Saquatucket Harbor Landside Improvement Concept Plan Approved

KA_Harwich_Winter_Town hall offices_121615 (9)HARWICH – Harwich selectmen have unanimously approved a preliminary plan for proposed Saquatucket Harbor landside improvements.

The concept has been in the works for over a year and aims to bring a scenic boardwalk, harborside café, artisan vendor shacks, improved pedestrian access and other facelifts to the area.

Additionally, a structure estimated at 5000 square feet would house the town’s harbor department maintenance facility and provide rentable office space on the second floor.

The seven acre project would include the 2.2 acre former Downey property which is now under the town’s possession. The plans call for the buildings along Route 28 to be torn down and for additional parking to be created in their place.

Part of that property will also be devoted to a workshop and garage area and a consolidated ticket booth for passenger boats.

Harwich Harbormaster John Rendon said he thinks the improvements would attract both boaters and non-boaters alike.

“This plan will beautify the harbor and make it more welcoming,” he said.

Rendon said the project’s bid will be put out this year and, once one is secured, its committee will propose funding at next year’s town meeting.

Potential roadblocks could be found on the land in question, however. Rendon said much of the wetlands on the property would have to be worked around.

Additionally, the east parking lot is a state public access facility, a heavily used lot. That won’t be touched, Rendon said.

If the funding is approved at next May’s town meeting, Rendon said he hopes construction would follow that same year.

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