What is the Risk?

    This 2,000 sq. ft. 18th-century "Cape". . .

This 2,000 sq. ft. 18th-century "Cape". . .

    could become a 3-times larger “McMansion”

could become a 3-times larger “McMansion”

What is the risk?  While there are few vacant developable parcels in Truro’s Seashore District, the biggest threat is the “tear down.”  There are 153 privately developed residential properties that are less than 2,500 sq. ft. that could be replaced with something much larger – significantly changing Truro’s incomparable rural and historic character. These properties include:

  • 55 properties on lots greater than 3 acres
  • 61 properties on lots between 3/4 acre and 3 acres
  • 1 property currently under review for a demolition permit request
  • more than a dozen properties for sale, several on lots greater than 3 acres.

There is nothing in the Truro Zoning Bylaw or National Park Service regulations preventing these modest houses from being substantially enlarged or replaced with significantly larger buildings.

How will Truro respond to this risk?  Most people who choose to live here or visit Truro do so because of the unique small-scale human presence on the landscape and for the serene quality of the Cape Cod National Seashore.  Wellfleet and Eastham have already acted to protect their Seashore lands with zoning that limits building size.  For example, Wellfleet has placed a building size limit of 2,800 sq. ft. for a dwelling and a 3,600 sq. ft. limit for the total of all buildings on a property.