Friday, January 18, 2008
News from surrounding towns
AvalonBay Communities, Inc. has proposed a 150-unit affordable housing project off Forest Ridge Road on land previously owned by the Thoreau Club. This is close to the 350-unit affordable housing project off Old Powder Mill Road proposed by Trammel Crow Residential. The Trammel Crow project is under review by the Zoning Board of Appeals and is supported by Concord Selectmen because it will allow the town to achieve the target that 10% of the town's housing stock be affordable. The 10% is required in order to refuse developments under state law 40B. It has not been decided if Concord will support the second development, which requires a Town Meeting vote to change the use of the land from industrial to residential. Source: Globe NW, January 13.
A $200 million power plant proposed for North Billerica near the Chelmsford, Tewksbury and Lowell lines appears to be moving forward in spite of opposition by residents in neighboring towns concerned about pollution and industrial hazards. Owners Montgomery Energy Power Partners may break ground this summer with the goal of having the plant running within a year if all approvals go smoothly. The plant would operate only during periods of peak electrical use, and would use natural gas with ultra-low-sulfur diesel as back up. The Town of Billerica has negotiated an agreement for the owners to pay about $30 million in lieu of taxes to the town over the next 20 years. Source: Globe NW, January 10.
A town traffic committee is reviewing a revised proposal for a Home Depot in the Billerica Mall. It calls for a 132,000 square-foot building as well as a 26,000 square-foot garden center. Several smaller parcels will be set aside for other businesses. The store being proposed is 3,800 square feet less in size than a 2006 plan withdrawn due to town opposition. Source: wickedlocal.com January 9.
"With just over two weeks until the decision deadline for a proposed 170-unit senior housing development on the Quail Ridge golf course, the Planning Board angered nearby residents by reopening the question of allowing traffic from the development through a nearby neighborhood." Source: "Residents angry at Planning Board change," www.wickedlocal.com, January 9.
Four Acton school principals are due to retire in June. Three new elementary school principals will be hired, and one will be hired for the high school. www.wickedlocal.com, January 2.
The Westford-based Nashoba Learning Group, which provides education for autistic students, will move to a larger facility in Bedford in February. The school will be able to double its student population to 70 and reduce a waiting list of nearly 100. Source: Globe NW, January 10.
Bedford Police note several GPS thefts have been reported throughout the area, including Middlesex Turnpike and The Great Road. Source: wickedlocal.com January 9.
Police are searching for two men in connection with a January 2 bank robbery at Middlesex Savings Bank. Each suspect reportedly approached a different teller at the same time and passed a note. A similar incident occurred about a month earlier at a Sovereign Bank in the same Littleton Road shopping plaza. Source: "Police search for suspects in bank robbery," www.wickedlocal.com, January 2.
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