MERRIMACK — A formal site plan has been submitted to town planners to construct a mixed-use development with 232 apartments along the Daniel Webster Highway.
Although the Planning Board previously approved a conditional use permit for the Edgebrook Heights project, the board must now review the official plans for the development near the former Nashua Corp. site.
The project includes a proposed 156 units of multifamily apartments, 76 units of elderly housing for residents 55 and older, 34,400-square-feet of commercial, retail and office space, a 4,000-square-foot convenience store and 12 gasoline fueling stations.
“We have designed these (apartments) to an aesthetic that caters to young professionals and empty nesters,” said Adam Wagner with Market Square Architects of Portsmouth.
According to Wagner, each of the four apartment buildings will have a modern design with various exterior facades and a lower level parking podium.
“We are going to do our best to disguise the parking podium,” Wagner told the Planning Board this week.
If approved, the 36-acre parcel will house four separate, four-story residential buildings. One apartment building will be age restricted with 36 one-bedroom units and 40 two-bedroom units. The three remaining buildings will include market rate apartments with a total of 60 one-bedroom units and 96 two-bedroom units.
“There are six existing lots that comprise the Edgebook site,” said Tom Zajac, a civil engineer with Hayner Swanson, Inc.
In addition to the site plan, the Planning Board is also reviewing a proposed boundary consolidation and subdivision plan.
The first phase of the project includes the four apartment buildings, a clubhouse and private dog park. The commercial, retail and office space will be constructed after the apartments are completed, according to the preliminary plans on file at town hall.
Robert Best, chairman of the Planning Board, said this week that he is pleased with the modern design of the proposed buildings.
However, he questioned how SMC Management will mitigate environmental issues from potential dog waste entering the nearby river via the proposed dog park.
Bob Simons of SMC Management said his firm has zero tolerance for tenants who do not pick up after their dogs. Every dog owner is required to submit their dog’s DNA upon signing leases, and tenants will be fined for the first two instances in which waste is not picked up. He said the third offense would result in eviction.
Richard Foote of Indian Rock Road said that while the mixed-use project looks nice, it is similar to all of the other residential developments in town.
“It is more urban sprawl that, in the end, the town will pay for,” said Foote. He maintained that while the development may be tax positive in the short-term, it will eventually place additional demands on the local police and fire departments.
The Planning Board did not approve the site plan this week, but will continue reviewing the proposal next month.