Protect Belmont's Natural Wildlife Habitat

Help prevent Belmont Hill School from destroying woodland
to build a parking lot

What is going on?

Belmont Hill School has acquired a number of lots near their main campus in North Belmont.
It wants to deforest the area and construct a 153 car parking lot and light-industrial mechanical facility instead.
The proposal can be found
here.
Other materials related to the proposal can be found at
https://www.belmont-ma.gov/planning-board/pages/2022-planning-board-applications

The proposed development will clearcut woodlands which extend from Clifton Street to Park Avenue between Rutledge Road and Prospect Street.

Current Land use

Google maps image. See location here

Proposed Land use

Approximate scope of parking lot

  • The Belmont Hill School is planning to cut down most of the woodland on its property that is not federally protected wetland.

    • The woodlands is currently home to hundreds of species of animals, including Fox, Deer, Coyote, Mink, Woodchuck, Eastern Screech Owl, and many more.

    • A canopy of large (100+ foot) stately trees (80+ years) would be removed for the development.

  • The parking lot will hold 153 cars.

    • It will have 100,000 sq ft of pavement. Compare it to the 60,000 ft. Star Market lot in Waverley Square ― the Belmont Hill School lot is more than 50% larger.

    • It will have a devastating effect on traffic along Park Ave.

    • It will become a heat island, generate pollution and noise, and push out the native wildlife.

    • It is uphill from and will drain into a protected wetland.

  • The project does not represent the values of Belmont.

    • Belmont is committed to sustainability. See our Climate Action Plan

    • The Belmont light plant is ranked #2 in MA for clean energy. Belmont is ranked #10 in Greenest MA towns.

    • The town removed 90 spaces from the Belmont High School. This resulted in more carpooling and public transportation use.

    • The Belmont Hill School project goes in the opposite direction -- it encourages single driver commuting.

  • The proposed maintenance facility will include 680 gallons of gasoline and diesel above-ground fuel tanks.

  • The proposal places an eight foot wall setback only 10 feet from the neighbors' properties.

  • The land is zoned as residential. Belmont Hill School is using the Dover Amendment to override the town zoning by-laws. It claims the parking lot and industrial facility will be primarily for direct educational use.

  • Razing the properties on these lots will cost the town hundreds of thousands of dollars each year in lost tax revenue.

  • Belmont Hill School prides itself on being good neighbors and instilling a strong set of virtues in its students. This project is contrary to both of those ideals.

Let your voice be heard

Help oppose this project. Sign a petition to Keep Belmont Natural.

Write to the Planning Board

The Belmont Planning Board is currently hearing comments about the proposal.

If you need help signing the petition, click here for more information.

Are you affiliated with Belmont Hill School?

Student? Parent? Alumni?

  • Tell the Belmont Hill Schoool that this project is not consistent with the school's values

  • Help us find a more sustainable path forward for the school and this land.

Questions?
Want to join our campaign?

Contact belmontwild@gmail.com for more information or to volunteer to help.
Belmont wild is a coalition of Belmont residents concerned about sustainable development