Fall Start Seen For Route 120 Apartments

Valley News Business Writer
Sunday, August 13, 2017

Lebanon— The apartment complex to be built behind the Element hotel on Route 120 in Lebanon moved has moved a step closer to reality as the developer has filed his plans and sought permission from the city to begin construction.

Manchester developer Dick Anagnost filed a permit application with the Lebanon’s city planning department to begin construction on a $4 million, three-story apartment building. He hopes to be able to break ground on the project this fall and have it ready for occupancy next summer, according to Anagnost.

The apartment building is the first in a planned 153-unit residential complex in Altaria Lebanon Park, a mixed commercial and residential development spanning 65 acres of which the 4-year-old Element hotel was the first phase.

Anagnost expects the entire five-building apartment project to be completed by 2019 at a cost “all-in, probably $20 million to $30 million,” he said in an interview.

And even though construction on the project has not yet begun, “Apartment Leasing” signs are already up at the entrance to the Element hotel. Planning department administrator Leann Cushman estimates approval time to “release” a permit is about a week.

After years of complaints about the chronic housing shortage in the Lebanon and Hanover area more units are now in the various stages of planning, although how much the new developments will relieve pressure on the near-zero vacancy rate remains to be seen. Five different projects totaling 342 units are in various stages of planning and development in Lebanon.

The Altaria project will include one-, two- and three-bedroom units, along with underground parking, Anagnost said. He envisions residents to be “mostly young professionals, but we’ll have some families too because of the three-units. We’re hitting a broad spectrum.”

The complex also will include furnished units available for people in need of a short-term residence near Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, such as physicians serving their residency or visiting professors at Dartmouth College who teach for a semester or two.

Anagnost said a market study is being done to determine rental rates, but he anticipates them to range from about $1,700 to upward of $2,000 a month, depending on size. He said kitchen amenities in the units will include “granite countertops and all stainless steel appliances.”

Altaria is being developed by Hanover-based developer Peter Knights, who received the green light for the residential component from the Lebanon Planning Board in 2015. Overall, the development is to include 336,000 square feet of office space and 40,000 square feet of retail space. The board originally approved a subdivision plan at the site in 2011, which had been under consideration for several years prior.

Other housing projects at various stages in the pipeline in Lebanon include a 75-unit complex on Etna Road, which has been scaled back from over 100 planned units; a 29-unit mixed-income project on Tracy Street in West Lebanon sponsored by Twin Pines Housing (originally proposed for Main Street in West Lebanon); and an 80-unit building as part of developer David Clem’s commercial and residential River Park development. But the River Park apartment building is the last phase in Clem’s seven-phase development, “so it is presumably still some time away from development,” said David Brooks, director of planning and zoning for Lebanon, in an email.

John Lippman can be reached at jlippman@vnews.com.