§653. Highway boundaries
1. Authority. The department may establish the boundary lines, limits or locations of any or all state highways and state aid highways and cause durable monuments to be erected at the angles thereof.
[ 1999, c. 188, §1 (NEW) .]
2. Reestablishment of lost or doubtful boundaries. Whenever in the opinion of the department the boundary lines, limits or location of any state highway or state aid highway or any part thereof are lost, uncertain or doubtful, the department may reestablish those lines, limits or location; land lying within those lines is a part of the highway right-of-way. The department shall file with the town clerk of the town in which the highway is located and with the registry of deeds in the county in which the highway is located maps showing the boundary lines, limits or location of such a reestablished highway, and those lines, boundaries, limits and location are those of the reestablished highway. The department shall post descriptions of those parts of such highways that lie within towns in one conspicuous place in those towns and at 2 points along the highway, and it shall publish a description of those parts of highways that lie within any county in a newspaper, if any, in that county.
In the absence of record, plan or layout sufficient to reestablish the boundary lines, limits or location of a state highway or state aid highway, the width of a state highway or state aid highway is deemed to extend to and include the area lying outside the shoulders and ditch lines and within any landmarks or historic features such as fences, fence posts, tree rows, stone walls, corner stones or other monuments indicating the boundary line.
In the absence of record, plan or layout or any landmarks or historic features that evidence the location of the boundaries of the right-of-way, the width of a state highway or state aid highway is deemed to extend to and include the sidewalks, shoulders and ditch lines adjacent to that highway and to the top of cuts or toe of fills where they exist.
Any person aggrieved by the reestablishment of boundary lines, limits and location of a reestablished highway may file a complaint for the assessment of damages to the Superior Court in the county where the reestablished highway is located within 60 days from the filing of maps with the registry of deeds, and not thereafter, and the court shall assess the damages, if any, by jury, as long as the reestablished boundary lines, limits or location are not the same as originally established. The department shall pay from its funds all expenses incurred and the amount of final judgment and costs if damages are awarded, except that the amount of the final judgment and costs must be paid by the plaintiff if the plaintiff fails to recover any damages.
[ 1999, c. 188, §1 (NEW) .]
1971, c. 593, §22 (AMD). 1999, c. 188, §1 (RPR).