Permits and Applications

The Conservation Commission aims to protect Andover’s natural resources in accordance with the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act (M.G.L. 131 Section 40 A)  and the Town's Wetlands Protection Bylaw, Article XIV. According to the Wetlands Protection Act, wetlands include rivers, streams, ponds, marshes, wet meadows, bogs, swamps, and other wet areas. Wetlands play a critical role in protecting Andover's drinking water supply, reducing storm and flood damage, and creating habitat for countless species. 

If you are interested in conducting a regular activity in or near a wetland or floodplain, contact the Conservation Division of the Community Development & Planning Department. The staff can help explain the law and how it may affect your project. Please also explore the regulations issued under both the state's Wetlands Protection Act and Andover's Wetlands By-Law, as they outline specific standards that should be incorporated into the project design. If your project does not meet these standards, your application will be denied.

The next step is to submit a formal application, known as a Notice of Intent (or NOI) to the Andover Conservation Commission. Conservation meetings are normally held on the first and third Tuesday of each month beginning at 7:45pm. Filing deadlines for meetings are 12pm on the Tuesday two weeks prior to the meeting date. Once the public hearing is closed, the Commission will issue its decision, known as an Order of Conditions.

For small projects located entirely or partially in the 100-foot wetlands buffer zone (but not within 200 feet of a perennially running stream or river) you may submit a Request for Determination of Applicability with a plan sketch or other description of the work to be done, showing any measures you plan to take to protect nearby wetlands from alteration. If the project is determined to have no wetland impact, you will be given permission to proceed as soon as a 10-day appeal period passes.

Due to an increase in legal advertising costs effective March 1, 2020 the legal ad fees for applications filed with the Conservation Department will increase as follows:

Request for Determination of Applicability:  $145.00

 All other applications requiring a legal ad:  $185.00