GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

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January 18, 2013

Developer adds $1.4M for work in Fort

The developers seeking a 101-room beachfront hotel are now kicking in an additional $1.4 million contribution to the city’s projected $7 million investment in offsite infrastructure improvements along Commercial Street and Fort Square.

The Beauport Gloucester Hotel project attorney John Cunningham announced the commitment during Wednesday night’s meeting of the City Council’s Planning and Development Committee, which, along with the Planning Board and the Conservation Commission, is working through the detailed plans subject primarily to fine tuning.

There are numerous problems to be solved — off-site parking and ownership Pavilion Beach, among them-— and those were discussed at a 90-minute committee update, the first of the new year in the official process. Much of the conversation turns ontechnical issues with advice coming to the city from multiple consulting firms that have been retained by the city.

Beauport Gloucester LLC had previously made a $600,000 payment to the city for infrastructure planning and design.

The hotel construction itself has been estimated to cost more than $20 million. Windover Construction, a Manchester-based builder and developer, was introduced as the building contractor if and when the project gains the needed permits and approvals.

The infrastructure contribution would be made in thirds as reimbursement, with $466,666.due at the time the building permit was issued, and an equal amount due six months thereafter and the final installment in exchange for the certificate of occupancy.

With a $3 million grant from the state MassWorks development agency confirmed last week, Mayor Carolyn Kirk announced a plan to complete the offsite infrastructure improvements — to the water, sewer and drainage systems — at an estimated price tag of $7.5 million.

“When taken together,” Kirk said in a memo to the council, the approach “provides the resources to rebuild the infrastructure which will benefit the businesses along Commercial Street, the residences in Fort Square, and support new growth and economic development for the city.”

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