SLV's proposal versus Powder House Lane
We believe that the project at Powder House Lane is vastly superior to the project proposed on top of Shingle Place Hill by SLV. Here's a short comparison of the two properties. For more information on SLV's proposal, please check out the SLV tab on this website.
SLV plans to blast off the top and one side of Shingle Hill to construct a steep, narrow, curving driveway almost a half mile long, inhibiting entry byambulances, trucks and the disabled. SLV itself describes the project as “less safe.” The site, surrounded by conservation land, isolates residents from the rest of Manchester.
NSCDC intends to purchase an existing multifamily complex in the heart of the town. The property is in excellent condition and needs little renovation. The purchase poses no environmental risks. The project integrates people of all incomes in Manchester’s center.
SLV has provided three different site plans without explaining thedifferences between them. Each plan entails monumental engineering for 157 units and 226 cars, with rampart-like retaining walls towering 65 feet over School Street. When the noise and dust settle in 2025 or later, 30-35 “affordable” units would be available, priced for people earning 80 per cent of area median income or more. The original plan cost $70 million; the most recent plan’s price tag looks higher. SLV’s designs, finances, insurance and even legal documents are murky and ever-changing. Yet SLV wants theSelectmen to commit to it.
NSCDC intends to make 29 existing units permanently affordable under State law. These brick buildings behind Seaside Cycle are fully three-dimensional. NSCDC’s project would add about the same number of affordable units as SLV’s, but put no additional cars on our streets and no further burden on our infrastructure. The rents are affordable to people earning around 50 percent of area median income. The project costs $3.9 million, and will likely close, fully financed, within six weeks.
SLV is in business to earn a return for itself and its investors. It is a new venture which has not completed similar multifamily developments. SLV is unabashed in its pursuit of profit. NSCDC is a Salem-based non-profit serving low- and moderate-income people on the North Shore. Its mission is to ensure that all people have a safe, affordable place to call home. Over its 40-year history, NSCDC has built and acquired more than 400 apartment units. Preserving Powder House Lane as permanently and truly affordable is part of its mission. It’s also completely consistent with our local Housing Production Plan.