Project Introduction

The City of Nashua Community Development Division and the Nashua City Planning Board have initiated a planning process to develop a master plan for the East Hollis Street Area. The East Hollis Street Area is defined as the land area west to east from Spruce Street to the Merrimack River, and north to south from the Nashua River to Bowers Street. The Plan shall serve to set the overall goals, policies, programs, and implementation strategies for any future redevelopment of this important area of the City. The East Hollis Street Plan is an area plan that would be adopted as an update to the Nashua 2000 Master Plan, which is the comprehensive plan for the City of Nashua.

Several Conditions Providing Impetus
Several conditions provide the impetus for the updated Plan. First, the Nashua 2000 Master Plan notes that the East Hollis Street Area merits further study due to changing development patterns. East Hollis Street serves as one of the main east/west traffic corridors for the City and experiences significant traffic delays. The area hosts a diverse mix of land uses including heavy and light industrial; single and multi-family residential; and new commercial development. Residential areas are tucked between commercial and industrial development, and experience traffic impacts. The area’s longstanding industrial base is being eroded for other land uses. And the existing railroad corridors and proximity to 2 major rivers present many opportunities for new parks and trails. Second, the State of New Hampshire is considering extending commuter rail from Lowell to Nashua, and a station has been proposed near the confluence of railroad tracks in the area. If transit stations are well-planned and integrated within an area, they can provide substantial stimulus to revitalize that area. Thus, a more comprehensive study of potential station locations and impacts, as well as the potential for transit to support reinvestment in the area, is needed.

Public Participation
Public participation is key to the creation of a vision for this complex and diverse area. The final plan will be the vision that the residents, businesses and other leaders of the community share for the future. The Community Development Division has engaged a consultant, Von Grossman and Company, to facilitate the development of the Plan. The process will occur over six months, from April to October 2003. Numerous stakeholders meetings will be held in the initial stages of the project. The Nashua City Planning Board has appointed a Steering Committee, which will function as a subcommittee to the Planning Board, to provide input and review consultant findings through six scheduled committee meetings. Three public workshops will be held at Spartans Hall, 73 EastHollis Street, for the consultant to solicit broader public input from area residents, business owners, and other constituents, please see the workshop and meeting schedule. The consultant and staff have outlined a sequential process that will include: Inventory and Existing Conditions; Station Program and Location Alternatives; Development and Land Use Goals, Land Use Alternatives, and Recommended Strategy; Land Use and Transportation Plans; and Implementation Strategy.