Lupoli Companies, which has some high-profile, downtown Haverhill development projects, attracted the attention of Gov. Charlie Baker and other officials Wednesday when opening its rooftop Pavilion Field at Riverwalk in Lawrence.
Baker, Lawrence Mayor Brian De Pena and developer Sal Lupoli cut the ribbon on Pavilion Field at Riverwalk, a rooftop turf field on top of a new 1,250-car parking garage overlooking the river and Lawrence’s historic clock tower. The field, which is outfitted for football, soccer, lacrosse, and field hockey, will be donated to Lawrence’s Pop Warner football program and local soccer clubs.
“This is the sort of thing that gives people a sense of place and a sense of pride for their community. And it is a flywheel—it builds momentum. I really look forward to seeing you continue to build a better and stronger Lawrence,” Baker said.
Pop Warner football players, Lawrence youth cheerleaders and soccer players officially marked the opening of the field before hundreds of community leaders, friends, family and elected officials, including former Lawrence Mayor Michael Sullivan, state Housing and Economic Development Secretary Mike Kennealy, state Sen. Barry Finegold and state Reps. Frank Moran and Christina Minicucci.
The redeveloped property was redeveloped over 20 years through a public-private partnership and includes 596 apartments, 1,400 residents and dozens of small businesses, including banks, salons, medical offices and labs. Riverwalk is also home to satellite campuses for Cambridge College, Northern Essex Community College and Suffolk University’s Sawyer Business School.
The state invested $13 million into the project to build infrastructure, including roadways and utilities and the project also received assistance through tax incentive programs, including a historic preservation incentive granted to the property, which was once home to Wood Mill. The mills closed in the 1950s and the site sat vacant and blighted for decades until Lupoli purchased the property.