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EDC Eyes Vacant Properties

by Bobby Blair
November 15, 2018

Members of the Town's Economic Development Committee met Wednesday morning at 8am at Town Hall. The committee went back to the drawing board after an article which they sponsored was defeated at the most recent town meeting. That article would have created a fund for business to receive grants for the improvement of the exterior of their storefronts. The Town's Finance Committee rebuffed the article stating they did not wish to see taxpayers monies involved. The fund would have needed special legislation by the state. The committee will work on bringing a revised plan to spring Town Meeting.

The committee was advised that a West Coast company plans to request Selectmen at their December 5th meeting for a host agreement for a marijuana testing lab at 201 Summer Street. The committee also learned there is serious interest in the parcel of land which is up for sale to the left of 1750 Washington Street, the Town owned Parks & Rec and Veterans Services building. The concern came about as there is an easement through the property on Town owned land to the lot which is for sale.

Members also voiced their concerns about vacant commercial buildings in town, especially 9 Green Street (the former Ty-Car Mfg.), the former Gulf Gas Station at 799 Washington Street, and the vacant storefront next to Country Farms at 429 Washington Street in East Holliston. The committee had previously shown interest in the town purchasing 9 Green Street for the purpose of adding a parking lot to downtown. That property continues to add interest to unpaid taxes. The property also may have contaminants in the soil. Town Administrator Ritter said the Selectmen are now in the process of creating a charge for a five member committee to investigate the present state of the property. While the EDC would like to speak to the owners in person, Chairman Peter Barbieri stated that it is difficult to sometimes ascertain who the owners are when the property is listed as an LLC.

 

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