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Dover Ceremony Marks Naming of New Bridge to Dover Landing on the Cocheco River.

DOVER, NH. (July 2010) — A key part of Dover’s future was enshrined Friday with the names of a later Irish couple recognized as two of the City’s greatest benefactors.

A $4,67 million bridge on Washington Street crossing over the Cocheco River into the soon-to-be-developed downtown waterfront hub was dedicated as the Tommy and Mary Makem Memorial Bridge during an unveiling ceremony on Friday, July 30.

Tommy Makem, known as the “Godfather of Irish Music”, organized Irish music festivals that attracted acts from all over the world to Dover. His wife volunteered at several City schools. They championed public safety organizations, starting a concert to remember firefighters and donating money that saved the Mounted Patrol from elimination.

Mayor Scott Myers hosted Friday’s ceremony as about 200 people attended, including the couple’s four children and city, state, and federal officials. Son Rory told the audience that “The bridge naming is an honor we accept with great humility. I only hope we can do justice to their legacy.”

City Officials have big plans for the roughly 20 acres of waterfront property the bridge connects to. With plans put forth by Quincy MA developer Mark Dickinson, the project Dover Landing will be built in phases over five years and will include 180 residential units, and approximately 75,000sf of commercial space, including offices, restaurants, and shops. It will create hundreds of construction jobs and ultimately produce several hundred full time jobs and annual real estate taxes estimated at over $1,000,000.00.

State Department of Transportation Commissioner George Campbell told the crowd that the bridge represents an important transportation upgrade like the recent high speed tolling lanes on I-95 that will make the Granite State experience more enjoyable. “This bridge clearly supports economic development opportunities”, said Campbell.

Founded in 1980, Dickinson Development is a full-service commercial real estate development and project management consulting firm based in Quincy, Mass.

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