EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Merrimack Valley

February 17, 2014

Filling a need

Agency works to provide quality housing in Lawrence


The agency is seeking tenants for the 18, two- and three- bedroom rental units at 108 Newbury St. Rent will be determined by family size and income and applicants must meet the income restriction set by the federal and state government.

Andors said the lot on Milford Street, which is located off Brook and Union streets, will have two duplexes built on it and the empty Union Street lot will have four duplexes.

The agency had known about the vacant lot on Milford Street for several years. When the city put it on the market, it jumped at the chance to buy it.

”When we’re able to raise the money to invest in Lawrence, the benefits are great because you’re turning a lot that can be used for illegal activities or dumping, into homes, and that’s priceless,” Andors said.

Lawrence CommunityWorks is still waiting to close the sale on the 5-story, former Duck Mill at 4 Union St. which it plans to turn into 73 rental units and 10,000 square feet commercial

”It’s your typical abandoned mill building. We have to strip it down to the bare bones before we can do anything,” Andors said.

The building is no less beautiful with wide open spaces separated by columns, featuring high windows with separated panes. Many of the windows are broken, boarded up or covered in plastic and there is peeling paint throughout the mill along with water damage.

Armand Hyatt, general counsel for Lawrence CommunityWorks said rebuilding 4 Union St. will bring new life to that area.

“We saw it as an opportunity to create vibrancy in a place that has been overlooked for many years,” Hyatt said of 4 Union St. “Reviviendo (Spanish for reviving) is the code word; to bring life there and restore the historical significance of the building while giving people a place to live.”

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