SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Local News

May 8, 2014

Beverly agrees to buy Camp Paradise

$950,000 sale hinges on state, CPA funding

(Continued)

Two of the larger requests came from Harborlight Community Partners for $300,000 to upgrade the Harborlight House and from Beverly Main Streets for $177,663 to redesign Ellis Square.
Others applications seek funding for repairs at First Parish Church, Hale House, Hastings House, Beverly Housing Authority and Obear Park.
Community Preservation Committee Chairwoman Wendy Pearl said the committee will start considering the applications at its next meeting on May 15. The committee, an all-volunteer group, can award up to $570,000 this year, subject to approval by the City Council.
Cahill said the city is also planning to apply for a maximum $500,000 grant through the Massachusetts Parkland Acquisitions and Renovations for Communities (PARC) Program to assist with buying Camp Paradise. It’s the same program the city used to help pay for the artificial turf field at Beverly High School.
In its CPA application, the city said Camp Paradise would be used for many youth and adult programs through the Beverly Recreation Department, including hiking, biking, backyard poultry, wilderness survival skills and beekeeping. The property would also be open to the public and could be reserved for family picnics, birthday parties and other events.
The one-story camp building has a wraparound porch on three sides and a large meeting room with a cathedral ceiling and fireplace. The building also has two small offices, two multi-stall bathrooms, a shower and a kitchen.
“The City of Beverly does not own another wooded area that has a support building like Camp Paradise,” the application said. “This property and building will greatly enhance the programs and open space that we can offer citizens of Beverly.”
The application said the property is being sought after for a development of five to seven houses. If the city buys the site, it would seek a conservation restriction to protect it from any future development, the application said.
Staff writer Paul Leighton can be reached at 978-338-2675 or pleighton@salemnews.com.
 

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