Lowell City Council Meeting: January 24, 2017
Upcoming Meeting Cancellations
Council cancels meetings during February and April school vacation weeks (February 21 and April 18).
Winn Development Housing Report
In response to an earlier motion. Winn Development as 530 residential units in downtown Lowell. 79 percent of them are market rate. 9 percent are reserved for families of four making not more than $71,000 per year. City Manager says report shows people are attracted to downtown and are willing to pay attractive rent to live there. Councilor Belanger questions Winn’s need to obtain tax credits to build new units. He points to several other developers in Lowell that are constructing residential units downtown without needed tax credits. Asks for more clarification for the need for tax credits in light of other developers not needing them.
Councilor Samaras, request City Manager work with State delegation and Registry of Motor Vehicles to establish a kiosk in Lowell that will allow citizens to renew licenses.
Councilor Samaras, request City Manager have proper department paint the base of the water tower on Beacon Street.
Councilor Leahy, request City Manager meet with DPW and school officials to establish an action plan regarding heating and air conditioning in the schools. Explains that there were problems with heat at Lowell High and other schools, so we should look at other options, like perhaps a private company that might have more success.
Councilors Leahy and Samaras, request City Manager work with DPD to provide and economic development plan for the Cabot/Market Street area, specifically around former Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union complex. City Manager says Jeanne D’Arc contacted him this week to arrange a meeting to update him on JDCU’s plans for that area. After that, the City Manager will give the council and update.
Councilors Leahy and Samaras, request City Manager report on status of the stone building located on the corner of Rock and Mt. Vernon Streets.
Councilors Leahy and Samaras, request City Manager have Traffic Engineer explore feasibility of a 4-way stop sign at the intersection of Moody and Aiken Streets.
Councilors Leahy and Samaras, request City Manager have DPW repair parking lot at the Bartlett School.
Councilors Leahy and Elliott, request City Manager provide City Council with up to date reports and minutes of all meetings pertaining to the construction of the new high school. Leahy explains councilors received a batch of information last night which was helpful, but sometimes councilors get unexpected questions so it’s helpful to have the most up-to-date information.
Councilor Leary, request City Manager provide an update status for the 2 for Lowell Loan program; report to include the current funding sources, and review the feasibility of the DPD to reengage in funding options.
Councilor Leary, request City Manager City Mgr. provide a report regarding the building status located on 156 Wilder Street.
Mayor Kennedy, request City Council refer the Lowell House proposal to add a residential component to the Downtown Redevelopment Subcommittee for report and recommendation to the full City Council. Mayor explains he recently had a discussion with representatives of Lowell House. He recalls having discussion about the same proposal two years ago. He thinks best way to address this is to have Lowell House make a presentation to a subcommittee and let the council make a decision one way or another, rather than dragging it out further. Councilor Elliott asks if a proposal has formally been presented to the city or has it just been a concept being discussed? City Manager says Lowell House just did submit a proposal, but he thinks the subcommittee route is a good option because it will give him a sense of how the council feels about the plan. The plan has been shared with the city manager, not formally filed. Councilor Mercier says quite a while ago she was invited to Lowell House to be briefed on their plans. She was very impressed and feels what they want to do is greatly needed in the city. Motion passes.
Meeting adjourns at 7:29 pm.