Historic Mill District

Upcoming Community Conversation

Wednesday, January 30, 2019 - 7:00 PM

Memorial Hall, Memorial Hall Library

2 North Main Street


Historic Mill District Public Meeting January 30, 2019 Memorial Hall Library

At Town Meeting in May of 2015, Andover voters overwhelming approved the creation of the Historic Mill District (HMD).  This new zoning district encompasses nearly one hundred (100) acres between Main Street, Dundee Park, the Shawsheen River and Whole Foods Grocery Store.  The purpose of the HMD is to encourage smart growth development in proximity to Andover’s regional transit station by fostering a range of housing opportunities within mixed-use development projects.  
In order to help guide Andover’s Vision for future development within the HMD, the new bylaw allowed for the development of design guidelines to help preserve and augment the HMD’s architectural qualities, historic character, and scale.  In the Fall of 2016, the Board of Selectmen established the Historic Mill District Task Force to assist in the development of the design guidelines.

On March 24, 2017, the Town of Andover, under the leadership of the HMD Task Force, selected Gamble Associates, an architecture and urban design firm in Cambridge, MA, to help develop the design guidelines.  The Town held three formal community engagement meetings in May, July and October 2018 with Gamble Associates at Memorial Hall Library.  The Andover Planning Board adopted the community driven Historic Mill District Design Guidelines on February 13, 2018.     

Ongoing and Upcoming Events

The Historic Mill District Task Force is hosting a series of community conversations through 2018 and 2019 on the topics of Circulation and Street Design, Placemaking and Water and Sewer.  Please check back here frequently upcoming meeting dates.  Videos of these public forums can be found below.

Community Conversations

November 28, 2018 

Strategic Placemaking

At a  November 28th public forum the HMD Task Force continued their conversation on strategic placemaking.  A hands on brainstorming session was held at Memorial Hall Library.

Video of the community conversation can be found here:

November 28, 2018 Community Conversation on Placemaking

October 16, 2018 

Street Design & Circulation and Strategic Placemaking

On October 16th, in their second of a series of public forums, the Historic Mill District Task Force continued their community conversation on traffic mitigation to improve accessibility for pedestrians bicyclists and motor vehicles, and began to discuss strategic placemaking opportunities.  Design Consultant, Inc.'s presentation can be found here Design Consultants, Inc. Presentation October 16, 2018.  Gamble Associates presentation on Strategic Placemaking can be found here Gamble Associates Presentation October 16, 2018.

Video of the community conversation can be found here:

October 16, 2018 Community Conversation on Traffic & Circulation and Placemaking

September 26, 2018 

Street Design & Circulation

On September 26th the first public forum was held at the Public Safety Center on Street Design and Circulation.  Part 1 of the presentation can be found here Street Design and Circulation Presentation.  Part 2 of the presentation can be found here Design Consultants, Inc. Presentation September 26, 2018.  

Video of the community conversation can be found here:

September 26, 2018 Community Conversation on Street Design & Circulation

On August 2nd, at a meeting with the Historic Mill District Task Force, Design Consultants, Inc reviewed the Scope of Work for the Traffic and Circulation Study for the Historic Mill District. The presentation can be found here:  DCI, Inc Presentation to HMD Task Force 8.2.18

In the News

Town Makes Plans for Historic Mill District Eagle Tribune August 5, 2018.

Commerce Chamber Honors Three From Andover. Andover Townsman May 27, 2018.

Congratulations to Charlie Kendrick, Chair of the Historic Mill District Task Force, for being a recipient of the Andover Chamber of Commerce 2018 Community Service Award for his continued dedication to the Historic Mill District and the Town!

“In his quiet but firm and generous way, Charlie has lent his expertise to some of the biggest and most forward-looking projects in town.  By working collaboratively with the town and Andover citizens' groups, Charlie is a true example of what it means to give back to one’s community.” Elaine Clements, Andover Historical Society

Charlie Kendrick 2018 Andover Chamber of Commerce Community Service Award

Historic Mill District Design Guidelines

Adopted February 13, 2018 by the Andover Planning Board

Historic Mill District Design Guidelines

These Design Guidelines address the design of new buildings within Andover’s Historic Mill District. New development, if not done well, has the potential to undermine the very quality of place that makes Andover attractive. Design Guidelines address this. At the same time, if design guidelines are too restrictive, they have the potential to thwart redevelopment efforts by lengthening the review process, frustrating constituents and scaring away potential developers. Finding the right balance of insights and ideas without being too prescriptive lies at the essence of what constitutes a well-crafted set of design guidelines.  

Andover’s downtown is poised for smart growth. There is a palpable desire to capitalize on the unique characteristics of its historic resources and the advantages of living and working in a walkable, transit-oriented district. While much of the district is already built out, an emphasis on adaptive reuse will bring existing buildings into more productive use and add vibrancy to the Town. Unfortunately, the center of the district is also the area that has the least in common with the physical characteristics of Andover that people cherish. Unsafe street intersections, a prevalence of surface parking and low density, suburban structures signal a preference for car-dependent uses. Establishing guidelines that direct investment to areas that need them most is both timely and essential for Andover to thrive.

Presentation to the Planning Board February 13, 2018 

Design Guidelines Public Forums

October 18, 2017 - Meeting # 3

Video of Design Guidelines Public Forum October 18, 2017

Information from the October 18, 2017 Meeting

Information from July 13, 2017 Meeting

Information from May 18, 2017 Public Meeting

Document & Resource Archive