Nate Whipple Highway project advances

Nate Whipple Highway project advances

CUMBERLAND – The Planning Board voted 5-3 last Wednesday in favor of a master plan from Four Horsemen Realty for a major mixed-use development at 10 Nate Whipple Highway. The board sent a favorable recommendation to the Zoning Board to provide relief for the project.

The proposal, a combination of homes and commercial space, would replace an assortment of older buildings on the former McLaughlin & Moran property, including the home of Conway Tours. Jim McKee and Terrapin Development are behind the proposal for the 8.3-acre property, which calls for a 12,000-square-foot, two-story commercial structure, a 24-unit apartment complex, and 40 condominiums.

Planning Board members Harry MacDonald, Kenneth Bush and Christopher Butler all opposed the proposal. A key point of contention was that the zoning ordinance calls for commercial space on the first floor and residential space on the second floor in this commercial zone, not in separate buildings as called for in plans.

Some board members were reluctant to move forward with the project since relief is needed from the Zoning Board to allow the uses in different buildings, said Director of Planning and Community Development Jonathan Stevens.

Board members said they were happy that a run-down property will serve a new purpose, said Stevens. He said the applicant has “quite a bit of work” ahead in providing expert witnesses on a number of issues, including traffic.