South Hunt Area - District Improvement Program

Office of Community and Economic Development - South Hunt Area Projects
Atlantic Center, Baileys Pond, Hatters Point

A Development District and accompanying Development Program enable a municipality to identify and capture an anticipated stream of local property tax revenues expected to be generated by new development in a designated district. As economic development investments are made by public and private entities in a district, the assessed value of real property in that district is expected to increase, and tax revenues collected on the increase in the assessed value are used to pay for economic development. The method for designating a district and capturing tax revenues associated with increases in assessed value are established by statute.

The City has experienced growth in the area around South Hunt Road, with the approval of residential developments such as Amesbury Heights (240 apartment units)[1], Baileys Pond (100 units of townhouses), and Hatters Point Phase II (45 condominiums).In addition to these recently constructed, and under construction, projects, is a transformative sports and recreation center to be built at 24 South Hunt Road. The 50-acre property is the future location of the Atlantic Sports Center, a proposed 410,000-square-foot, $40,000,000 athletic facility, with 5.5 hockey rinks, office space designed to appeal to sports-related business, and a conference center.  Additional development potential in the area exists for vacant City land in the form of 46 South Martin Road, at 38 acres, and 21 Pond View Road (Route 150) at 6.7 acres. The combined impact of approved private development and potential public/private partnership development sites warrants an investment in traffic planning by the City.

The use of DIF as an economic development financing tool in the South Hunt Area, where development is both planned and underway, enhances the cyclical relationship between private investment and the use of taxation from new private investment to leverage infrastructure improvements to facilitate the private investment.  The infrastructure will mitigate growth impacts and foster opportunities for the new private investment which will facilitate new employment and tax revenues, and create a positive economic ripple effect. The DIF District creates the vehicle through which private investment can be converted into the infrastructure investment necessary to facilitate the growth.

Contact: William J. Scott, Community and Economic Development Director scottw@amesburyma.gov