Devens Regional Enterprise Zone

November 18, 1994

The Joint Boards of Selectmen:
    Town of Ayer
    Town of Harvard
    Town of Lancaster
    Town of Shirley
The Massachusetts Government Land Bank


  1. Authority

    1. These By-Laws, hereinafter the "By-Laws," shall be known and may be cited as the Zoning By-Laws of the Devens Regional Enterprise Zone established pursuant to Chapter 498 of the Acts of 1993 (the "Act"), as adopted by (i) the Towns of Ayer, Harvard, and Shirley (the "Towns"), (ii) the Massachusetts Government Land Bank (the "Land Bank"), and (iii) the Division of Capital Planning and Operations ("DCPO").

    2. The By-Laws are adopted pursuant to the legal authority provided by the Act.

  2. Purpose

    The Reuse Plan, By-Laws, and Regulations shall govern land development activities within Devens. The By-Laws establish objectives, policies, and standards to promote the expeditious and orderly conversion and redevelopment of Fort Devens for primarily civilian uses, including, but not limited to, industrial, commercial, residential, recreational, and conservation uses; and for the development of public facilities, utilities, and infrastructure necessary to support those uses.

  3. Legal Relation Among the By-Laws, the Reuse Plan, and the Commission Regulations

    1. Reuse Plan

      The Act requires the development and approval of both a Reuse Plan, hereinafter the "Reuse Plan," and the By-Laws. As provided in the Act, the Reuse Plan describes the physical characteristics of Devens, including, but not limited to, existing buildings, utilities, roads, and environmental features. The Reuse Plan also describes the planning process that has resulted in the identification of various preferred reuses of Devens and the methods and procedures by which the reuse of Devens will proceed. The Reuse Plan, when read in concert with the By-Laws, establishes a comprehensive plan for the reuse of Devens.

    2. By-Laws

      As provided in the Act, the By-Laws furnish the legal foundation and procedural structure for the implementation of the planning and reuse goals and objectives set forth in the Reuse Plan. The By-Laws (i) identify the various zoning districts and overlay districts and land uses and range of activities that will be permitted in each of the zoning and overlay districts; (ii) establish measures of density and intensity for development allowable in each zoning district and in each overlay district; and (iii) establish the general procedures through which the By-Laws will be administered.

    3. Commission Regulations

      As provided in the Act, the Commission shall develop and adopt a comprehensive and detailed set of land-use regulations, hereinafter the "Regulations," not later than July 14, 1995. The Regulations shall be consistent with the By-Laws and shall provide additional substantive and procedural controls over the reuse of Devens. The Regulations shall contain detailed land-use controls, including, but not limited to, site design standards, subdivision control standards, watershed and water resource protection standards, standards and procedures required to ensure full compliance with state wetlands protection laws, and historic district regulations. The Regulations shall contain administrative, procedural, and enforcement provisions to be utilized by the Commission for the implementation of the Reuse Plan and By-Laws. The Regulations shall also incorporate the streamlined permitting process established by the By-Laws. The Commission may adopt and enforce interim regulations, which may include existing regulations of the Towns, consistent with the By-Laws.

  4. Effective Date of By-Laws

    The By-Laws shall be effective within thirty (30) days from the date on which the last of the Towns approves the Reuse Plan and By-Laws. The town clerk in each Town shall provide a written notification to the Land Bank stating the results of the town meeting vote on the Reuse Plan and By-Laws.

  5. Severability

    The provisions of the By-Laws are severable and if any of its provisions shall be held unconstitutional or otherwise unenforceable by any court of competent jurisdiction, the decision of such court shall not affect or impair any of the remaining provisions.

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