Home sales and property development in and around Cederville, MA (Plymouth) has been relatively straightforward with residents generally being supportive of new development and land use. This because the use makes sense given the location of the land and environmental impact consistent with good planning and engineering.

Recently our neighborhood built around Triangle Pond, off Little Herring Pond Rd. and adjacent to Little Herring Pond has been put on notice of a new development proposed by the current owner/developer of The Ponds of Plymouth, SP Realty Investment Co. LLC, a Rhode Island company.

    Plymouth open space Triangle Pond

There are actually five (5) ponds within a quarter mile radius including Little Herring Pond, Triangle Pond, Pickerel Pond, Island Pond and the very large, Great Herring Pond just to the south. Most of these are known as “Kettle Ponds,” typically ponds that lack a surface water inlet or outlet. Instead, the sandy sides of these ponds allow a steady inflow and outflow of water to and from the adjacent aquifer. The pond surfaces generally fluctuate up and down in response to the seasonal rise and fall of the water table, giving us a “window” into the aquifer.

Each year herring make their way from the ocean into Great Herring Pond swimming up stream to Little Herring Pond to spawn and hatch where the herring then make their way back to the ocean. It’s one of the few truly active herring runs in the northeast. The smaller ponds are also home to Box Turtles and a couple of tree varieties close to being endangered.

    Triangle Pond development

The proposed development is for 10 homes within a 15-acre section on the east side of Triangle Pond and west side of Little Herring Pond. This land is a small isthmus or strip of narrow land between the two ponds with barely enough space for walking trails and bicycles. From these existing trails it is only about 200-500 feet to the water. This pond is roughly 20-25 acres in size and provides drinking water via wells to some 15 homes surrounding the crystal clear pond stocked with fish and is a wonderful pond in which to swim.

In researching the proposed permit to build we have found information to call into question the overall feasibility of this proposal and certainly the manner in which the town of Plymouth Planning Board has handled it. The Herring Pond Watershed Association (HPWA) has decided to contest this permit request, has hired an attorney and recently filed a Freedom Of Information Act request to obtain all documents and meeting minutes on this permit filing. Here are some facts:

    1) SP Realty Investment Co LLC purchased the 15 acres for a mere $232,000 from the town.

    2) The town declared the acreage “Open Space In Perpetuity” following the final completion of The Ponds Of Plymouth development. The space is/was not to be used for additional development of homes.

    3) The acreage was recently removed from open space in a closed-door meeting of the Planning Board.This was followed by a permit filing to build the new development by SP Realty Investment Co LLC.

    4) The 10 homes will result in 10 new septic systems, leaching fields and run off from asphalt roads and driveways directly impacting two small ponds over time, notwithstanding the current engineering plans to capture this.

    5) The proposed homes will impact the value of current homes, as they will be on smaller lots, have less sq.ft and inferior to existing homes. The neighborhood has enough homes.

    6) Current regulations prohibit any motors on boats unless electric. Will this be impacted?
    Current regulations prohibit any clearing or cutting of trees within 100 ft. of the shoreline. Will this be impacted?

If you live in the area, want to help or need more information let me know. Some development is just not right.

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