DerryNews.com, Derry, New Hampshire

Derry

March 27, 2014

Councilors put Derry real estate on goal list

DERRY — Town-owned real estate continues to make the Town Council agenda and there are many ideas on what should be done with some vacant downtown land.

Councilors began talking about town property months ago and made the discussion a priority and goal for the year ahead.

At a meeting March 18, one empty downtown parcel took center stage when it came to figuring out ways to make the land useful and profitable.

Former oil company properties on Central and Abbot Courts have been a longstanding topic when it comes to helping Broadway prosper through potential redevelopment plans.

The properties were historically used for fuel storage and distribution activities dating back to the 1990s and many have worked on ideas to make that area good for Derry.

Some want a park, some want to see retail or open space. Some say the downtown needs more parking. Others someday envision a new West Broadway fire station.

Town Councilor Tom Cardon said he would love to see a park on Broadway.

“We need a draw for the downtown,” he said. “A park is a perfect project to put down there. We could have an ice skating rink in the winter.”

But Town Councilor Al Dimmock said a park would not be a good fit as it would not generate any money for the town.

“I say we sell it and get it back on the tax rolls,” Dimmock said.

Town Councilor Phyllis Katsakiores liked both the park and the parking lot plans.

“I’m just up in the air on this whole thing,” she said.

There is also a possibility that someday West Broadway will again need a fire station.

Several years ago when the West Broadway station, now Halligan Tavern, closed, the town considered a future station on that end of town, but no plans went forward.

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