Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness (MVP)

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Community Resilience Building Workshop Summary of Findings
MVP Program Environmentally Impacted & Chemically Hazardous Sites Vulnerability Assessment
Pamphlet - Haverhill Climate Change

Haverhill’s MVP Action Grant will fund a Feasibility Study for the removal of the Little River Dam, located just north of Winter Street on the Little River.  During the City’s Community Resilience Building workshop, City stakeholders identified critical areas of flood vulnerability upstream upstream of the Little River Dam.  The Little River Dam was originally built to power the Stevens Mill, although it has not been used for this purpose for many decades.  The dam is believed to contribute to upstream flooding at areas along Apple Street and Little River Street, both of which are located within the Acre Neighborhood, one of the City’s environmental justice (EJ) communities. 

Exploration of removal of the dam through this feasibility study is the first step in responding to key priorities identified in the City’s Community Resilience Building Workshop and promoting a suite of potential benefits that would result from dam removal, including:

  • Reduced flooding risk in an environmental justice neighborhood
  • Potential addition of a river access point and public green space amenity from land recovered from the dam’s impoundment
  • Increased tree cover in the downtown area
  • Increased marketability of the Stevens Mill property for mixed-use redevelopment and affordable housing (sale of the property has been hindered in part by liability associated with dam ownership)
  • Environmental benefits associated with removal of a barrier to fish passage along the Little River
  • Demonstration of nature-based solutions for riverbank restoration and stabilization that could be replicated along the City’s waterways, including the Merrimack River, as well as throughout the Commonwealth.