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April 17. 2013 10:26PM

Nashua set to clear path for parkway

NASHUA - Demolition is about to take place to clear a path for the future Broad Street Parkway.

As crews begin working within the wetland buffer of the Nashua River and canal, other work will be taking place elsewhere in the city to prepare for the construction of the 1.8-mile roadway that will provide another crossing over the river.

City officials have been presented with a proposed $61,500 contract to demolish a single-story commercial building at 44 Broad St., which lies in the path of the parkway.

The former occupants of the retail building have been aware of the potential demolition for several years, prompting several of the businesses to relocate in 2012.

The site at 44 Broad St., which was taken by eminent domain, was previously occupied by Mayhem Ink, Aidan James Salon, Wizard Cycles and Gregory J. Fine Flooring and Design.

Demolition of the property is expected to take place in the coming weeks. According to a memo to Mayor Donnalee Lozeau, the proposed contractual cost to raze the building is significantly less than originally expected.

"The engineer's estimate for this project was $132,000," says the memo. Francesco Demolition Inc. of Duxbury, Mass., is being recommended for the work.

A separate piece of property, the city's old Boiler House building, was razed last summer as part of the Broad Street Parkway project.

In the midst of clearing a pathway for the new road, city officials have been in discussions about what to do with the existing Tree Streets neighborhood to make it more appealing to motorists exiting the parkway.

"It is also the key for people coming off the Broad Street Parkway. It is a really important piece," Alderman Arthur Craffey said of the Tree Streets community.

It is important to start planning redevelopment for this area now, before the parkway is built, Craffey said this week, joining some of his fellow aldermen in supporting the construction of clustered homes in the vicinity of Stevens, Everett and Pine streets just west of Gate City Fence.

At least three aldermen favored placing a community pool in that area to accommodate some of the less wealthy families in the city. Meanwhile, the mayor said there are preliminary plans to possibly create a community garden in the general vicinity as well.

By the end of the year, major construction of the parkway will be under way, with the first segment of roadway construction expected to begin this summer. The estimated completion date is the end of 2014.

Hayner Swanson Inc. of Nashua, along with Fay, Spofford and Thorndike, are creating the engineering design for the Broad Street Parkway from the Broad Street/Blue Hill Avenue intersection to Pine Street/Central Street.

The ultimate goal of the project is to connect Broad Street to the downtown area by allowing motorists to bypass Amherst Street via another crossing of the Nashua River, possibly attracting more business and people to the Millyard Technology Park.

The Broad Street Parkway is currently the largest municipally managed project in New Hampshire, Lozeau said earlier.

The parkway is an $82 million road project, with a portion of that price tag being spent before it was approved by the city in 2008. The estimated cost to complete the roadway is about $68 million, with $37.5 million being paid by the city and the rest through federal funds.

khoughton@newstote.com



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