Harwich News

New Harwich Center Convenience Store Plan Filed

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — A new proposal for a convenience store at the former gas station in Harwich Center has been filed with the historic district and historical commission. The proponent for the mixed-use development, Saumil Patel, withdrew plans in December after six months of debate relating to compliance with historic character in the village. At that time, Patel's attorney Howard C. Cahoon said they would be back wit...

Commission To Examine Naturalizing Bell's Neck Bogs

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — The conservation commission wrestled with the town's farming heritage last week when considering whether to issue a new lease for the 11-acre Bell's Neck cranberry bogs. The commission ultimately decided to not issue a lease and instead develop a management plan for the property, located adjacent to the Herring River and Bell's Neck Reservoir, which would also consider allowing the bogs to naturalize. ...

Selectmen Nix Room Occupation Tax Increase Article

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — The board of selectmen voted Monday night to remove an article seeking an increase in the local room occupancy tax from 4 to 6 percent from the May annual town meeting warrant. Town Administrator Christopher Clark told selectmen Monday night he was presenting a balanced budget to the finance committee, unless selectmen decided to make additional adjustments that evening. The budget presented by Clark...

HARWICH – In spite of a parent survey in which a majority of families said they were in favor of keeping the Spanish language program at Harwich and Chatham Elementary Schools, the Monomoy Regional School Committee voted last Thursday night in favor of doing away with the language instruction and bringing in a science/STEM initiative that committee members hope will better prepare students for the state MCAS test...

HARWICH – While some students spent February vacation catching up on homework and sleep, a group of 17 students from Monomoy Regional High School's Global Studies program ventured across the Atlantic Ocean for a life-changing service learning trip to Tanzania, where they went on safari, visited museums, and made lifelong connections with students from the SEGA Girls Secondary School. The first-of-its-kind sojo...

Residents Speak Out Against West Harwich Retail Proposal

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — While the planning board received a presentation this past week on the proposed development of a 7,489-square-foot retail structure along Route 28 in West Harwich, it is still not clear what business will occupy the location. Residents of the area raised questions about the type of retail business and the future of the historic Captain George Winchell Baker house, which is located on one of the two l...

Kavanagh Not Running, Ford Seeking Seat As Selectman

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — With three weeks remaining before the close of nomination papers, there are now two candidates who have expressed their intention to run for the two seats on the board of selectmen, and one incumbent who said she does not think she will run again. Board of Selectmen Chair Julie Kavanagh said on Tuesday she does not think she will be running for re-election. Kavanagh said it has been a rough winter fo...

Saquatucket Snack Shack Draws Just One Proposal

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — The town has received only one response to its request for proposals for the lease of the Saquatucket Harbor snack shack this summer. Town Administrator Christopher Clark said he would be putting together a rating team to evaluate the proposal. “I thought we'd have a few more responses based upon the comments we had,” Clark said. “But it's nice to have an established business put one in. Remember, we...

HARWICH — Selectmen heard this week that it would be possible, through a multi-step process, for the board to reclaim control over - or even sell - the proposed pet burial ground land on Queen Anne Road. But that can't happen without the consent of the cemetery commission, which strongly backs the proposal, commission Chairman Cynthia Eldredge said. “The cemetery commission will not ever consider this surplu...

Study Calls For $1.5 Million In Work On Brooks Academy

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH – Major preservation and improvement plans are being considered for historic Brooks Academy based on an exterior assessment and concept design study done for the Brooks Academy Museum Commission by the architectural firm BIA Studio. At May's annual town meeting, voters will be asked to approve an initial $130,000 from Community Preservation Act funds, and the commission is projecting approximately $500...

HARWICH — Walking through the Harwich Cultural Center, one can feel an energy from the days when the former middle school was filled with students. Now, however, it's coming from the artists who occupy the building, many of whom are teaching their crafts to enthusiastic residents. “It's not just for the artists, it's for everyone,” said Community Center Director Carolyn Carey, who oversees the cultural center ...

ConsCom Approves Red River Revetment Extension

By: Alan Pollock

HARWICH — The conservation commission agrees that repairing and slightly enlarging a revetment is the best way to stem erosion at the east end of Red River Beach. Provided that state regulators agree, the town will move ahead with the work as soon as possible. After a short discussion last Wednesday, the commission voted to grant a notice of intent to the town to extend the landward side of the jetty by abou...