Trying to Minimize the Paper

Design Review Board Makes Quick Work of Three Applications and Thinks Toward the Environment


APR 20, 2023

BAR HARBOR—The Bar Harbor Design Review Board met April 13. Board Chair Barbara Sassaman, Vice Chair Pancho Cole, Kate Macko, and Mike Rogers attended. Andrea Lepcio was unable to attend. The seven-member board has two vacancies. The meeting itself had a hitch in its viewing and recording on Town Hall Streams and was recently uploaded thanks to the efforts of Bar Harbor’s Technology Systems Administrator Steve Cornell. Discussions of the three applications at the beginning of the meeting took about three minutes. The rest of the time was spent discussing Appendix A, the list of historic properties that must be updated and approved by voters each year.

Staff Planner Cali Martinez and the board spoke about potential changes to Appendix A, which is redone every June.

Sample draft page of Appendix A prepared by Martinez for the board. All in yellow are changes.

The last column specifies the significance of each property. Sassaman suggested getting rid of the word “property” in “National Register property.” That change wasn’t agreed on.

All the property owners will be invited to a workshop with the board members to discuss potential changes to the appendix. Planning Director Michele Gagnon suggested giving property owners a couple of options for dates and methods (zoom, in-person) to meet. She also asked that the board learn about each property for when they meet with the property owners.


The Design Review Board hoped to decrease the amount of paper copies and instead go digital with the packet of information that’s dispersed at each meeting. The board members present agreed that they’d like to minimize the number of paper copies that are needed to just one paper copy at the meeting. And the department will also look at how many copies the applicant is asked to bring to meetings. Packets are often over 50 pages long. This change might require a change in the town code.


The restaurant at 321 Main Street requested a certificate of appropriateness for changes to its exterior appearance. They had built a permitted patio but failed to submit the modified plans to include the pergola on the patio. The board unanimously approved.


The changes to the exterior of the building at 41 Rodick Street were on the approved list of paint colors and the applicants did not need to receive a certificate of appropriateness from the board. They did not attend the meeting because it wasn’t necessary.


Mandy Fountaine and Matt Leddy requested changes or installation to their sign or awning at 8 Cottage Street. The sign meets height requirements. It is mounted with a metal bracket. There are complete hooks so that the sign can’t blow off. Fountaine and Leddy said they’ll be removing the sign in the winter.

New sign. Per application


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