Clean and Green Downtown Haverhill Effort Beautifies City, Turns to Basic Repairs

The recently expanded Rep. Brian S. Dempsey Boardwalk in downtown Haverhill. (WHAV News file photograph.)

While there was much they couldn’t tackle during the pandemic, a group of volunteers found they could work to make downtown Haverhill a more inviting place to visit and live.

Team Haverhill held a series of events called the Clean and Green Initiative, which involved cleaning up trash and debris, planting flowerbeds and undertaking other acts of beautifying the city. Team Haverhill Vice President Lisa Marzilli told the City Council Tuesday night what they accomplished since last spring.

“The mission of our Clean and Green Downtown Haverhill Project is to have our downtown be great. The things that we focused on included greening like adding flowers and shrubs and trees, making sure it’s walkable for citizens. A big element is making sure it is clean and maintained, adding public art and good signage,” she said.

Marzilli said her group picked up 69 bags of litter and 112 bags of leaves and weeds. They also placed flags at the post office and planted a total of 214 plants and shrubs. She added the project would not have been as successful without the help of the Department of Public Works and the downtown business owners who helped both financially and physically.

She said this year’s follow-up focus is replacing broken and missing bricks around streetlights and on sidewalk edges. She said the group mapped out the areas where brickwork needs to be done but they really need the city’s help to make that happen.

Councilor Thomas J. Sullivan agreed saying the broken bricks are a liability and he would do what he could to help with that project.

“You really are doing an amazing job and you deserve our help, especially with the brinks and I think it merits full support from the Council. We can possibly convince the mayor to find the funds to do this,” he said.

Sullivan said it will be discussed when budget session get underway.

Marzilli also told the council Team Haverhill will be holding its 14th annual visioning event, “Possible Dreams 2021: Moving Forward Together,” this coming Monday (March 8) at 7 p.m.

“Essentially, it’s a community conversation where you can dream what you want your city to be. It’s also another way to shape the future of our community by sharing and incubating new ideas that will make us better and better,” she explained.

Unlike years past, this will be a virtual event, held online and the public is encouraged to register and take part. (See separate WHAV story.)

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