Originally published in Island Ad-Vantages, September 10, 2020
Deer Isle now requiring permit for new driveways
Sight lines and drainage key considerations
by Leslie Landrigan
The Deer Isle Select Board on September 4 adopted a policy requiring people to get a permit before putting in a new driveway.
New driveways must be built so vehicles on it or the road have adequate sight lines to maneuver safely in and out of traffic, the policy says.
It also requires driveways to allow the drainage of storm water using culverts, ditches or other means approved by the select board.
“The policy isn’t retroactive, but there are some people who we’re going to tell to put one [culvert] in,” Town Manager Jim Fisher said in an interview.
Without a culvert, some driveways can cause water to build up and overflow onto the road and then freeze in the winter, Fisher said. Or the water can pool and weaken the road, causing heavy trucks to go through the pavement, he said.
The select board decided on a policy rather than an ordinance because an ordinance would have required a vote by Town Meeting. The town also needs to revise its building permit forms to include the policy, Fisher said.