NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Local News

December 31, 2012

Looking ahead to 2013

(Continued)

It is a vacuum-based system, suggesting that the entire line must be in good health to ensure that pressure is maintained.

Mayor Donna Holaday has said city engineers are monitoring the situation, but mishaps could be costly. Municipal leaders note that houses under duress can be disconnected so the rest of the system is not threatened.

Your Scribe is a giddy optimist, though, and notes the city dodged a bullet in 2012 when its crumbling clearwell (municipal water source) was replaced without incident. Perhaps the challenges on the island can be avoided as well.)

Municipal elections: Election for city office in 2013 will likely bring out more candidates than did the local election of 2011.

In that ballot, all six ward councilors ran unopposed, as did Holaday.

But recent political battles, including the divisive fight over the LHD, will likely prompt more citizens to run for office.

Some City Hall insiders say if the LHD had been decided by the voters rather than the City Council, it would have passed.

Could aspirants run as “pro-LHD” candidates and attempt to mold building regulations in the future?

Construction on Storey Avenue: Tropic Star LLC, a New Hampshire development company, in 2012 made an effort to have land on Storey Avenue rezoned so it could accommodate a possible CVS store and a bank branch.

The rezoning request did not pass, and city officials say the idea can be revisited if the proposal is different. It’s possible that Tropic Star will come back with a new version of its original plan.

Parking: Strategy to improve parking opportunities in the downtown has been debated here since the advent of the Edsel.

But with major new projects slated for the intersection of Green and Merrimac streets, the subject will likely be brought up again.

The NRA is considering shops and restaurants on its nearby property, in addition to condominium units. The owner of the building that houses the departed Davis Auto Parts is planning a restaurant with more than 400 seats.

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