The rumbling, beeping, jackhammering of construction in Quincy and other South Shore communities is annoying to some people. But town and city leaders say it’s music to their ears and a sign of economic health for 2019 and beyond.
It means more houses, apartments and condos are being built. And housing, they say, will eventually bring new industry, more small businesses and jobs.
“We’ve got good momentum going in Quincy Center and we want to use that on other parts of the city,” Quincy Mayor Thomas Koch said.
Norwell selectmen are looking to have the Economic Development Committee look into a Chapter 43D designation for 98 Accord Park Drive based on the recommendations given by the Metropolitan Area Planning Council and have it voted on at the annual May Town Meeting.
Representatives from MAPC are working with town officials to better utilize Norwell’s commercial properties and to help reduce the tax burden for homeowners.
MAPC’s recommendations are to have the Accord Park Drive properties listed in Norwell’s Economic Growth Plan as strictly commercial properties and to have Queen Anne’s Plaza grow into a mix of residential and commercial properties.
Selectmen are looking to have possible Chapter 43D zoning changes for Accord Park on the annual Town Meeting Warrant in May.
HANOVER — In the woodsy back corner of the 77-acre Hanover Mall, the new owners of the long-struggling shopping center see an opportunity to change its fortunes.
It’s not the movie theater that sits there now, or another big box store. No, it’s housing — four buildings with nearly 300 apartments that PREP Property Group, an Ohio-based company that bought the mall in 2016, wants to build.
If it wins town approval, PREP would sell the land to a housing developer and use the proceeds to blow up the half-century-old indoor mall and turn it into an outdoor-oriented “lifestyle center,” like many of its newer competitors, with hundreds of customers in those apartments, just steps away.
“When I heard about their plans, it was like a revelation,” said Ed Callahan, who has managed the Hanover Mall through years of foreclosure, bank ownership, and slumping sales. “We really lucked out with a new owner that saw this place as an opportunity.”
PEMBROKE – This weekend, thousands of South Shore high school seniors will toss their mortarboards in the air and go home with freshly minted diplomas, eager to chart their own paths.
David Kingsley would love it if even just a few of them would come work for him.
But Kingsley, the co-owner of a Pembroke waterproofing company, knows that the majority of this spring’s graduates will head off to four-year colleges in the fall, and many of those who don’t will likely be hired by other companies desperate for skilled, and even unskilled, workers as the region’s unemployment rate hovers below 3 percent.
That’s because his is among the countless companies statewide now scrambling to find employees amid a skills shortage that has prompted tens of millions of dollars in state spending and has some calling on high schools to encourage students to consider vocational training and trade work as an alternative to four-year college degrees that are increasingly accompanied by crippling student debt.
“We want to grow the company,” said Kingsley, who co-owns Watchman Waterproofing and has about 17 employees. “We want to expand, but we can’t because we just don’t have the help.”
Senator Ed Markey meets with South Shore Chamber of Commerce leaders; addresses regional economic development at June 2nd luncheon
Economic development and the need to attract and retain young business leaders and innovators to the South Shore and Commonwealth in general were on the table for discussion during a recent luncheon with U.S. Senator Ed Markey (D) hosted by The South Shore Chamber of Commerce.
Meeting with an audience of 60 Chamber leaders at Alba in Quincy, the senator spoke to the importance of job creation and economic growth during the June 2nd luncheon.
Sen. Markey, a long-time advocate for increased corporate responsibility called for investing in small business to spur innovation and competition.
Braintree Mayor Joseph Sullivan, Quincy Mayor Thomas Koch and Weymouth Mayor Robert Hedlund attended the event, during which Sen. Markey took questions from the audience.
Atlanta analyst J Mac Holladay says the South Shore has “so many assets,” but challenges as well. He outlined the Chamber’s new “Choosing Our Future” report at a Thursday luncheon.
But Holladay – a former economic development director for three Southern states – said the South Shore’s economy could stall, and the area become less attractive to families and professionals, if the chamber and local towns and cities don’t work together to take advantage of what he called a “once in a generation opportunity” to get in gear with a rapidly changing economy.
And he said the heart of that opportunity will come from cultivating more South Shore business, and giving young families and professionals reasons to live and work here.
“That’s the keys to the kingdom,” Holladay said.
His comments followed a luncheon presentation of a new Market Street report, “South Shore 2030: Choosing Our Future,” which examines the area’s long-term challenges as well as its prospects.