3.00, M.G.L. c. 131 and 310 CMR 10.00.

    Right-of-Way: The total area of a street in public ownership; may encompass the travelway, shoulder, sidewalks, planting strips and unimproved areas beyond.

    Screening: A visually impermeable year-round barrier.

    Setback: The required minimum horizontal distance between the building line and the related front, side, or rear property line measured from the property line to the nearest edge of the structure.

    Submission: The application to the DEC for a permit.

    Subdivision: The division of a tract of land into two or more lots or other divisions for the purpose of sale or development (whether immediate or future) and including all divisions of land involving the dedication of a new street or a change in existing streets.

    Subdivision Control Law: M.G.L. c. 41, 81-K through 81-GG.

    Surveyor: A person registered to practice land surveying in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

    Towns: The Selectmen and Planning Boards of Ayer, Harvard and Shirley.

    Travelway: The portion of a right-of-way that carries vehicular traffic and is constructed and paved to accommodate such vehicular flow.

    Unified Development Permit (Unified Permit/Permit): The Unified Permit is the mechanism by which the DEC may authorize development to proceed and is a consolidation of components (site plan approval, wetlands protection, zoning variances, subdivision with a new road, and so forth).

    Utilities: Private and Municipal services, which include sanitary sewers, storm water drainage systems, water supply piping, fire alarm conduits, natural gas, electric, telephone and cable television lines and all appurtenances to these systems.

    Vote: A majority of a quorum of the DEC, unless otherwise stipulated in the By-Laws.

    Waiver: A modification to a Submission Requirement or a Design Standard.

    Way, Public: Any street that has been accepted or declared to be a public way by Mass Development or is accepted as a public way pursuant to St. 1993, c. 498 or any way established by Court Decree to be a public way by dedication, prescription or otherwise.

    Yard, Front: A space extending the full width of the lot between any building and the front lot line, and measured perpendicular to the building at the closest point to the front lot line. Such front yard is unoccupied and unobstructed from the ground upward except as may be permitted elsewhere in the By-Laws or Regulations.

    Yard, Rear: A space extending the full width of the lot between the principal building and the rear lot line, and measured perpendicular to the building at the closest point to the rear lot line. Such rear yard is unoccupied and unobstructed from the ground upward except as may be permitted elsewhere in the By-Laws or Regulations.

    Yard, Side: A space extending from the front yard to the rear yard between the principal building and the side lot line measured perpendicular from the side lot to the closest point to the rear lot line of the principal building. Such side yard is unoccupied and unobstructed from the ground upward except as may be permitted elsewhere in the By-Laws or Regulations.


      974 CMR 1.00: St. 1993, c. 498

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