NASHUA - Nashua Mayor Jim Donchess has sponsored a resolution aimed at reinvesting the citys estimated $500,000 windfall from the Clocktower Place Apartments into riverfront improvements, with an eye toward attracting more waterfront development and drawing residents to new amenities.
It seems to me it makes sense to devote this unexpected revenue to riverwalk enhancements so we can encourage more riverfront development, the mayor told aldermen Tuesday when he presented his bill to create a special fund to invest the $500,000.
The proposed resolution, R-16-029, would establish an expendable trust fund to finance improvements to the citys riverwalk.
The unexpected cash comes following a promise by Clocktower Housing Associates Partnership to give the city at least $500,000 in exchange for the city allowing the owner of the Millyard apartment complex to restructure its debt. The city obtained two federal housing loans on behalf of the developers, which were used to help subsidize the conversion of the former mill into housing roughly three decades ago. The $500,000 will become available to the city once the refinancing deal closes on June 30.
Im proposing we use this $500,000 of unexpected revenue ... for the purposes of further enhancing the riverwalk or waterfront, Donchess explained.
If we re-invest money that we derive from these projects into the very valuable asset that we have - that is, the Nashua River - I think in the long run we could stimulate more revenues, he added.
The mayor offered examples of the types of projects the money could help stimulate.
We are looking at the Millyard and areas around it to try to bring (in) residential development. But there are other areas east of Main Street where residential development could occur, Donchess said.
He said that could include large but unused industrial buildings on Spruce and East Pearl streets.
If we could enhance the Riverwalk that goes from the end of Spruce Street downriver to the library and potentially around the old former Telegraph building, we could create a very attractive amenity not only for developers, but also for people who live there, Donchess said.
Aldermen referred the bill to committee for review.
Kathryn Marchocki can be reached at 594-6589, kmarchocki@nashua