Harbor Village Project Gets Go-Ahead

The Baker Administration this morning announced that the Harbor Village project, a mixed-use development planned for Gloucester’s Main Street, will receive funding from the Department of Housing and Community Development clearing the way for construction to begin in early 2020.

The project, a partnership between Action Inc. and Salem’s North Shore Community Development Coalition,  will consist of thirty (30) residential rental units and 2,500 square feet of ground-floor commercial space in a desirable location in downtown Gloucester.  All thirty of the apartments, a mix of 1-, 2- and 3-bed units located at the former Cameron’s Restaurant, will be set aside as affordable housing. The site will also include a property management office, bike storage, a small gallery space, and 30 off-street parking spaces.

“This project has been more than five years in the making,” said Peggy Hegarty-Steck, Action Inc.’s Executive Director, “and we are so thrilled to receive the necessary funding to move ahead with construction. Today is a big win for Gloucester!”

“There is a huge need for affordable housing in this community.” Continued Hegarty-Steck. “We are so grateful to the Mayor for her leadership on, and support for, this vital project. Big thanks to all of the City staff, neighbors, community partners, and local leaders who helped us get to “yes” on this project.”

Action Inc.’s triennial Community Needs Assessment, and the City’s recent Housing Needs Assessment have both shown that the need for affordable housing of the most pressing issues facing local residents. Recent data shows that more than a third of Gloucester residents are cost-burdened, spending at least 35 percent of their monthly income on housing costs, while rents have risen significantly in recent years. In addition, wait times for family housing at the Gloucester Housing Authority is now around 4 years.

As Harbor Village will be new construction, all existing structures will be demolished to make way for a four-story structure, consisting of a three-story wood-framed residential building over a steel/concrete framed surface parking structure. A key component of the project is the use of high-efficiency building systems including windows, mechanical equipment, and plumbing fixtures.  The new building will seamlessly integrate into the downtown architectural landscape with such features as a brick façade and larger, more prominent commercial entrances on the ground level.

Now that funding approval has been provided by the state, construction is expected to begin in early 2020, with the building completed by summer 2021.

Joe McEvoy

Joe is Action Inc.'s Director of Planning and Development