(CMR) An application by Arboretum Services, an affiliate of Dart, to build a helipad in North Side has been denied by the Central Planning Authority.
The company had applied to build a 2,025-square-foot helipad off Hutland Road, North Side, in an Agricultural/ Residential zone.
According to the CPA agenda for Wednesday, March 31, the helipad is proposed for private daytime use only.
The applicant's letter pointed out that the helipad location was chosen for the natural higher elevation in that area, which will improve flight path clearances. In addition, the helipad has been positioned to avoid areas
with Dry Forest growth.
However, in a letter of formal objection, objectors requested that “an informative meeting be convened to discuss with the North Side community the impact such habitual helicopter use will have on the noise levels, property value and usability as well as other disruptions this will cause to the other landowner’s rights to occupy their property within liveable noise levels.”
The letter proposes that the meeting be held in the next two weeks with landowners and government agencies.
Objectors also stated that there are Right-of-Ways (ROWs) underneath this proposed flight path that owners could not assume liability if an aircraft accident should occur.
The letter stated that “should the CPA decide to approve this application, a minimum requirement should be to
indemnify the affected landowners from any liability caused by the use of the helicopter/pad over their parcels.”
There were also concerns that the construction of the helipad would negatively impact the value of the land due to noise, vibration, and atmospheric issues/disruptions such as flying objects/dust and general damage to vegetation. Objectors stated that the right to peaceful enjoyment of property would be affected.
There were also concerns that emergency safety access from Hutland Rd. would be limited if there was an emergency such as accidents.
In addressing objectors, the Arboretum Services said the approach and departure paths are oriented east/west due to prevailing wind patterns and that the helipad will have no effect on the traditional use of adjacent land nor on the future developability of the adjacent land.
The applicant said they intended to comply with all Air Navigation orders. In addition, Arboretum said due to the large parcel size, the helipad will allow for one of the safest operation zones of any helipad on the island.
The company said firefighting equipment would also be provided at the helipad location as required by IACO regulations.
The applicant's response also stated that “the adjacent lands are currently zoned Agriculture/Residential, and it would be especially difficult to assess any potential impact to land zoned as such and with limited development opportunities. Current zoning for these lands is limited to agriculture or residential with a maximum height of 3 stories/40’. “