Council candidate focuses on downtown, walking trails
Mon Oct 24, 2011, 02:12 AM EDT
HAVERHILL — City Council candidate Thomas Sullivan said if elected, he will focus on revitalizing downtown, specifically Merrimack Street, where earlier this year he opened a new law office in the Landmark Building.
He said much progress has been made at the other end of downtown and as the economy improves, developers and investors will turn their attention to the Merrimack Street end.
"I am excited by the prospect of a river walk along Merrimack Street and I intend to advocate for the reconstruction and expansion of the Merrimack Street parking garage with new business storefronts built in front of the garage," he said.
Sullivan is vice president of the nonprofit Winnekenni Foundation, which is responsible for operating, maintaining and promoting Winnekenni Castle. He wants to improve the trails around Winnekenni Park and Plug Pond and renovate the bathrooms and snack bar at Plug Pond and at the tennis court shack at Winnekenni Park.
Sullivan said he is working with city officials to create a new parking area at the entrance to the park.
Sullivan was chairman of the mayor's Dog Park Committee and has suggested Plug Pond and the American Legion Farm as two possible sites.
"Right now dog owners use Winnekenni Park and Riverside Stadium to take their pets for exercise, and that's fine, but it would be great to create a safe area where dog owners can let their pets off their leashes," he said.
Sullivan, a member of the city's Forest Management Committee, said he wants to work with Haverhill's state legislators to get $500,000 for a forest management program. He said the money was included in an environmental bond bill signed into law in 2007.
Sullivan is a member of the city's License Commission, which is responsible for regulating and permitting local bars, restaurants and variety stores. He is also a member and past chairman of the VFW Santa Parade, which was started in 1964 by his father, the late John T. Sullivan, and a group of veterans from Lorraine Post 29. He is also on the board of directors for Career Resources Corporation and the Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce.