Bradford’s Skateland is No More, Demolished to Make Way for Housing, Retail and City Park

A contractor’s shack remains near the rubble of Skateland, Railroad Avenue, Haverhill. (WHAV News photograph.)

The former Haverhill Skateland—a Bradford entertainment landmark for 71 years—is no more, coming down in recent days to make way for a 290-unit housing development, park, restaurant and retail complex along the Merrimack River.

Peter Carbone, whose family built and opened Skateland across from the Bradford train station, said “it was the largest interior open space without a post in the city!”

It first opened as Carbone’s Skateland by Louis “Pop” and Teresa Carbone in 1951. In recent years, Skateland was owned and operated by George and Mary Pyche, who reopened the skating rink in 1992 after other redevelopment efforts failed.

Salem, N.H.-based ACM Environmental Remediation and Demolition was retained by Procopio Companies of Middleton to remediate asbestos at the site and demolish the building in preparation for construction of “The Beck.”

The mixed-use development was approved by the Haverhill City Council. Besides apartments, it will feature 3.2 acres of public parks, playgrounds and active trails, and nearly 6,800 square feet of retail space. There will be two five-story buildings and parking on the site along the Merrimack River.

Peter Carbone’s father, Atillio, and Uncle Aldo also bought Bradford Depot from the railroad in 1963 for $1,000 with the intention of tearing it down to add parking for Skateland. With young children at home, the Carbone’s found night work at Skateland interfering with family needs. They decided to open a franchised Norge Village Cleaners at Bradford Depot, which later became Bradford Depot Laundromat. They sold Skateland in 1965.

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