City of Salem Massachusetts
Public Meeting Minutes
Board or Committee: Redevelopment Authority, Regular Meeting
Date and Time: Wednesday, October 8, 2008, at 6:00 p.m.
Meeting Location: Third Floor Conference Room, 120 Washington Street
Members Present: Conrad Baldini, Michael Connelly, Robert Mitnik, and Russell Vickers
Members Absent: Michael Brennan
Others Present: Economic Development Manager Tom Daniel
Recorder: Andrea Bray
Acting Chairperson Vickers calls the meeting to order.
Executive Director’s Report
Urban Land Institute: Daniel states that the Urban Land Institution’s Technical Assistance Panel visited Salem on September 23rd to consider the best use for the Church Street parking lot. He adds that the group spent the morning touring the city and holding intensive interviews with several groups. In the afternoon they met to discuss various alternatives for the lot, and then presented at a public forum at 5:30 that evening.
Daniel outlines the points that the ULI’s Technical Assistance Panel made during their presentation, which included:
· It doesn’t make sense to build a parking garage next to a parking garage.
· There hasn’t been a comprehensive parking study, and the city should undertake that.
· Various development scenarios were examined (office, commercial, residential) and they found that the most readily available use for the site would be in having a residential development.
· Some secondary recommendations will be included in the ULI’s report which should be available next month.
· The ULI thought that the entire Salem community, with its high level of engagement, was remarkable.
Vickers states that he was enlightened by their presentation when they proposed that the parcel should be used for something other than parking. He adds that the meeting was exciting and the Authority members should open their minds up as to how that lot should be used. In looking forward to the next step, Vickers stated that the Authority needs to decide how and who will undertake the parking study.
Old Town Hall: Daniel states that the city is getting estimates to bring the bathrooms in the basement up to code. He adds that Gordon College and the City are collaborating on a grant application to the Massachusetts Cultural Facilities Commission.
Haunted Happenings: Daniel states that the annual carnival on Derby Street will begin on October 17th and last for two weeks.
Old Salem Jail: Daniel states that NBV received the federal tax credits. NBV’s environmental consultant is doing some sampling and monitoring on the site. Additionally, he notes that NBV is moving toward the final construction estimate, which is due in the next two weeks. He says that he is holding October 21st open for a special SRA meeting, because there are a number of amendments to the land disposition agreement that must be reviewed and approved. He agrees to contact the members to finalize the date and time of the special meeting.
Small Project Review
1. 73 Lafayette Street (Beverly Cooperative Bank): Discussion and vote on proposed rooftop screening plans
Daniel states that this was approved by the DRB with the Surrey Beige color. He presents photos for the members to review. He states that the Beverly Cooperative Bank had issues with their contractor and they had many issues with the roof so they are coming back now to modify the screening.
Baldini: Motion to approve this design with the recommendation of the DRB, seconded by Mitnik. Passes 4-0.
2. 2 East India Square, Suite 119 (Rita’s Water Ice): Discussion and vote on proposed outdoor café seating
Daniel states that the owner wishes to add 3 tables and 6 chairs and the DRB approved the design. He adds that they also need to get approval by the Board of Health and Licensing Board.
Connelly: Motion to approve the design as recommended by the DRB Baldini. Passes 4-0.
Sign, Awning, and Lighting Review
3. 60 Washington Street (Dunkin’ Donuts): Discussion and vote on proposed signage
Daniel states that the new Dunkin’ Donuts will be in the old Courthouse Deli location, and the DRB pushed them to use the gold on black colors.
Mitnik: Motion to approve the design with the DRB recommendation, seconded by Connelly. Passes 4-0.
4. 24 New Derby Street, Units 1 and 2 (Artists’ Row): Discussion and vote on proposed banners
Daniel states that these are 2 banners that are that will be hung at either end of Artists’ Row. He adds that the DRB approved them, but the banners must be spelled correctly (Artists’).
Baldini: Motion to approve the design, seconded by Mitnik. Passes 4-0.
5. 281 Essex Street, Unit 3 (Body Empowered Wellness): Discussion and vote on proposed signage
Daniel states that this is a new fitness studio in the old Tompkins Furniture building and the DRB approved the design subject to the hardware being black.
Connelly: Motion to approve the design with the DRB’s recommendation, seconded by Mitnik. Passes 4-0.
Approval of Minutes – September 10, 2008 Meeting
Baldini: Motion to approve the minutes, seconded by Mitnik. Passes 3-0.
Voting members are Baldini, Connelly, and Mitnik.
Mitnik: Motion to adjourn, seconded by Connelly. Passes 4-0.
The meeting is adjourned at 6:20 PM.