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Former Chippens Hill school to be converted into multifamily

Former school on Chippens Hill

The former school on Chippens Hill will be converted into apartments, ending a long period of uncertainty and controversy over the re-purpose of the building.

Local developer Alex & Sons Group LLC plans to convert the building into four apartments.

The former school was built in 1921 and closed decades ago.

Brian Skinner, Chairman of the Zoning Commission said initially the application bothered him but said the school was there before the houses were there.

“The four family will not bring down property values and the developer is local in town. They met all the requirements and it looks good to me” said Skinner.

Commissioner Jim Albert said the commission crafted together a plan of conservation and development for the city and this fits the purpose of the plan. Albert did, however, recognize the historical significance of the former school.

“It’s a historical site.” said Albert.

In late 2015 the city put the former schoolhouse up for sale and sought proposals.

A few proposals were submitted including a cat sanctuary and an art studio. At the time the commission controversially shot down all those proposals.

The commission unanimously approved the special permit to change the property to residential and to allow a multifamily in a single-family zone at its November meeting.

During public participation, there were no objections.

The developer says the building will maintain its outside appearance and will have three two-bedroom units and a one-bedroom unit.

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