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.”
After driving through a secluded and sylvan Plymouth landscape to arrive at A.D. Makepeace Company’s Redbrook Village, one arrives at what’s described as a “New England village, re-imagined.”
The focus is on the village green and surrounding nature. Homes and parking lots are tucked discretely behind trees and shrubbery. There’s a farmers market, café, fire pit surrounded by Adirondack chairs, boat launch, YMCA, playing field and basketball court.
A band plays on the green where residents have gathered for a “JamBEERee” to enjoy hotdogs, craft beer and a sense of community. Later in the afternoon, some will make their way to the Meeting House to watch the Patriots.
Pilot Program will provide another option for drivers on I-93 northbound in Boston who have a final destination of the Seaport in South Boston
BOSTON – The Massachusetts Department of Transportation today announced that beginning Monday, October 15, 2018, all traffic will be able to use sections of the South Boston Bypass Road and a portion of the I-93 High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV lane) in South Boston at all times for a 12-month period. This pilot program will provide another route option for drivers traveling inbound to the South Boston area from I-93 northbound and members of the public are advised that the South Boston Bypass Road can be accessed via Exit 18 on I-93. This pilot program is being launched following approval by the Massachusetts Environment Policy Act (MEPA) office which issued an Advisory Opinion at the request of MassDOT.
The full traffic pattern changes that will be implemented 24/7 through this pilot program include allowing unrestricted eastbound travel on the South Boston Bypass Road between I-93 Frontage Road and Cypher Street/Richards Street and allowing unrestricted travel in both directions of the South Boston Bypass Road between Cypher Street/Richards Street and West Service Road. Additionally, access to the I-93 HOV lane from the following areas leading to Logan International Airport will also be unrestricted: the I-93 northbound mainline, I-93 northbound Frontage Road, and Kneeland Street/Lincoln Street.
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.”
In the Boston area housing market, there’s no longer an upside to downsizing for many empty nesters.
LET ME FIRST APOLOGIZE for any part my wife and I may be playing in worsening the Massachusetts housing shortage. Our youngest child has a freshly minted college diploma and a job. That officially makes us empty nesters, although our golden doodle might object to the description. After more than 20 years at the same address in Plymouth, we’re theoretically in a position to downsize, to ditch the drudgery of yardwork and upkeep for a simpler life governed by condo association rules. We’ve built up a pile of equity. Our 120-year-old house sits on a corner lot in a “desirable” part of Plymouth, about two blocks off the ocean. It’s updated and spacious, ideal for a growing family stretching at the seams.
HANOVER – Representatives from the South Shore Chamber of Commerce brought their vision of the region’s economic future to Hanover Wednesday night.
Town officials and the Massachusetts Housing Partnership arranged the presentation so the chamber’s efforts to spur economic development could be discussed. The event was held at the John Curtis Free Library
“Our entire 2030 South Shore economic plan looks at attracting more businesses and a broader mix of businesses than we’ve had in the past,” South Shore Chamber President and CEO Peter Forman said. “What we are looking at is: What does it take to attract those businesses?”
Business leaders on the South Shore are starting to wage war on the big-lot zoning that’s so common in many of their towns.
The South Shore Chamber of Commerce Thursday issued a housing agenda aimed at building dense housing at or near train stations and ferry docks, retail centers, even underused office parks.
Chamber chief executive Peter Forman tells me the organization needs to expand beyond its typical bread-and-butter work of hosting events and promoting commercial development. Getting more housing, particularly in walkable neighborhoods, is crucial to recruiting younger workers and keeping talented longtime residents around. Towns will suffer, Forman says, if they cling to the old way of doing business: the one-acre homes and the resistance to multifamily projects, particularly those that mean more kids.
For Rockland Trust chief executive Chris Oddleifson, who is helping lead the chamber’s effort, the problem hit home last year when his bank (which sponsors this newsletter) was recruiting an executive from Texas for a key position who ended up walking away from the offer. The reason? The high cost of housing in the area.
The chamber can’t change zoning rules, of course, and it’s not a housing developer. But the organization can champion policies at the State House, and individual projects back home. It’s one of the state’s biggest business groups. Its leaders have a loud voice, a voice they’re not afraid to use.
Jon Chesto can be reached at email@example.com and on Twitter @jonchesto.
By Jon Chesto, The Boston Globe
Published on September 21, 2017
South Shore Chamber of Commerce president and CEO Peter Forman said the area has been ‘a bit behind’ other regions in finding ways to attract younger workers and families.The Chamber is releasing a “Housing 2017” report on Sept. 21.
QUINCY – The South Shore is struggling to attract young professionals and young families, and the obstacles include a shortage of the kinds of housing they’re looking for, and not enough affordable places to live.
That’s one of the main points of a “Housing 2017” report that’s being released Thursday morning by the South Shore Chamber of Commerce.
The report – part of the Chamber’s “South Shore 2030” study – will be shared with business leaders at a Chamber breakfast at Lombardo’s in Randolph.
“The South Shore has a more serious challenge than other parts of the Boston area,” Chamber president and CEO Peter Forman said in a Patriot Ledger interview. “If the region is going to be serious about competing economically, we’ve got to be serious about what it takes to do that, and that includes housing.”
When a roomful of developers and business owners gather to talk about shopping malls, you’d expect them to discuss changing shopper habits, and the comparative attractions of enclosed and open malls.
And a group of 40 did Tuesday morning, Aug. 8 at the Doubletree Hilton hotel in Rockland during a South Shore Chamber of Commerce session on “The Future of Malls.” But they talked about other things even more – town zoning bylaws, malls as “destination places,” and the South Shore’s graying work force and shortage of affordable housing.
South Shore Chamber president and CEO Peter Forman, mall developers and a couple of town planners agreed that all those issues are big parts of any effort to keep the area’s overall economy healthy and growing – not just the malls.
“We may have a great market down here,” Forman said. “But if we’re 11th on the list of 10 (for development), we lose.”