About the Zoning Board of Appeals

The Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) as a quasi-judicial body charged under the provisions of Chapter 40A of the Massachusetts General Laws. The ZBA is the Special Permit Granting Authority for:

  • Variances
  • Special Permit Applications, including Special Permits with Design Review and Special Permits with Site Plan Review
  • Appeals by aggrieved parties of administrative or enforcement decisions
  • Comprehensive Permit Petitions (MGL Chapter 40B)
  • Members

  • Reports & Decisions

  • Orsola Susan Fontano, Chair

Orsola Susan Fontano is currently the chair of the Zoning Board of Appeals as Chair. She also volunteers with the Elections Department, the Council of Aging, and the Art's Council. Some of her past affiliations include the Historic Preservation Commission, member of the award-winning Somerville All-American City delegation, and founding president of East Somerville Main Streets. She is self-employed, operating Up, Up & Away balloons since 1981 and managing her sister business Nefertiti Hair Salon since 1977.

  • Richard Rossetti, Clerk

Richard Rossetti has served on the Zoning Board of Appeals for over 14 years and is the Distribution Manager for the Spaulding Brick Company. He has also held a position with the Somerville Dreams For Youth Foundation and served 8 years on the Somerville High School Scholarship Foundation. He is a two-time member of the award-winning Somerville All-American City delegation.

  • Danielle Evans

Danielle Evans holds a master’s degree in Urban and Environmental policy and planning from Tufts University and is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners and has served on the ZBA since 2008. She has worked as a planner in several municipalities in Massachusetts and currently manages the Community Preservation Act program for the City of Medford.

  • Elaine Severino

Elaine Severino is a former educator and small business owner. She spent 5 years serving on the Zoning Task Force Committee that rewrote the previous Somerville Zoning laws and has served in the Zoning Board of Appeals for over 15 years. She is also a member of the Somerville Garden Club and dedicated to helping create better green spaces in Somerville.

  • Josh Safdie

Josh Safdie, AIA, NCARB, is a Principal at KMA, an architecture and consulting practice. He serves as the co-chair of the Access Committee for the Boston Society of Architects and has received awards from the Massachusetts Architectural Access Board and the Boston Preservation Alliance for projects merging preservation and accessibility.   He is also an Associate Professor at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design and a contributor to Architecture Boston magazine.

  • Anne Brockelman, Alternate

Anne Brockelman, AIA, LEED AP BD+C is an architect with 17 years of experience and the Associate Principal at Perry Dean Rogers Partners Architects and Director of Sustainable Design. She graduated from Wesleyan University with a B.A. in Art History and Studio Art and a Master of Architecture from Harvard University's Graduate School of Design. She also has served as adjunct faculty at the Boston Architectural College since 2001 and received the Certificate in Design Education in 2006.

Reports and Decisions

PLEASE NOTE: Applications made before April 15, 2011 are not included in this listing and can be found by clicking here.

Street Number Case Number First Hearing Date Decisions Other Reports Updated datesort ascending
Revolution Drive (XMBLY Block 23) 290 PB2018-12 Aug 23, 2018 PDF icon cover letter
PDF icon executive summary
PDF icon application & waivers
PDF icon site photos
PDF icon zoning compliance
PDF icon transportation narrative
PDF icon utility analysis
PDF icon stormwater memo
PDF icon landscape plans
PDF icon open space
PDF icon LEED narrative
PDF icon sustainability questionnaire
PDF icon mobility management plan
PDF icon transportation access plan
PDF icon articles of incorporation
PDF icon building diagrams
PDF icon shadow studies
PDF icon architectural drawings
PDF icon architectural renderings
PDF icon civil plans
07/10/2018 - 2:03pm
Cameron Avenue 45 ZBA 2016-81 Jul 14, 2016 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Cameron Ave 45 -Plan Set.pdf
PDF icon Cameron Ave 45 - Final Plan Set.pdf
PDF icon Cameron Ave 45 - Staff Report.pdf 07/10/2018 - 11:43am
Adrian St 20 ZBA 2018-53 Jun 20, 2018 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plan Set for 6-20-18 PDF icon Staff Report 07/03/2018 - 2:51pm
Newbury 22 ZBA 2018-67 Jun 20, 2018 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plan Set
PDF icon Plot Plan
PDF icon Staff Report 07/03/2018 - 2:51pm
Holland St 134 ZBA 2018-48 Jun 20, 2018 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Holland St 134 - Plans and Elevations.pdf PDF icon Holland St 134 - Staff Report.pdf 07/03/2018 - 10:33am
Rush St 75 ZBA 2018-66 Jun 20, 2018 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plan Set for 6-20-2018 PDF icon Staff Report 07/03/2018 - 10:30am
Smith Ave 10 ZBA 2018-62 Jun 20, 2018 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plan set for 6-20-2018 PDF icon Staff Report 07/03/2018 - 10:30am
Glen Street 12 ZBA 2018-68 Jun 20, 2018 PDF icon Decision PDF icon application plan set
PDF icon Revised plan set
PDF icon Staff Report 07/02/2018 - 2:42pm
Porter Street 109 ZBA 2017-126 Jan 03, 2018 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plan Set 10-26-17 PDF icon Staff Report 07/02/2018 - 2:41pm
Broadway 176-182 ZBA 2018-79 Jun 20, 2018 PDF icon Decision (WWOP)
PDF icon Memo
06/28/2018 - 3:18pm
Broadway 105 PB2018-11 Jun 21, 2018 PDF icon Decision PDF icon plan set PDF icon Staff Report 06/28/2018 - 3:16pm
Inner Belt Road 70 ZBA 2018-74 Jun 20, 2018 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plan Set 5-29-18 PDF icon Staff Report 06/28/2018 - 9:37am
Cedar Street 165 ZBA 2018-32 Jun 20, 2018 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plan Set 4-11-18
PDF icon Accessibility Letter 3-2-18
PDF icon Plan Set 6-5-18
PDF icon Soil Report 6-1-18
PDF icon Plan Set 6-12-18
PDF icon Plan Set 6-14-18
PDF icon Staff Report 06/28/2018 - 9:36am
Myrtle Street 41 ZBA 2018-65 Jun 20, 2018 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plan Set 1-23-18 PDF icon Staff Report 06/28/2018 - 9:35am
Raymond Avenue 93 ZBA 2018-56 Jun 20, 2018 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plan Set 5-16-18
PDF icon Plan Set 5-31-18
PDF icon Staff Report 06/28/2018 - 9:35am

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