Pittsburgh churches

Wanted abandonment for apartments near St. James Church

08/26/2020

LINCOLN – A Massachusetts-based developer is looking to build new apartment buildings on property currently owned by St. James Parish in Manville.

Before the parish can sell land for development, a series of paper streets crossing the St. James property will have to be formally abandoned. Paper streets are abandoned streets that can only be found on maps.

William Landry, attorney for Waltham-based developer Dakota Partners, said he’s working with attorney Rita Turcotte, representing St. James, on this issue, which he says is “part of the cleanup process” before a sale. or a construction. take place.

Speaking to city council on Monday, Dakota vice president of development Mark Pilotte said the company plans to build three apartment buildings of 24 units each for a total of 72 one-bedroom and two-bedroom apartments. bedrooms. Each building would have three floors.

Pilotte said the complex, proposed for land behind the church, would also include a clubhouse with a rental office, management office, grounds maintenance office, community hall, exercise room and a laundry room, as well as an outdoor play area for children.

He said the buildings would be designed in the same way as the ones the company builds in East Greenwich, with more of a ‘mill town’ feel in the materials used.

The land St. James hopes to sell is behind the parish building and currently consists of a parking lot and an existing building on Church Street that would be demolished.

Dakota is rehabilitating a series of factory buildings in Saylesville into apartments and hopes to begin construction of additional apartments there next year.

Pilotte said the first project on Industrial Circle is expected to be completed around December.

“We have received over 100 requests for 43 units, so there is a real need and a real demand for this,” he said. The project will have to go through the city planning process.

Landry said St. James and Dakota are requesting the surrender of certain unregistered rights of way on church property to make way for new construction.

He said there could be public rights associated with the street, which “would take an army of lawyers to figure out.” Instead, they hope to legally give up any public rights that may exist within the perimeter of the church.

The paper streets proposed for abandonment include portions of Church, Pine, Oak and Pond streets adjacent to St. James.

Speaking in a public comment, Butter Michael Joinville said he had no issues with development plans, but hoped any development would include repairs to crumbling streets.

“Every time I called the city to have the road serviced, they said it was private property and they shouldn’t even be there,” the Church Street resident said.

Lincoln Department of Public Works Director Michael Gagnon has requested that permanent easements be provided to provide access to the Joinville property and another neighboring property as a condition of abandonment.

He also requested that if any public infrastructure was discovered under any of the streets, the developer would be required to design around it or move it at their own expense and grant the city an easement for future maintenance.

City council agreed on Tuesday that the paper streets had “ceased to be of use to the public” and agreed to move the abandonment discussion to open court on September 15.

Councilor Ken Pichette withdrew from the vote as he sits on the St. James Finance Council.

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