It has been an albatross around Haverhill’s neck for four decades.
The Woolworth building at the intersection of Main and Merrimack streets has been vacant for more than 40 years.
Because that is the eastern gateway to downtown and a prime spot along the Merrimack River, the empty former store has been the subject of countless discussions over the years.
City leaders have talked repeatedly about finding a developer for it. It has been the subject of dozens, maybe hundreds of newspaper stories.
This week, it all changed. The building’s owner, the Haverhill Foundation business group, announced a plan to demolish the building and erect a structure to house a satellite campus for UMass Lowell and several businesses.
The plan also calls for several other nearby buildings to be demolished and new housing put up.
The changes, which will alter the eastern end of downtown, was announced at a meeting of the developers and city and state officials.