By Alex Malm
The Heritage Commission reviewed an application for a site plan for the proposed 264 dwelling unit multi-family residential development with associated parking and amenities at Governor Bell Drive and Michels Way, which is known as the Woodmont Commons, during their Jan. 26 meeting.
It was explained by Mark Seck, Vice President of Development from Wood Partners East Acquisitions, LLC, that in addition to just being developers, they are also the general contractor, and property manager, of their projects in New England, which he says is important.
Seck explained they would have a mix of units ranging from one bedroom to three bedroom units. It will also feature a state-of-the-art fitness center, resident lounges, tech lounge, and a courtyard.
He added they would have 338 parking spaces and private garage bays for a total of 400 parking spaces.
“We have ample onsite parking along with bike storage,” said Seck.
Seck stated they will also have ample electric vehicle parking spaces on surface parking and in the garage.
Seck noted they would have a closed drainage system and they would have municipal water and sewer for the complex.
It was explained by Seck that all the buildings have good setbacks from the sidewalks, which will allow them flexibility for their landscaping plan.
“We’re not tight to the sidewalk edge at all,” said Seck.
It was noted by Seck they made informal submissions to the Conservation Commission and the Planning Board and are waiting for peer review and town comments.
Town Council Liaison, Jim Butler, said his biggest concern was that without mixing the materials it starts to become stale.
He noted that he would like to see different materials used, along with things like shutters. He added that it provides for a “soft feeling” to the overall complex. “We’re trying to get a design that is soft,” said Butler. Seck said they want to have something appealing, while also balancing the financial feasibility of a project. “We want our buildings to look really amazing,” said Seck. Chairman, Krystopher Kenney, pointed out that there are other residents in Londonderry, not just the ones who live in the building that will be looking at it. He added that the more they can match with the theme or the traditional look of the neighborhood the better.
At the Planning Board meeting, Ex-Officio, Deb Paul, also noted that she had concerns about the look of the proposal.
“With the look, it really lacks character. Everything is just the same,” said Paul.
It was pointed out by Town Manager, Mike Malaguti, that it’s “pretty vague” for the PUD master plan for Woodmont noting there is limited guidance for the architects.
Butler provided Seck with some examples of other projects their company completed that he thinks would make sense for the one in Londonderry.
Seck said they would be willing to look at making some adjustments to the design. They agreed to come back to the Heritage Commission during a future meeting.