Melrose Considers Redevelopment Plans After Downtown Fire [VIDEO]
MELROSE -- Eleven businesses and eight families were effected by the blaze that destroyed a portion of downtown Melrose in September and now the city is picking up the pieces.
City Administrator for Melrose, Mike Brethorst says out of the eleven businesses, three businesses, The Middy Bar, The Middy Restaurant and an Hispanic grocery store have not been able to relocate, leaving the owners with few options.
"The city of Melrose is actively working with the two property owners that are directly impacted that will go under demolition."
Through a series of meetings the city has been available to answer owners questions.
"We're trying to work as a one stop shop for these businesses to help them relocate and do demolition but ultimately we want them to redevelop."
The city has also been trying to help with the cost of redeveloping by creating a new grant.
"We've created a new grant program to help them [owners] as a matching grant, forgivable grant program, if they do some store front revitalization to make it more historic, to make it significant and increase property values."
The goal is for demolition to begin by the end of November or early December and redevelopment to begin next spring.
The city has also partnered with Catholic Charities and the Initiative Foundation to raise nearly $160,000 to help redevelopment and relocation for the displaced families.