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Local News

March 15, 2012

Truck stop not feasible for DPW garage

AMESBURY — A suggestion to move the town's public works garage to the former truck-stop property on Route 150 isn't feasible, because there are other plans for the site that could possibly include a hotel, the mayor said this week.

Former Municipal Councilor Alison Lindstrom recently touted the Route 150 former truck-stop site, which has been owned by the town for a decade, for the new home of the public works garage,

The Municipal Council is still mulling whether to approve an $8 million bond for the public works project, which is being proposed for South Hunt Road. A vote is expected at the council's April 10 meeting at the earliest.

"It's a desirable site for commercial development," Mayor Thatcher Kezer said. "I would rather have commercial development that benefits from high visibility than a DPW ... possibly for another hotel."

There's already one hotel in Amesbury, Fairfield Inn on Clarks Road. A second hotel on Elm Street near Carriagetown Marketplace is making its way through the Planning Board.

Town planner Nipun Jain said hotel developers are working to address the final recommendations by the Planning Board's consultant.

The truck stop was one of 26 sites considered for the garage by the consulting firm, Pace Corps. The old truck stop was not recommended because of its proximity to residents.

The site has been used as the town's snow dump for years, and nearby residents of Woodridge Lane have complained to officials about the constant noise from dump trucks all night.

Lindstrom said plans for a hotel at the site are nothing new.

"(Kezer) said that five years ago," Lindstrom said.

Building the public works garage on the Route 150 site wouldn't hinder the commercial development, but help it, since building a public works garage would attract developers, she said.

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