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Jan 11, 2016 10:25 PM

Bedford residents voice concern over proposed restaurant from Murphy's Taproom owner

BEDFORD - At a Planning Board meeting over a proposed restaurant and function hall, many spoke out over the size of the project.

Andrew Cutting lives on the other side of the tree line from where the facility would be built.

“The parking is being expanded, there's going to be lights, there's going to be live music a lot of people coming and going. Traffic is already a major concern, I think there's already more traffic than 101 can handle,” Cutting said.

State Rep. Keith Murphy bought the land where the Weathervane restaurant used to be on Route 101.

He’s the current owner of Murphy’s Taproom in Manchester, and he promises to transform the now vacant lot in Bedford into a rustic pub made for families and people on their way home from work, with a function space for weddings.

The town and State Department of Transportation recommend they expand 101 to add left turning lanes to safely enter and exit the parking lot. It is a costly project Murphy and his team want to avoid.

Neighbors are also concerned about the amount of trees that would be cut down, for fear it will eliminate the barrier they now have between them and the busy highway.

Murphy says there will be very little change to the tree line and plans to add more vegetation.

Neighbors have environmental concerns about the property being on a bedrock.

“That's going to collect everything from salt and oil, whatever else is left by vehicles or coming off 101 is going to come down the hill and it could compromise our wells,” Cutting said.

Murphy says the septic and drainage designs are within town standards. Residents aren’t totally on board, many are upset they weren’t filled in on the extent of the plans until about a week ago.

“It would just ruin this whole neighborhood, I'm sure our housing values would go down,” said Tammy Williams, an abutter to the proposed project.

Murphy says he regrets not meeting with the abutters prior to this meeting, and is open to starting that conversation with them going forward.

After hours of discussion, the Planning Board voted to table to item until their next meeting on Jan. 25.

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