One-year process will envision the future of Town-owned properties
EASTHAM, MA – The Town of Eastham is pleased to announce the selection of Union Studio Architecture & Community Design to create a Master Plan for three Town-owned properties in North Eastham: 4790 State Highway Route 6 (known as the “T-Time Property”), 4550 State Highway Route 6 (Town Center Plaza property), and 1405 Nauset Rd (site of the current Council on Aging). The “North Eastham Village Center Master Plan” will include conceptual designs for the use of each property, as well as a comprehensive plan showing how the three sites tie into the larger community. The final plan will also provide financial estimates and a phased timeline for construction on each site. Development of the Master Plan is expected to take approximately one year and community members will be invited to participate at multiple points throughout the process. Funding for the Master Plan project will be supplemented by a $75,000 economic development grant from the Massachusetts Rural and Small Town Development Fund.
As an informal kickoff to the Master Plan project, members of the public are invited to attend or view the regular meeting of Eastham’s T-Time Development Committee on Tuesday, March 1 at 5 PM. During the meeting, members of the Union Studio team will provide an introductory presentation on the project. The meeting agenda and participation information will be available on the Town website at www.eastham-ma.gov.
Union Studio Brings 20 Years of Community Design Expertise
The Town selected Union Studio Architecture & Community Design for the Master Plan project due to the firm’s strong track record in producing high quality, community-informed master plans, and innovative designs for housing and mixed use projects. Altogether, Union Studio has over 20 years of experience working in communities across the United States and New England, including recent projects in the Cape Cod towns of Sandwich, Dennis, and Brewster.
“The Town was extremely impressed with the complementary expertise offered by Union Studio and its project partners,” said Jacqueline Beebe, Eastham Town Administrator. “This team designs beautiful, walkable places that people enjoy and want to spend time in, and they share our vision of a public process that allows opportunities for the community to help shape the end result.”
Union Studio has assembled a team of partner agencies that will provide an array of professional and technical assistance for the project, including Horsley Witten Group, a Cape Cod-based engineering, designing, and planning firm; Peregrine Group, which provides real estate advisory services; and the Cape Cod-based CapeBuilt Companies, a construction and development business.
“As a community design practice, Union Studio is thrilled to be working with the Town of Eastham on such
an important master planning effort,” said Douglas Kallfelz, Managing Partner at Union Studio. “We are grateful for the opportunity, and we look forward to sharing our passion for meaningful placemaking as we help the town envision a future for these unique parcels.”
Envisioning a Walkable North Eastham
The North Eastham Village Center Master Plan is the latest step in a multi-phase, community-informed planning effort that focuses on a key goal in the Town of Eastham’s 5-Year Strategic Plan: creating a vibrant and walkable village center in North Eastham.
Eastham is one of the only towns on Cape Cod without a defined Main Street district or walkable village center. State Highway Route 6, the four-lane arterial road that hosts the majority of Eastham’s commercial development, bisects the town, providing few safe options for bicyclists and pedestrians, and limiting connectivity between businesses. Through the Master Plan process, the Town is looking to identify ways to balance Eastham’s historic, small-town identity and environmental considerations with increased vibrancy and economic opportunity.
Significant work has already been completed to identify and narrow options for use of the three Town-owned parcels which, together, will form the basis of the Master Plan. In November of 2021, after two years of extensive research and community input, the Town’s T-Time Development Committee presented the Eastham Select Board with a set of recommendations for how the properties could be used. The T-Time Committee’s recommendations will inform, and guide, the North Eastham Village Center Master Plan.
Committee recommendations prioritized recreational green space, a public community center building, housing, and small business/commercial uses to be spread across the three sites. Walkable, car free areas; a balance of natural and built space; and respect for Eastham’s small-town charm and natural environment were all highlighted as integral to any project plans moving forward. Echoing the Town’s own goals in acquiring the Town Center Plaza property, the Committee recommendations noted that the six businesses currently on that site should be retained through any future redevelopment, and that the owners and operators of these businesses should be closely involved in the Master Plan process. The full set of recommendations can be found on the T-Time Committee project website at www.easthamttime.org.