Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Build, Baby, Build

Amherst Carriage Shops, AKA One East Pleasant Street, coming soon!

The August 12 Summary Judgement slapdown to the lawsuit against One East Pleasant filed by abutter/competitor Joel Greenbaum and paid for by dozens of fellow NIMBYs has NOT been appealed to the Massachusetts Appeals Court, where a panel of three judges would review the trial Court's decision; therefor the lawsuit is dead, Dead, DEAD.
Developer Kyle Wilson said yesterday the first order of business will be hazardous waste abatement in the former downtown hotel turned commercial strip mall, as any building constructed over fifty years ago has asbestos.  Then comes the demolition.

The Carriage Inn was very successful in the early years but fell victim to increased competition for the lucrative academic market from the University Lodge just down the road and the tax exempt Campus Center Hotel.
Amherst Carriage Inn circa 1960 

Meanwhile Archipelago's other nearby five-story, mixed-used building, Kendrick Place, is now over 75% occupied and thus far no major problems to report with either rowdy late night partying or a parking Armageddon.

 Kendrick Place 1st weekend of occupancy

At last week's Public Works Committee meeting DPW Chief Guilford Mooring presented up to date plans for the roundabout in front of Kendrick Place.

The curbline immediately in front of Kendrick leading onto Triangle Street will be pushed further north into the intersection to improve traffic flow and all allow better streetscape infrastructure (grass,lighting, benches, trees, etc)  if the town goes with a roundabout.

 Curbline (circled) will move northward a few feet

During the public comment period the PWC heard John Fox request an underground tunnel for the intersection whether it becomes a roundabout or not, citing safety concerns over students commuting to UMass.

 DPW Chief Guilford Mooring assuring Jeff Brown none of his commercial property is needed for roundabout

This of course would probably double the cost of the intersection, and the PWC has already gone on record at their 7/10/14 meeting saying they unanimously support a roundabout -- but only if it is constructed without any town funds.

 Most up to date intersection plan (roundabout)

Although Public Works Committee Chair Christine Gray-Mullen did say the previous recommendation was made over a year ago when the town was in a far different financial situation with road repairs.

Her Committee will continue discussion of the roundabout at their October 15 meeting and will take another vote on a intersection recommendation at that meeting or the following one.

The town is trying to incorporate some of the intersection work using the $1.5 million MassWorks project money already in hand.  The relocation of those ugly above-ground utility poles to an underground location is expected to start soon.


Anonymous said...

While it is nice to see development in both commercial and residential areas of downtown the area these new developments are being built is a ghost town compared to the block south of the Kellogg Street lights (aka the Antonio's Pizza block). Unles businesses moving into that space there will be no reason to believe that we'll see an increase in foot traffic.

Anonymous said...

Kendrick Place is 75% occupied? But that's impossible. The doomsayers said no one would be able to afford the rent. Also, aren't the streets now choked with the renters' cars? Ha! Ha! what baloney.

Great job Archipelago! Thanks for doing a quality job.

Anonymous said...

Build baby build!

Anonymous said...

With luck these building will draw some students walking along east pleasant rather than through the phillips street area

Anonymous said...

A new winter is on our door step. And with it the parking problems will begin to show
up. Let take a wait and see position.

Anonymous said...

Thought RM said it was going to be a mild one. Ya gotta love global warming! People LIKE it a little warmer, don't they? Pretty soon you won't have to worry about parking. Your car will be stuck in road tar. lol

Anonymous said...

How many tenants are students and how many non-students? Any numbers?