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Town of Marblehead
Abbot Hall
188 Washington Street
Marblehead, MA 01945
What We Do
What We Do
Requests for Building Projects
The ZBA hears requests for zoning variances and special permits.  Most hearings held by the board relate to property owners who wish to expand their homes or to build a new home on lots where construction is not permitted by right within the specific zoning district, usually because of setback and sideyard restrictions.

In granting a variance or issuing a special permit, the board must find that the change will not adversely affect the neighborhood and that it is an appropriate use of the site.

The board also hears appeals based on zoning issues raised by property owners and abutters who are "aggrieved" by the actions of the Building Commissioner in granting or denying a building permit. Decisions reached by the board can be appealed to the Land Court of Massachusetts or to the Massachusetts Superior Court.

Once an applicant submits an application to appear before the Zoning Board of Appeals they are scheduled on the first available hearing date. If the first available hearing date is more than 65 days from the submission date of the application, the applicant is asked to sign an extension form confirming their acceptance of the hearing schedule and their agreement to wait until the next available hearing date.

The administrative work of the Zoning Board of Appeals is done through the Engineering Department.  Copies of the Town Zoning By-Laws, application forms and information regarding filing procedures are available in the engineering office.

Zoning Special Permit or Variance
Applications for a zoning  special permit or variance are available in the engineer's office.
$ 75.00

Sign Permits
Applications for a special permit or variance of the Sign By-Laws are available in the engineer's office.
$ 25.00

Zoning Board of Appeals legal ads are published in a newspaper of general circulation in Marblehead  ( Marblehead Reporter, Salem News or Lynn Item) once in each of  two consecutive weeks, the first publication to be not less than fourteen days before the day of the hearing.  ZBA agendas are posted at the Mary Alley Municipal Building and Abbot Hall at least fourteen days prior to the hearing date and the abutters and abutters of abutters within 300 feet of the applicant's property are notified by mail two weeks prior to the hearing date.