Convenience store given final approval

NASHUA – The Planning Board has given final approval to a local development firm’s proposal to convert an old barn at 523 Broad St. into a convenience store.

The board endorsed Mile High Real Estate’s plan unanimously Thursday night, after project engineer Richard Maynard said a pedestrian safety plan is being developed for the site, which is next to the new Majestic Heights subdivision.

The board previously had backed the proposal conditionally, and asked the developer and the city’s Traffic Department to come up with a safety plan before the endorsement of the project became final.According to a memo from acting Traffic Superintendent Susan Klasen, Maynard’s firm will design safety crossings that satisfy the board’s concerns.

Klasen said the Division of Public Works has withdrawn a previous request to have a mid-block crossing directly in front of the store.

“Instead, we are asking that pedestrian crossings be provided at both the Hyannis Street and Majestic Avenue/Natick Street intersections (with Broad Street),” Klasen said in her memo.

She added that the sidewalk on the north side of Broad Street must be extended west to the westernmost driveway of the Nashua Baptist Church, across from Hyannis Street.

City officials agree, Klasen said, that the improvements Maynard’s firm will install “may provide better crossing opportunities for most, if not all, of the residents who live on the south side of Broad Street in neighborhoods near the proposed development.’’

Maynard told the board the improvements will include elongated splitter islands, similar to those at the Broad Street roundabout, which slow traffic down and add a higher dimension of safety for people using the crosswalks.

“It causes people to pay attention and to slow down,’’ Maynard said, adding that signs would be posted warning motorists to reduce their speeds as they approach the store.

The store will be located in an old barn, now an antique shop, on the site of the old Tamposi farmhouse, and will be called the Red Barn Store. The old farmhouse will be converted into office space.

Because Maynard’s firm will be designing and installing the safety improvements, the board removed an earlier stipulation requiring the developers to contribute $5,000 to the Traffic Department to pay for the crossings.