Temple citizens experienced an chance to weigh in on suggested improvements to town lands, including talks about relocating the freeway section, at a general public forum Thursday night, some of which are showcased on the 2021 warrant.

The tips arrived from the Temple Land Use Committee, which was fashioned at the 2020 Town Assembly to analyze city attributes and advocate variations to their administration. The committee produced a record of tips in December.

20-one people today attended the community forum, and the committee is scheduling another dialogue session for Could, prior to City Assembly on June 12.

A new home for the Freeway Division

Relocating the Freeway Section from its existing locale in the middle of city garnered most of the night’s consideration. The recent Freeway Department occupies an acre powering the City Hall and the library. Fringed by non-public house and conservation land, there is no location to extend on web-site, Land Use Committee chair Tim Fiske stated, and security hazards and parking difficulties are piling up – not to point out a 45 calendar year-aged septic program that will require relocation ahead of far too prolonged.

Moving the Freeway Office could allow for additional parking downtown, with no the recent threat of town motor vehicles finding blocked in or hitting parked autos, he mentioned, and a two acre web-site would allow the Highway Department to maintain far more of their components in the identical room, instead than spread all over town. The present Freeway Office setting up, the moment vacated, could be utilized for municipal places of work, or to property a museum for the Historical Culture, Fiske stated, or the place could be used for library and Town Hall wants. The existing dialogue is a transfer to be proactive about the difficulty instead than waiting around until finally the problem is a lot more dire, committee Vice Chair Christine Robidoux mentioned.

A two-and-a-fifty percent-acre town-owned parcel regarded as the Holt property, which sits throughout Route 45 from the Hearth Station is the ideal locale for a new Highway Section of a few the Land Use Committee investigated, Fiske mentioned. The city acquired the Holt house in 2015 because of to unpaid taxes, Fiske stated. It abuts the 64-acre Skladany house, town land that is less appropriate for developing, but fantastic for car or truck or materials storage if even more expansion was ever required, he stated.

Article 9 on this year’s warrant is the to start with action of transferring the Freeway Office to the Holt and Skladany properties. It asks voters to spend $45,000 on engineering, survey, and architectural operate to estimate expenditures, funding, timing, and aesthetics of the undertaking. Fiske believed it would finally price amongst $500,000 and $800,000 to create out the place to what they necessary, he mentioned, and they could preserve by delivering a lot of the labor by themselves. Nearby Mason lately expended $330,000 on a similar task, he reported.

Formally conserving open area downtown

Report 12 on the 2021 warrant asks voters to place a conservation easement on 16.44 acres of city-owned land at the junction of Route 45 and Hadley Freeway, like historical Schoolhouse 6. The transfer would “once and for all make sure it is safeguarded in perpetuity as an open up place ideal in the centre of town,” Conservation Fee Chair Scott Hecker explained. Most of the impacted land is a steep, grassy discipline with wetland patches, he stated. The Historical Culture has hardly ever proposed growing the schoolhouse alone, Historical Culture President Honey Hastings reported, so the post would not influence their initiatives to create a museum in city. There is added un-conserved town land on the parcel that could nonetheless be utilized, she explained. Committee member George Willard cast the lone vote from the advice for the reason that he believed the spot was conserved plenty of as-is with out formalizing it, Robidoux reported. Willard was unable to show up at Thursday’s forum.

Offering off house heaps and preserving a trailhead

Temple has obtained four houses at the corner of Aged Peterborough Highway and Route 45 in excess of the yrs owing to unpaid taxes, Fiske claimed, and the Land Use Committee endorses the town market them off to get them again on the tax rolls. “We’ve lost likely close to $150,000 in taxes above the yrs,” he reported of the two southernmost parcels, which the town has held for about 25 several years.

Short article 11 on this year’s warrant would allocate $7,000 to execute two great deal line changes to produce and offer two single household loads, retaining a smaller portion of land as a conservation easement and trailhead.

The southernmost, smallest parcel connects conservation land to the south to Route 45, Fiske mentioned, and the committee considered it would be superior for the town to keep a 50-foot swath of that parcel as a ideal-of-way so there was no issue around no matter if folks experienced a appropriate to cross it. Hikers would nevertheless have to have to stroll a few hundred ft up Route 45 to obtain conservation land to the east, Fiske reported.

Every of the houses are about 4 acres in measurement, and the committee suggests combining the two northern lots to market as an 8-acre solitary home good deal, and the two southern lots to a 7-acre whole lot, the bigger dimensions creating them far more desirable and saleable. Adjacent landowners to a single of the tracts have expressed curiosity in obtaining it, Fiske claimed.

Not involved in the warrant are tips that the city give an unusable 50 percent acre of house along the highway to the point out, take up a 1.35 acre “orphan lot” to the adjacent parcel housing the Hearth Department as each parcels are way too compact to do nearly anything with on their have, and retain the 18.45 acre parcel following to Temple Elementary Faculty for foreseeable future city takes advantage of, these types of as photo voltaic panels or very affordable housing. 

A need for community enter

Resident Nicole Concordia expressed disappointment that the committee hadn’t produced extra effort and hard work to check with the townspeople in advance of they delivered their recommendations to the Find Board. “It just felt really quickly,” she reported, and that the only opportunity resident enter at this point would be to change the warrant throughout Town Meeting. The committee agreed to program a second general public forum in May.

Temple inhabitants are also currently being requested to vote on improvements to the town’s zoning ordinance on March 9. The variations have an effect on accessory dwelling unit restrictions and planned household developments.