Haverhill Residents Shape Proposed Water Street Rebuild; Plans Subject to Revision

Possible Water Street concepts designed by BSC Group of Boston.

(Additional photograph below)

Public input last Monday night on a possible future rebuild of a stretch of Water Street in the Haverhill’s Riverside neighborhood, is already shaping the project.

A number of residents gathered at St. John the Baptist Church gave feedback on the potential project that would provide new river outlooks, trails and bike lanes. Mayor James J. Fiorentini, City Engineer John H. Pettis III and Wayne Keefner, a consultant from BSC Group of Boston, showed drawings of possible designs. The concepts are designed for a future street that would accommodate walkers, bicyclists and drivers all on the same one-mile stretch from Mill Street to Lincoln Avenue.

Residents expressed concern about possibly too narrow roadways, wasted space for a grassy divider and safety. Mayoral Communications Director Shawn Regan, however, emphasized “the design is not final and will be reworked.”

As WHAV reported more than a week ago, Fiorentini said he is seeking a federal Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity—or RAISE—Grant to pay for the redesign and construction. The mayor said applying for the grant is no guarantee it will be awarded and, in fact, only a fraction of grant applications such as this are successful.

The city also seeks to have the project placed on the state’s Transportation Improvement Project list for money.

Standing, from left, are Wayne Keefner , a consultant from BSC Group of Boston; City Engineer John H. Pettis III and Mayor James J. Fiorentini. (Courtesy photograph.)

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