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Sensing a market rebound, Southworth buildng again in The Weirs

LACONIA — Signaling its growing confidence in the real estate market, Southworth Development LLC , the managing developer of Meredith Bay at The Weirs, plans to add a mid-rise building to its growing inventory along either side of Scenic Road.

North Lodges at Meredith Bay is planned on a 6.7-acre lot at the foot of Brickyard Mountain across Scenic Road from the Town Homes at Meredith Bay, which line the shoreline northward from Look Out Rock. The four-story building will house 24 two-bedroom condominium units, six on each floor. Three elevators serving the building will open directly into each of the six units. Chris Duprey, project executive for Southworth Development, anticipated the units would be brought to market in 2014 and priced "beginning in the low $400,000s," noting that the price with vary with the choice of optional features.

In 2010, Southworth began building the Town Homes, 19 two-bedroom town houses on three levels with garages, divided among five buildings along the shoreline. Duprey said that 11 of the have been sold or are under contract. At the same time, the Planning Board approved plans for three mid-rise buildings on the other side of Scenic Road, known as the Lodges at Meredith Bay. Like the North Lodges each of these buildings would house 24 condominium units on four-stories. Construction of the Lodges, which requires extensive site work, has not begun.

Meanwhile, Duprey expects the pace of sales at Meredith Bay, the 129-lot gated community atop Brickyard Mountain, to quicken. He said that 32 of the 129 lots have been sold, most of them since Southworth Development acquired a significant stake in the project in 2007. He said that prospective buyers are seeking to purchase homes rather than lots and there are currently two model homes at the the site.

Duprey stressed that with the construction of the North Lodges Southworth Development will diversify its inventory to include single-family homes and house lots at Meredith Bay, townhouses on three levels at the Town Homes and condominiums on one level at the North Lodges. He said with the completion of the three remaining mid-rise buildings, which have not been scheduled for construction, development the firm's shorefront properties would be virtually complete, leaving space only for a few single-family homes or duplexes.

Last Updated on Friday, 16 August 2013 01:49

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Laconia Police Captain to attend FBI training academy

LACONIA – Police Capt. Matt Canfield will attend the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Va., for an 11-week training session this fall.

Police Commissioners voted unanimously yesterday to send him after learning the FBI pays for the training and partially reimburses the department for transportation expenses.

Canfield said the FBI offers intensive training for leadership science and development to management-level police throughout the county. He said his application was submitted a while ago and he was recently told he had been accepted for this upcoming class.

Canfield will join a select number of area police officers who have attended the academy including, retired Laconia Police Chiefs Mike Moyer and Bill Baker, Tilton Police Chief Bob Cormier, Gilford Police Chief Kevin Keenan and Belknap County Sheriff Craig Wiggin.

Wiggin, who attended a number of years ago, said FBI National Academy is like going to military boot camp plus earning a master's degree in criminal justice and leadership all in a few short weeks.

In other business, commissioners voted unanimously to promote Master Patrol Officer Robert Cameron to the rank of sergeant and to move Sgt. Thomas Swett to the detective bureau where he will be the ranking detective.

Capt. Bill Clary said the shift will be in the beginning of the year after two new officers are slated to graduate from the N.H. Police Standards and Training academy. He said there are five openings yet to be filled and five conditional offers have been made.

Last Updated on Friday, 16 August 2013 02:07

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Belmont man charged with meth distribution

BELMONT — A Main Street man was ordered held on $1,000 cash bail for alleged possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute after being detained after a traffic stop early Thursday morning.

Michael Lima, 43, is also charged with one count of resisting arrest.

After a scuffle with police, a black container from Lima's pocket ended up on the ground where police allegedly found a scale, six baggies with 0.5 grams each of a substance they believed to be methamphetamine, and a glass pipe.

According to police affidavits obtained from the 4th Circuit Court, Laconia Division, Lima was a passenger in a truck operated by a friend and at 12:43 a.m. yesterday. A police officer patrolling on Shaker Road stopped a pickup for defective equipment.

The driver of the truck stepped out and gave the officer permission to look at the inspection sticker. While looking, the officer noticed two spoons with brown matter on them on the driver's seat and ordered the driver to put his hands on the truck, and Lima, who was the passenger, to put his hands on the dashboard.

The officer said he had to continually remind Lima to keep his hands on the dashboard.

When a supervisor arrived, Lima was ordered to get out of the car while the driver was searched. No drugs were found on the driver but he told police the truck wasn't his so he couldn't consent to a search.

When Lima gave his cell phone to the driver so he could call the owner of the truck, police noticed he kept putting his in his pockets and told him to stop.

One officer said Lima would take his hands out but would immediately put them back in.

Police noticed black object in his pocket and asked him what it was and Lima said it was his wallet.

Police said it had an appearance of "Hogue-type" grip and feared it may have been a gun. (Hogue is a manufacturer of gun grips.)

When police told him to remove the wallet from his pocket so they could make sure it wasn't a weapon he did not do so. When one of the officers went to put Lima's hands behind his back to handcuff him, Lima pulled away.

A struggle ensued and police said Lima kept resisting and one of the officers became concerned that the item in Lima's pocket was a weapon.
Police said as Lima continued to struggle with the officer, the supervisor stunned him with a Taser so the officer could bring him to the ground.

At press time, police said they had applied for a warrant to search the truck. Lima is no longer housed at the Belknap County House of Corrections.

Last Updated on Friday, 16 August 2013 02:00

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Meredith property values drop by 6.25% since 2009

MEREDITH — The toll taken on property values by the Great Recession is reflected in the update recently completed by the Assessing Department, which reports that between April 1, 2009, and April 1, 2013, the aggregate taxable value has dropped 6.25-percent, decreasing from $1,858,056,791 to $1,741,940,934.

Assessor Jim Commerford said that the analysis was based on 270 sales between April 2010 and April 1, 2013. Although the New Hampshire Department of Revenue Administration will not calculate the ratio of assessed values to market values until February, he estimated it would be slight less than 100-percent, noting that the ration was 104-percent in 2010, 105.7-in 2011 and 106 in 2012.

Since 2009, the value of mobile homes fell 30 percent, the steepest drop of the seven types of property. Vacant land lost 17 percent of its value, which Commerford suggested reflected the relatively plentiful inventory on hand when the recession struck and development stalled in 2009. The value of single family homes decreased by 9 percent, multifamily buildings by 5.4 percent, condominiums by 5 percent, waterfront residences by 4.6 percent and commercial and industrial properties by 3.2 percent.

Commerford said that that among waterfront homes those valued at $1 million or less lost the most value while those worth $2 million or more held their value. The value of properties on Lake Winnipesaukee declined by 5.3 percent, while island properties on the lake lost 3.5 percent of their value. the value of properties on Lake Pemigewasset dropped 12 percent, Lake Wicwas by 4.7 percent, Lake Waukewan 2 percent and Lake Winnisquam 1.8 percent.

Last Updated on Friday, 16 August 2013 01:53

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