, Derry, New Hampshire

July 18, 2013

Woodmont developers continue to pitch project

By Julie Huss

---- — LONDONDERRY — Woodmont Commons developers continue to pitch their plans for the massive project proposed for the 600-plus-acre site.

For many months, Planning Board officials have heard details about the proposed multi-use development and discussions will continue for months to come.

It’s almost a given that Woodmont is on the board’s agenda as there are so many components to the large-scale project.

Another formal review discussion was held last week.

At past meetings, details have focused on utilities, traffic impact, town services and financial information about Woodmont.

There is always a steady stream of residents who come out to meetings to stay informed and voice their opinions.

Keeping information available to the public is key, one resident said.

Tranquil Drive resident John Wilson said he wants town officials to make sure everyone knows what’s going on.

“As the draft evolves, could we get it on the website so the public can study that as it’s going on?” he asked officials.

He said the town will have months to peruse the Woodmont information and he wants the public to have the same opportunity.

“You guys have months to deal with this,” Wilson said. “The people in town will have how long?”

Planning Board Chairman Art Rugg said Woodmont is a lengthy discussion and a “work in progress.”

Wilson just wants to keep as much information in the public as possible.

“At least put a timeline plan, where we are today, what’s going to happen,” Wilson said. “It’s a road map, how we get there from here. There’s a lot of rough road from here to the end.”

Woodmont Commons is proposed by Michael Kettenbach and Pillsbury Realty Development.

Pillsbury purchased the Woodmont Orchards property two years ago for $7 million. The project, as proposed, would be completed in phases over 20 years.

The vision to create Woodmont began in 1997 when Londonderry’s master plan included the possibility of creating a new village concept in town, combining businesses, streetscapes, gardens, community centers, hotels and homes.

Since then, the town passed its Planned Urban Development ordinance, outlining regulations for new developments that are separate from current land use rules.

The next discussion is scheduled for Aug. 14 at the Planning Board meeting.