The Brown School will be closing soon. This fact has been known for over a year.
A year in which plenty of time has been spent in hatching plans for this property.
The Mayor would like to turn this land, since it’s city property, into a secure, affordable housing plot – one in which no dangerous “loopholes” that excuse a developer to sell them at full price can happen. As many may not know, the 40B law allows damaging massive housing to bypass local zoning and even the say of the local community. The one-saving grace, is a town or city that can attain an inventory of 10% in affordable housing units.
Newburyport is not even close and because of our red hot real estate; becoming ever in danger of losing what we have now!
But old families in town with fingers in our financial institutions are seeing this land with large $$$ in their eyes. If the land is sold, multi-million dollar units can be built in the hottest part of this boomtown: the South End.
This kind of skullduggery used to be done in the Old Newburyport – secret deals and voila, before anyone knew about it – “arrangements” had been made. The end result is a small handful of well-connected individuals and the banks making out like bandits and the general public and the hard-pressed taxpayer being either left out in the cold or holding the expensive consequence.
They DON’T want the Brown School building preserved with adaptive reuse. It would get in the way of million-plus homes.
And ESPECIALLY they don’t want the South End Neighbors having any connection or say on this property.
That is why I was very alarmed when a playground originally paid for by private funds and in which it could have been renovated with more private donations from the neighbors; was so quickly and swiftly removed.
Tomorrow night, a group of neighbors will assemble on how to get this playground restored. What I am more interested is the “future” plans for this land and playground.
That meeting will be on the 25th in City Hall at 7:00 PM.
I’m planning on bringing my camera then, and watching closely, reading between the lines and above all listening intently.
What is going on behind the scenes that we don’t know about – could kill us the taxpayer!