NASHUA — Unable to find a tenant for a new restaurant building constructed at Renaissance Downtowns’ waterfront development, the building will now be converted into additional apartments.
“They have pursued finding a restaurant to come into this area and they have not been able to find one,” said Jack McTigue, a civil engineer with TFMoran.
The two-story building at 7 Bancroft St., which is part of the Renaissance Downtowns’ Residences at Riverside Landing complex, was originally constructed for a 50-seat restaurant and retail space, according to McTigue.
He approached the Nashua Planning Board last week asking that the site plan be amended to convert the restaurant building into seven apartments — two studio apartments, four one-bedroom units and one two-bedroom unit.
“Everything in phase one has already been constructed,” said McTigue.
Phase one of the Residences at Riverside Landing includes an initial 152 luxury apartments on Bridge Street.
The entire project, when it was first introduced, included the potential of 750 apartments, once completed.
However, the second phase of the project will not be constructed because of an issue with an emergency overflow basin associated with the Army Corps of Engineers and the city, according to McTigue.
Instead, the developer requested that a dog park be constructed where the phase two building was originally planned, as well as a new parking area for 19 additional vehicles.
“It will fit well with the existing apartments and fit well in the neighborhood,” McTigue said of the amended plan.
He stressed that there may still be an opportunity for a restaurant and retail space in the future as the development progresses.
“One of the selling points of this plan was that having shops and a restaurant in the complex would be a way to bring people into the area who might not be living there,” said David Robbins, Planning Board member.
“The whole master plan is still evolving as we speak,” explained Bob Simons of SMC Management.
Simons said that although the developers thought the Bridge Street and Bancroft Street area would be an ideal location for a restaurant or small store, he said there simply is not enough visibility from the roadway.
As the master plan develops, he said commercial uses in the middle of the parcel may be modified if there is room for townhouses or condos.
The Planning Board approved the amended site plan to convert the existing building into seven apartments, construct a dog park and add nearly 20 parking spaces.
Edward Weber, Planning Board member, said it is disappointing that the restaurant could not come to fruition.
However, he said the building that will be converted into additional housing units is beautiful, adding the dog park will be useful for residents in the development.
“I’d be in favor of this,” Weber said of the amended plan that was ultimately adopted.