Land Use and Development

Whether it be homeowners seeking to construct an addition to their home, a developer seeking to construct a residential subdivision or a company seeking to develop a commercial project, Nicholson, Sreter & Gilgun works with clients, counseling them on the regulations, by-laws and ordinances that govern their right to develop and use their real property, and representing them in working with local municipalities to secure the permits and approvals necessary for them to achieve their desired use of their real property.

While the vast majority of the Firm’s work in land use planning has involved projects in Lexington, the Firm has also represented clients involving projects located in Winchester, Woburn and Burlington. The Firm’s knowledge of State regulations under the Subdivision Control Law, the Zoning Act, and Wetlands Control Law, as well as the Town of local Planning Board Rules and Regulations, Zoning Ordinance, Wetland’s By-Law, and Historic District Regulations allow it to identify the regulations that may impact the Client’s development rights and to design a strategy for obtaining the permits and approvals the client will need in order to meet its planning objectives.

Residential Land Use Planning

The Firm has successfully represented homeowners in securing either a Special Permit or Variance under the Town of Lexington’s Zoning Ordinance to allow them to either construct an addition that encroaches into set back areas, within which construction is generally precluded under the Zoning Ordinance, as well as clients who needed to establish that the use of their property as a multifamily enjoyed the benefit of “grandfather protection” from the Zoning Ordinance because it pre-dated the change in the Zoning Ordinance that precluded such a use.

The Firm has also successfully represented both homeowners and developers in obtaining the permits necessary to allow them to subdivide their real property. In some instances the process simply required an endorsement by the Planning Board that an approval was not required in order for the owner to subdivide their land. This process is commonly referred to as “ANR Approval”, which stands for Approval Not Required. In other more involved subdivisions, the Firm has worked with clients to secure definitive subdivision approval from the Planning Board as well as approvals from the Conservation Commission to allow for their projects to proceed.

Commercial Land Use Planning

With the addition of Attorney Edmund T. Grant to the Firm in 2017, the Firm has positioned itself to represent clients seeking to develop major commercial projects in the Town of Lexington. Attorney Grant, a former member of the Town Lexington Planning Board and member of the Lexington Town Meeting, has more than twenty-five years experience representing clients before all Boards in the Town of Lexington as well as before Town Meeting. Attorney Grant has worked successfully with clients to secure the necessary permits and approvals required to allow for some of the more substantial commercial development projects in the Town of Lexington. Some of these projects not only required the typical Planning Board subdivision and site plan approvals, variances from the Board of Appeals, Conservation Commission approvals, Historic District Commission approvals but also zoning changes, which required a favorable vote from Town Meeting.