City zoning maps may be uploaded to regional website for easy access

In an age when people commonly turn to the Internet for information, the city of Milford is working on plans to contribute its zoning maps to a regional website.

At its Dec. 2 meeting, the Planning and Zoning Board (P&Z) reviewed information from Meghan McGaffin, the city's mapmaker who has the technical title of MIS analyst. McGaffin told the board the 15-town South Central Regional Council of Governments plans to create an interactive website with regional Geographic Information System (GIS) maps that will include zoning maps and parcels.

As part of that process, she and other city officials are reviewing Milford's zoning maps to “investigate the quality of the data.” In some cases, she found some minor discrepancies on the zoning maps, which she attributed to maps that were created when technology was less advanced.

“Nothing was terribly significant,” McGaffin told the board.

The concerns were typically zoning lines that were slightly off from property lines. Some properties were listed as being in two zones. As part of the adjustment, the line was moved to reflect the zone that best fit the parcel's existing use, said City Planner David B. Sulkis.

“There were instances where a property was in two zones and we kept it that way,” said Sulkis.

McGaffin added, “We are not doing a zone change. We are making map corrections.”

The board will review the maps and continue its discussion at its Dec. 16 meeting. McGaffin said she wanted the board input before submitting the data to the regional council.

“The better the data we give them, the more useful it is, said McGaffin. She said the website will be published in a few months.

In other business, the board unanimously approved with conditions the construction of two single-family houses on vacant lots, one at 874 East Broadway and the other at 876 East Broadway. Bryan Wilson, who received Coastal Area Management site plan approval, submitted both applications. The houses will be elevated to meet flood zone requirements.

Among the conditions is a request to eradicate a swath of Japanese knotweed, a non-native invasive plant species, growing on one property. The properties will also include reconstruction of sidewalks along East Broadway.