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Mayor proposes commercial corridor at The Weirs

By MICHAEL KITCH, LACONIA DAILY SUN

LACONIA — In a bid to reopen discussion of zoning and development at The Weirs, which has languished for the past year, Mayor Ed Engler will offer a specific proposal to redefine the Commercial Resort District when the City Council meets on Monday.

The Commercial Resort District now begins on Lake Street, just south of its junction with White Oaks Road, extends northward along Weirs Boulevard, includes the center of the Weirs and runs either side of Endicott Street North (US Route 3) to the Meredith town line. It also includes property along both sides of Endicott Street East (NH Route 11-B) east of the roundabout to just beyond the Weirs Community Center.

The zoning ordinance describes the district as intended to accommodate dining, lodging, retail shops and recreation entities for both occasional tourists and seasonal residents as well as apartments and condominiums. Both specified commercial and residential uses are permitted throughout the district.

Nearly two years ago the City Council asked the Planning Board to reconsider the mix of uses within the Commercial Resort District, Last year, the Planning Board proposed changes that would have encouraged residential development and excluded commercial development in the southern reach of the district along Weirs Boulevard, but left the remainder of the district unchanged. The proposal met with resistance from commercial interests and the proposal was abandoned.

Engler suggests dividing the district into two parts by carving a Commercial Resort Corridor District out from the existing Commercial Resort District. The corridor would be defined as "the area extending 400 feet from either side of the center line of the right-of-way for Endicott Street North (US Route 3) and Endicott Street East (NH Route 11-B" between the Meredith town line to the west and the center of the intersection with White Oaks Road to the east.

Within the corridor residential development, which is currently permitted throughout the Commercial Resort District, would be confined to spaces "not less than 20 feet above ground level, provided that at least a single, ground-level floor of the same building, with the same or larger footprint, is devoted to a permitted commercial use." In other words, along the corridor residential development would be restricted to the upper level of buildings and then only if the ground floor of the same building is put to commercial use.

The Commercial Resort District, where both commercial and residential uses are permitted, would remain unchanged beyond the borders of the corridor.

Two indicted for March home invasion in Meredith

By GAIL OBER, LACONIA DAILY SUN

LACONIA — Two of four people allegedly involved in a home invasion in Meredith in March have been indicted by the Belknap County grand jury for their alleged roles in the incident.

Tyler Best, 37, of 35 Woodrow Ave. in Franklin faces two separate counts of armed robbery. The first is for allegedly pointing a gun at three people inside a Livingston Road home on March 6 and ordering them to the floor, or words to that effect.

The second armed robbery charge alleges Best pulled one of the female victims from her bed and struck her in the head with the butt of the gun.

Meghan Tighe, 24, of 95 Winter St. in Tilton faces one count of being an accomplice to armed robbery for allegedly accompanying Best to Livingston Road.

The female victim was able to help police identify Best by drawing a tattoo that matched one on Best's forearm. Other victims recognized one of the four people who allegedly entered the home at 4:10 a.m. by some clothing they were wearing when they were there earlier.

Police got a lead in the case on March 11 when a woman called them to report she had overheard the four people "bragging" about what they had done and that their comments included statements about assaulting people and stealing several things.

Meredith Police obtained a search warrant for the Franklin home that they were staying in at the time. During a search of the home, police found four credit cards belonging to the the female victim in a shed behind the house and one debit card in the home.

Best is being held on $5,000 cash only bail in the Belknap County House of Corrections and has been there since his arrest. Tighe is not incarcerated at this time.

Meredith man indicted for raping ex-wife

By GAIL OBER, LACONIA DAILY SUN

LACONIA — A Meredith man accused of raping his ex-wife with a wire brush has been indicted by a Belknap County grand jury for one count of special felony – aggravated felonious sexual assault.

Alan Marceau, 61, of 230 Meredith Center Road is also facing three counts of misdemeanor simple assault-domestic violence related for grabbing the victim's hair, pushing her over a counter, and holding her down by her shoulders.

Marceau allegedly attacked the victim in March while she was asleep, house sitting in New Hampton.

Police accounts at the time said the victim was able to stop the sexual assault and reported the crime to police the next day when she realized how much damage she suffered.

When she went to Lakes Region General Hospital for treatment, staff reported the incident to the New Hampton Police.

While police were investigating, they learned Marceau had gone to the emergency room for treatment of a foot injury. Police found Marceau there and arrested him.

After spending the weekend in the Belknap County House of Corrections, Marceau appeared in the 4th Circuit Court, Laconia Division and was ordered held on $1,000 cash bail.

As of Friday at 5:45 p.m., Marceau was not incarcerated in Belknap County.

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