A 25-acre parcel of land near the Haverhill-Methuen border cannot be used for purposes other than farming or conservation, a city agency has ruled. New paperwork inked by Haverhill’s Conservation Commission granted 996 West Lowell Ave. a conservation restriction, meaning that the land must remain undeveloped in perpetuity.
The land is formally protected by the Essex County Greenbelt Association on behalf of Barbara A. DiSalvo and Janice D. Anton of The Anton Haverhill Realty Trust in exchange for a sizable tax credit.
“The Anton Farm embodies the rural character of this region of Haverhill. The property provides significant ecological, scenic and agricultural values to our community,” Commission Vice Chairman Ralph Basiliere said after his governing body voted Feb. 14 to recommend that Mayor James J. Fiorentini and City Council approve the deal.
Backed by the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, the conservation restriction’s terms were evaluated for the public good and agreed upon by several stakeholders before making it to the Conservation Commission’s desk, Basiliere said.
According to Essex County Greenbelt, Fiorentini and the Council must decide on next steps no later than the end of this month.
A similar agreement was reached in 2012 when the Bailey family worked with the Greenbelt land trust nonprofit to protect 60 acres of farmland on Kingsbury Avenue in the city’s Bradford section.