At last week’s Board of Selectmen meeting, town manager Richard Montuori formally advised the board that Houston-based Hanover Co. has applied to MassHousing for a project eligibility letter in regards to its proposal for a 300-unit 40B rental housing development on 30 +/- acres at Ames Pond.
In turn, MassHousing sent the town a letter indicating that it had received the application and giving Tewksbury until Oct. 13 to return input from Tewksbury boards and committees, officials and interested parties, including residents.
Areas the agency will evaluate — and thus areas where it may be fruitful to provide feedback — include the proposed site and design concept, financial feasibility and the appropriateness of the project in relation to local housing needs and strategies.
The project proposal includes five, four-story residential buildings, with four of the buildings containing partial basements, facing Ames Pond.
Once Hanover receives that project eligibility letter, it will meet a requirement to file for a comprehensive permit under MGL Chapter 40B. This application will be made to the Tewksbury Zoning Board of Appeals, and a public hearing will be scheduled.
The public hearing process will most likely be conducted over a period of a few months and will address the project’s impact on the town. Tewksbury has retained Mark Bobrowski, a land-use attorney who specializes in Massachusetts 40B case law, to consult for the town as the process goes forward. Bobrowski gave the BoS and residents a sobering assessment of the likelihood of derailing the project.