Affordable Housing Trust Closes In On $2.75 Million Lot On Bartlett Road

The Nantucket Affordable Housing Trust is closing in on a $2.75 million deal to purchase a nearly vacant three-quarter-acre lot at 12 and 12R Bartlett Road for affordable housing construction.

A purchase-and-sale agreement will be voted on by the members of the Trust next Tuesday. Once signed, the Trust would be expected to close on the property in early 2022. The seller is an LLC known as “Bear Vault” that is registered to Texas resident Margaret Holland.

“This property came to us through the owner’s representative and we understand the owner has a desire to see the parcel, understanding the challenges of year-round housing, go toward that purpose,” said Tucker Holland (no relation), Nantucket’s municipal housing director. “We were pleased they thought to come to the Trust and we were able to work out a mutually agreeable deal. The way it fits into the overall plan? It’s part of our scattered site, moderate intensity development plan around rental housing to serve a variety of income levels.”

Attorney Kevin Dale, who is representing the buyer, declined to comment until a purchase and sale agreement is signed, except to say the negotiations were ongoing.

There is no formal plan to develop the site yet, but Holland said given the existing zoning, the Trust could build up to 12 units at the location, which currently is vacant with the exception of an old garage structure.

“It certainly seems like a good location,” Holland said. “It’s a year-round neighborhood in that vicinity, the proximity to the schools, goods and services, it checked a lot of boxes on the criteria that the Neighborhood First Advisory Committee set out.”

If the Trust manages to close the deal, it would be the latest property acquired by the town for affordable housing purposes, following last month’s purchase of 8 White Street in Surfside, as well as the previous acquisitions of properties on Orange Street and Fairgrounds Road, as well as the former UMass property off Vesper Lane.

Our whole principle around the Neighborhood First monies is we want to be doing projects within local zoning,” Holland said. “All of these projects we’re intending to do at Fairgrounds, Umass, Bartlett Road, we want to do what can responsibly and appropriately within the local zoning, so it’s meeting the character of the neighbourhood as zoning allows for.”

Funding for the acquisition will come from the $7.5 million override approved by Town Meeting voters earlier this year for affordable housing initiatives, as well as the Community Preservation Committee, and residual funds from the Neighborhood First funding approved by Town Meeting three years ago. 

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