The owner of the former Haverhill Paperboard site says this aerial photograph demonstrates why the city cannot build a rail trail.
Lawyers for the owner of the former Haverhill Paperboard property are demanding the city identify anyone else claiming to own its land. They also say their plans for a solar power farm are illegally restricted by the city.
In a 33-page package sent to WHAV Sunday, developer Pentucket LLC decided to take its case to the media since learning from city Purchasing Agent Orland Pacheco “the city appears to be discussing redevelopment options on the property with another owner.”
“The city is clearly in discussions with a party that represents to be the owner, however, the city refuses to identify the party.” Pentucket President Brian Wilson speculates the party to be Fort Point Development, but claims that company defaulted on an agreement to buy the land in 2013 (See separate story).
Wilson: Rail Trail Blocked by Other Uses
Wilson also says Haverhill Mayor James J. Fiorentini’s vision for the Bradford waterfront is flawed. Wilson notes the mayor’s proposed rail trail is impossible because it would be blocked by existing businesses, a cemetery, the city’s own wastewater treatment plant and wetlands. He also said anyone else talking to the city about owning the property is committing fraud.
Dynamic Energy plans to build a solar farm that would supply energy to city’s wastewater treatment plant, and save the city an estimated $7.6 to $8.3 million over 20 years. However, Wilson says, the city is violating state law by prohibiting solar energy projects in its waterfront zoning district overlay.
“Our proposal would save the city approximately 10 times what the mayor is celebrating in his (2014) State of the City Address, which doesn’t include the increase in tax revenue and the gift of a Riverfront Park.”
In a tit for tat email exchange this week between Fiorentini and Wilson, Fiorentini said he hasn’t yet seen Pentucket file any building permit requests. Wilson responded, “I looked in the building department and there are no permits for (a) donating land to the municipality and (b) solar field installations. Feel free to point those out. The court cast (sic) is not relevant, period. What is relevant is how dishonest you are.”