Haverhill City Council Tuesday Considers Apartment and Retail Plan to Replace DiBurro’s Ward Hill

DiBurro’s Function Facility, 887 Boston Road, Haverhill. (WHAV News photograph.)

Click image for Haverhill City Council agenda.

Plans to build 152 apartments and 5,000 square feet of commercial space on the Ward Hill property now occupied by DiBurro’s Function Facility is before the Haverhill City Council tomorrow night.

As WHAV reported first last month, Princeton Properties is seeking a zoning amendment to create a “Planned Development District” on the 6.5-acre property at 887 Boston Road. Princeton Properties, which already owns the former Forest Acres complex, also off Route 125, proposes at least four buildings and a club house.

All access to the property would be from Boston Road and not the heavily travelled Route 125 near the Ward Hill Connector.

The Haverhill Planning Board voted June 9 to favorably recommend the zoning change to city councilors. During its deliberations, Economic Development and Planning Director William Pillsbury Jr. reminded the board the city’s new Master Plan provides “new tools” to “create zoning for projects that make sense.”

Planning Board member Nate Robertson, while acknowledging the project is still in the early stage, asked whether affordable rental units had been considered. Jeff Brown, representing Princeton Properties, said only that half of the project is comprised of one-bedroom units that “will obviously be cheaper.”

According to information provided to the Planning Board, the DiBurro family is keeping a small portion of the site for possible future commercial use.

The proposed zoning would allow no more than 45 apartment units in any one building of not more than five stories, retail space of no more than 10,000 square feet of gross floor area and restaurant also not to exceed 10,000 square feet of gross floor area.

The Haverhill City Council plans to meet at 7 p.m.., Tuesday, July 13, online and in-person from the Theodore A. Pelosi Jr. Council Chambers, City Hall, 4 Summer St., Haverhill. As a public service, 97.9 WHAV plans to carry the meeting live.

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