SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Local News

March 18, 2013

Hamilton eyes $4M property

Aquila Farm includes manor house, stables on 80 acres

(Continued)

“Four million is a lot of money on one hand,” Neill said. “On the other hand, you don’t always have an opportunity to purchase such a large tract of land. At times, there is a need for it.”

He said he believes the town should have a specific use for the land before calling a Town Meeting but said the timeline makes it difficult.

“Just to determine if a high school could be built there it would take longer than 120 days,” he said.

Selectman Jeff Hubbard said the town knew the property was on the market for a number of years and should have had discussions about it before now. He questions whether it is responsible to ask the town to spend $4 million in such a short amount of time but said he remains open-minded.

“I have a tough time imagining how purchasing a property at that cost would make economic sense for the town,” he said. “Unless there is oil underneath.”

Staff writer Jonathan Phelps can be reached at 978-338-2527 or by email at jphelps@salemnews.com. Follow him on Twitter at JPhelps_SN.

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