November 19, 2018
On November 19th, the Redgate/Kane development team and City staff will be bringing the McIntyre Project back to the table of City Council to kick off the review prior to submitting a final application to the Historic Monument program to transfer the property to the City. The review of the application process will continue through January 2019.
The City Council must make the decision to approve and then submit an application to the Historic Monument Program. The National Park Service (NPS) reviews the application and, ultimately, makes a formal recommendation to the General Services Administration (GSA). The application has three fundamental elements: a preservation plan, a use plan, and a financial plan. The GSA then makes a final decision as to whether to proceed with the transfer, and prepares the deed. Once the transfer is made, the NPS is responsible for monitoring the property to ensure its use is in accordance with the program regulations.
This process began last year when the GSA formally invited the City to submit an application to obtain the property. According to City Councilor and McIntyre Steering Committee member Chris Dwyer, most of the priorities from the collaborative process that led to the current design can be realized in the plan. “The City sponsored a comprehensive nine-session public input process from January through April of this year. Portsmouth citizens expressed a wide range of needs and ideas, and we can now begin to see tangible plans based on those ideas; for example: a flexible, public space that can serve residents year-round, further supporting our active community, a market area and an area for small vendors.”
The City and its partner Redgate/Kane would implement this vision. On the McIntyre Project website, residents can view plans for an indoor community space, improved walkability and a newly-created outdoor public plaza, amid adjacent ground-level uses that will include local arts and maker space, short term vendors, experimental and traditional retail, including the Post Office or other mailing service.
“Understandably so, there has been a lot of discussion regarding the future of the Post Office at the McIntyre Location,” said Michael Kane, Redgate/Kane. “While we progressed with the design and application process this summer, our support for the Post Office has been slightly misconstrued. The City has echoed the desires of the Post Office and residents to remain at the McIntyre location, and it is reflected in the designs. Given the realities of construction dangers, it is necessary for the Post Office to temporarily relocate. At this time, the Post Office has not made a decision on their interim location and may not continue their tenancy. Regardless of their decision, space remains included in design plans for a mailing service.”
If approved, this project is currently anticipated to be under construction in summer 2019 and completed by 2021. For full background on the McIntyre Project, the parameters of the transfer of this property, frequently asked questions and more, please visit https://www.cityofportsmouth.com/mcintyre-project.