WAKEFIELD — The Zoning Board of Appeals continues to be frustrated with the slow pace of progress in hearings for two proposed 40B affordable housing projects on Nahant Street. But mostly, the board agrees with neighbors that both projects are too large and will cause undue traffic problems on Nahant Street and surrounding areas.

One of the proposed projects is a 100-unit 40B at 127 Nahant St. (the former site of Precision Honing). The other is a 24-unit 40B proposed for 32 Nahant St.

At last week’s meeting ZBA Chairman Tom Lucey read portions of a letter from Jason Panos, the attorney for the 127 Nahant St. project, seeking a continuance of the hearing to the board’s June 26 meeting.

Panos also provided in his letter an update on the work the development team is doing to address storm water management, parking and traffic circulation on the site. 

Panos also noted that the project was scheduled to go before the Traffic Advisory Committee at its June 12 meeting, but the developer was asking to push that meeting off until July.

Given the history of delays by the development team, ZBA member Chip Tarbell said that he didn’t think the board should make any special accommodations such as holding extra meetings to discuss the project.

“This is getting to be ridiculous,” he said.

The board voted to continue the hearing to its June 26 meeting.

Regarding the 32 Nahant St. project, attorney Jonathan Silverstein filled in for his law partner Paul Haverty at last week’s hearing.

Silverstein noted that the project was on the agenda for last Friday’s Traffic Advisory Committee meeting.

Lucey noted that, once both of the Nahant Street 40B projects cleared the TAC, the ZBA had intended to hold its own special meeting to discuss the traffic impact of both projects with local public safety officials in attendance. 

Since both projects are using the same traffic consultant, Board members would have preferred to deal with traffic from both projects at one meeting. But since only one project was ready, they agreed that it made sense to do them one at a time. 

Still, Tarbell pointed out that when discussing the traffic impact of the 32 Nahant St. project, there was nothing preventing the board from talking about the other project as well, even if the TAC had yet to weigh in.

Moving to other aspects of 32 Nahant St., architect Andrew Jones pointed out that one story and two units had been removed from one side of the building, reducing the unit count to 24. He displayed images showing where Juliet balconies had been added to some units. He also showed an updated list of exterior materials to be used.

Things got a little tense when attorney Silverstein suggested that the developer was trying to address the board’s concerns over the size of the project but was limited by economic feasibility.

Lucey said that while the board appreciated the efforts to reduce the size of the project, he didn’t want to hear about the developer’s profit margin.

“You’re talking about neighbors who are seeing a serious impact on their property, on their quality of life,” Lucey said. “To hear about the developer’s profit – I’m not interested.”

Silverstein disagreed, pointing out that one of the legal standards that is applied under Chapter 40B relates to whether the requirements of the Zoning Board render a project economically infeasible.

“That is explicitly written into the statute,” he said.

But Lucey reiterated that the neighbors were not interested in the developer’s profits.

When the hearing was opened to the public, Nahant Street resident Karen McMaster said that she would have preferred town houses over the large building proposed. 

“There is nothing like this on the whole street,” she said. “We’re just asking to something smaller. We’re invested here. The neighbors are the ones who are impacted.” 

Victoria Turner of Wilson Road agreed that town houses would have been a better choice for the site.

“This project is too big,” she said. “A giant apartment complex doesn’t fit in the neighborhood and doesn’t fit on the street.”

Paula Gardella of Wilson Road also said that the project was too big and asked for the size to be further reduced.

“Get it more reasonable so we feel like we’re still a neighborhood,” she insisted.

Cheryl Drews of Nahant Street highlighted residents’ ongoing concerns with the impact of development on traffic. 

Other concerns raised by residents included the impact of large developments of local schools.

The hearing was continued to the ZBA’s June 26 meeting.