For over a year, construction has been halted on the Hillspoint Road residence meant to replace the old Positano restaurant. Multiple zoning permit violations led to the stop-work order.
The half-finished structure has become a neighborhood eyesore. Blue sheets wrap the exterior. A construction fence keeps out intruders. Weeds grow in the driveway and sand.
The homeowner hopes to move forward with new plans. Nearly 20 Hillspoint Road residents joined a phone call Wednesday night with the architect.
They were not pleased.
Representative Town Meeting Andrew Colabella says there was “very robust discussion,” with opposition from neighbors.
Michael Calise adds, “All of the neighbors were against the proposal. Some even said they were offended and appalled by the proposed design.”
The plan — presented by Vita Design Group — includes a new rooftop, and elevator with cupola. It adds bulk, makes the entire roof line higher, and blocks views from Compo Hill even more than before.
Hal Kravitz — who owns the Joey’s by the Shore property, diagonally across the street — says that cupolas are allowed only for light. They are not supposed to be functional.
The height would be 47 feet — even higher than the original plan. Mechanicals would be relocated to the roof deck.
Calise says that for him, the most significant change from the first plan was the conversion to a gambrel roof. It reaches down to the top of the first floor, with the lower section parallel to the side walls of the second floor.
“Under the current method of measuring gambrel roofs, they were able to lower the midpoint of the roof so significantly that they actually raised the ridge of the roof 10 feet,” Calise says.
“This proposed design and the resultant ridge height was above the existing elevator shaft, and required a higher chimney to comply with building codes.
“When I pointed out that this actually created a third floor and a higher building, they argued that it did not because the roof design had openings which meant it was simply a cover for an outdoor deck, and therefore not a roof.”
This is not the first new construction in that area of Hillspoint Road. Recent new homes, however, have been low-slung, in keeping with the scale of the land.
Colabella says of 233 Hillspoint, “What is there now is a bullet wound. What is proposed, dumps salt into the wound.”
The new proposal is subject to approval by the Zoning Board of Appeals.’