Applicants Propose ‘Eco-Friendly’ Home Near Round Pond; Councilors Rejected Earlier Plan For Same Site

Proposed “eco-friendly” home at 0 Stanley Drive, Haverhill.

Click image for Haverhill City Council agenda.

Seven months after a previous proposal for the property failed, new applicants seek a special permit tonight from the Haverhill City Council to build an “eco-friendly” home at 0 Stanley Drive, which belongs to the city’s Water Supply Protection Overlay District.

Councilors last December rejected Ronald Judkins’ special permit request because, they said, he proposed a duplex—rather than a single-family—and did not provide sufficient drainage. Dennis R. Suslavich and Susan M. Suslavich bought the land for $80,000 from Peter C. Lane in March. Before judging the merits of the couple’s plan, the council must first determine whether the new proposal sufficiently addresses the problems raised during Judkins’ hearing.

The dwelling in question is less than 500 feet from Round Pond, requiring special permission from the council.

Economic Development and Planning Director William Pillsbury Jr. said, in a letter to councilors, the city planning board found the new proposal differs from the previous one in the necessary ways. These differences include building only a single-family home and improving “overall control of water collection.”

As WHAV reported, Attorney Paul A. Magliocchetti during the December hearing said his clients, two abutters, were worried about contamination from construction.“When you’re constructing on a site, you’re going to have excavators, you’re going to have bulldozers, if a hydraulic line breaks, and that hydraulic fluid leaks on the ground, what’s going to happen?”

Russell S. Channen, representing Suslavich, wrote to the council, workers will be provided “oil spill kits,” including absorbent materials and buckets, for each piece of equipment. In addition, according to Engineer Joseph J. Serwatka, the project’s drainage meets the requirements of the Water Supply District. French drains on either side of the house will direct water into a “rain garden for further treatment.”

In addition to meeting legal standards for a repeat project, the building “will be environmentally friendly, totally electric and have zero emissions,” Channen said. Using heat pumps and solar, as well as expelling only clean water, he argued, “the home will set the standard for future eco-friendly homes.”

In other news, three residents over the city’s maximum age to take civil service exams—which the state requires for those seeking jobs like firefighter or police officer—will ask councilors to waive the age requirement, set at 32. Michael E. Jarvis Jr., 34, wishes to become a firefighter; Brian Dacey, 40, a police officer; and Jason L. Restituyo, 39, also a police officer.

Jarvis spent 15 years in the entertainment industry, traveling across the country doing video production and event management. He recently graduated from the Massachusetts Firefighting Academy’s Call/Volunteer Recruit Firefighter Training Class. Call and volunteer firefighters follow a different standard. He is also a call firefighter in Groveland, is expected to serve at one of Haverhill’s two call fire houses—Ayers Village or Rocks Village.

Dacey said in his application he has long dreamed of becoming an officer and has previously scored well on the civil service exam. He has worked in custodial services. Restituyo, who said he works as a federal law enforcement officer, explained he previously had to withdraw from the Lawrence police academy due to a fractured clavicle.

The Haverhill City Council meets at 7 p.m., in-person at the Theodore A. Pelosi Jr. Council Chambers, room 202, Haverhill City Hall, 4 Summer St. As a public service, 97.9 WHAV plans to carry the meeting live.

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