By Joan F. Simoneau, Community Reporter
Marlborough – More than 35 residents from the Glen Street area of the city expressed their opposition to the construction of a five multi-family residential building development during a public hearing held during the City Council's Sept. 26 meeting.
The developer, Marlborough/Northborough Land Realty Trust, is seeking approval to construct a development that would have 290 one- and two-bedroom apartments along Route 20, across from RK Plaza.
Attorney Arthur Bergeron, representing the developer, came prepared to introduce measures to help alleviate objections he said he had heard from residents when he went “door-to-door” in the area, to talk to them about the proposal.
“The major issue is flooding,” he said, as he introduced a proposal for the installation of a dedicated three-foot-wide pipe in the area of the detention basin that he said would help alleviate the problem.
Residents noted they were concerned about the already present water conditions as well as heavy traffic that would evolve. They also expressed concerns about the financial impact on city schools with the addition of many school-age children. They also noted the added burdens to the Fire and Police departments.
George Stein of 28 Sandini Rd. said he did not agree that the drainage proposal would resolve all the immediate problems or those that may arise in the future. He also questioned the number of apartments already available in the city. William Caulder, managing director of the Gutierrez Company, owner of the land for the past 10 years, said that because of the economy, more people are seeking apartment living, as it is less costly. When it was suggested that commercial building is more advantageous to the city than residential projects, Caulder said attempts have been made to build commercial offices on the land, but they have not been successful.
Ron Bucchino, a resident of 88 Glen St. for more than 50 years, suggested that the city work with the developer to conduct an environmental impact study prior to considering the project. He also suggested that the council have a cost benefit analysis conducted with the developer before making a decision. He presented the council a list of residents who are opposed to the proposal.
“They could not attend the hearing tonight and asked me to express their feelings,” he said.
Ward 3 Councilor Matt Elder said that he agrees with the many constituents who have called him and sent e-mail in opposition. The proposal will next be addressed in the council's Urban Affairs and Housing Committee.
In other business, the City Council approved Mayor Nancy Stevens's request to transfer $37,186.22 from the Firefighter to Firefighter Overtime account. Another transfer for the Fire Department recommended by the mayor called for transferring $100,000 to the Firefighter Overtime account. The Finance Committee recommended that the request be denied and the council agreed with the recommendation and denied the three transfers from short-term interest accounts to Firefighter Overtime.