Salem condo developers get zoning board approval to add more unitsBy MELISSA PROULX
Union Leader Correspondent
February 13. 2018 11:50PM
SALEM — The Planning Board is the next stop for a condominium development off Sally Sweet Way.
The zoning board granted a variance for four additional units last week.
The development will now consist of 18 units after 14 were approved just over a year ago. Developers were able to add the four units by filling in the space between the two rooftops, said Mark Gross, a principal engineer at MHF Design Consultants working on the project.
The units, which are located off Sally Sweets Way and will sell for about $500,000, are designed to fill a void in Salem’s housing market, Gross said.
“One thing that’s sorely lacking in the town of Salem are high-end condominium developments,” he said.
The units are being marketed to two demographic groups, one being young professionals who might work in Boston, but either don’t want to or can’t afford to live there, he said.
“These are something you might find in Boston, but at a much lower price,” Gross said.
The other group would be those looking to downsize and age in place, he said.
Resident Tom Whittaker said that he was in favor of both the 14-condo and 18-condo versions. He said he thinks developers did a good job shielding the project from the surrounding neighbors.
“They’ve actually buffered it so I can’t even see the property in the summertime,” he said.
Resident Glenn Edwards said that he was concerned about parking.
“There were concerns from residents if they had visitors it could spill out onto Sally Sweets (Way),” he said, which would be a safety concern.
Gross said the project’s developers think they have a more than adequate number of visitor spaces and that he doesn’t believe four additional units will bring in more visitors.
Board member Bonnie Wright said she found the aesthetics of the new design more pleasing.
“I like the looks of it better,” she said.
Member Michael Smith voted against the project.
“I wasn’t thrilled with this to begin with because it was a residential area,” he said. “We’ve gone from a smaller density, to a much larger density.”