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North Suburban News

Local Landmark To be Converted to Condos

Sep 07, 2018 06:00AM ● By Katie Lovett

STONEHAM - A Stoneham landmark is set to be razed and replaced with condominiums, according to plans filed this week with town officials.

Town Planner Erin Wortman confirmed Thursday that the new owner of the property that housed the former Dairy Dome ice cream shop has filed paperwork seeking permission to demolish the building and build four townhouse units.

The developer J-Marg, LLC of North Reading intends to construct one building with underground parking. Each unit will have a two-car garage, according to Wortman. Motorists will only be able to access the condominiums by driving down Middle Street and entering at the rear of the property. From there, residents can drive into their garages. There will be no visitor parking spaces on the property.

“Four housing units is less of an impact than retail use when it comes to traffic,” Wortman added.

Wortman said the plans received by her office do not include details about the size of the condominium units or how many bedrooms they will offer.  She added that the condominiums will likely be priced at market rate.

The town is able to impose zoning rules and regulations for sizing, density and scale of properties, and does require special permits and permissions for large-scale housing or residential projects. However, that control only extends so far as traffic, parking, green space, and other such areas.

“Whoever owns the property can do whatever they want with their property,” Wortman added.

The Planning Board will discuss the proposal during their meeting on Wednesday, Oct. 3.

The Dairy Dome closed in 2016 and was placed on the market. While there was some hope that new owners would purchase and reopen the ice cream shop and restaurant at 474 Main Street, no potential buyers stepped forward.

Once owned by former Stoneham High School teacher Tom Mayo and his family, the Dairy Dome was a local icon and popular destination for decades of Stoneham residents. In 2007, the Mayos began selling deli sandwiches, Italian food and soups. During the winter, when the Dome was closed, the family sold Christmas trees in the parking lot.

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