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Tewksbury, Andover Building Inspectors Shut Down Unapproved South St. Contractor Yard

UPDATE: Some contractors and others that were using this site for a dump and storage were not informed of the cease and desist, leading to a line of trucks on South St. that blocked cars into driveways and impeded the progress of school buses.

Town manager Richard Montuori confirmed that police and the Tewksbury Building Inspector are on the scene.

When resident Bob Lambert took to social media about the situation near his South St. home of 56 years, he had documented dozens of trucks and cars flying up and down the narrow, 20 MPH road at all hours of the day and night, including weekends. The destination for many of those heavy vehicles was a lot at 1323 South St. owned by Matthew Strong of Forever Endeavor, an LLC registered at 4 Rennie Dr., Andover, that is being used to store construction materials, landscaping equipment, junk cars and other debris. 

That land, which is zoned industrial, is in Andover but is accessible only through a residential area of Tewksbury, via South St. The formerly wooded lot — which has been the subject of several project proposals over the years — has been stripped of trees and is now dotted with cement blocks delineating storage areas for various landscaping businesses. 

According to Lambert, complaints to Andover officials yielded little satisfaction. 

At the Sept. 27 Planning Board meeting, member Eric Ryder raised Lambert’s concerns and asked that the Tewksbury Building Commissioner look into the matter and send a letter to or confer with his counterpart in Andover.

Board member Vinny Fratalia, who is involved in the Tewksbury Home Build on South St., confirmed that many landscape firms use the lot to dump debris and store equipment and that the trucking volume is significant for a narrow road with many families and children. 

Tewksbury building commissioner Mark Bertonassi did reach out to Andover. As a result, Andover commissioner Christopher Clemente found that the property is currently being used as a “contractors yard” without having first obtained the required Zoning Board of Appeals approval. Based on that finding, Clemente issued a cease and desist letter and ordered Strong to remove all equipment, vehicles, construction and earth materials forthwith.

Strong may appeal that order, but selectman Jayne Wellman pointed out that if the owner does seek a special permit from Andover’s ZBA, Tewksbury abutters will be notified and invited to attend that hearing.

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