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Nashua parkway route change means land for sale

Union Leader Correspondent

August 29. 2014 5:59PM

NASHUA — An aldermanic committee is recommending that the city sell several parcels acquired for the Broad Street Parkway alignment that are no longer needed.“All of these properties, the city or the state purchased — on behalf of the city — for the Broad Street Parkway,” said Tom Galligani, the city’s economic development director.

Although the parkway’s original route included the parcels, the revised version of the parkway now under construction is not in the path of those properties, Galligani said.

As a result, Galligani is suggesting that city officials authorize the sale of several properties at 1, 7 and 21 Pine St. Ext., 1-3 Everett St., 2-8 Everett St., 2a-2b Stevens Ave., 4-6 Stevens Ave., 83 Pine St. and vacant land off Pine Street.

If the properties are not sold before the parkway construction is completed, the proceeds would return to the federal government, Galligani said. However, if the properties, bought with federal dollars, are sold before the parkway is finished, the money will go back into the project to help with costs, he said.

City staff want to sell the properties within the Tree Streets neighborhood as one cluster, possibly issuing a request-for-proposals to enable future development in that area.

The property at 7 Pine St. Ext. is a city-owned parking lot that is leased by Riverside Properties of Nashua for $30,000 a year.

“We have a need to sell this property,” said Galligani, adding that the city should propose a direct sale to the current users of the parking lot. The land, he said, could be worth $300,000.

Although Alderman-at-Large James Donchess said the parking lot is necessary for occupants of the nearby residential buildings, Galligani stressed that if it isn’t sold now, the money would not be returned.

The properties at 1 and 21 Pine St. Ext. create a challenge for the city, said Galligani.

Located near the Public Service of New Hampshire substation, it may be difficult to develop the site, he said. Still, Galligani said city staff have been in discussions with representatives from PSNH about possibly relocating the substation elsewhere in the millyard where it could expand, although he stressed that notion is still preliminary.

“We think we have an opportunity here to do something interesting,” he said.

There could be the potential for development of a four-acre site with riverfront views if everything aligns correctly, said Galligani.

With the Broad Street Parkway expected to be finished by July or August 2015, Galligani said, it is important to consider the sale of the properties now.

According to the proposal, any properties taken by eminent domain must be offered to the original owner at the purchase price before they are appraised and placed on the market. All proceeds will be used for the ongoing Broad Street Parkway project.

The aldermanic Committee on Infrastructure supported the proposal this week, however the full Board of Aldermen will still have to vote on the matter.

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