By Bonnie Adams, Government Editor
Marlborough – Last year local officials were stunned by the news that that Fidelity Investments was planning on vacating their Marlborough campus by the end of 2012 and relocating 1,100 employees to Rhode Island or New Hampshire. Now, with the announcement that the TJX Companies, Inc., (TJX) has decided to purchase two of the soon to be vacant Fidelity buildings, officials are hopeful that the city will once again be moving forward.
Sherry Lang, senior vice president of global communications for TJX, said in a March 8 press release that the company was “pleased to have signed a purchase and sale agreement for two buildings located at 300 and 400 Puritan Way in Marlborough.”
“This space is expected to house certain home office operations and will help TJX accommodate its future growth plans,” she added.
The company's headquarters are currently located at 770 Cochituate Road in Framingham. That property, along with the two Marlborough buildings, would provide TJX with “two major campuses operating in close proximity to one another,” Lang noted. She added that the company did not expect the move to occur before late summer or early fall of 2013.
In conjunction with the TJX news, Marlborough Mayor Arthur Vigeant released a statement as well, announcing that the city and TJX had agreed “in principle” to a Tax Increment Financing (“TIF”) plan.
TIFs offers tax breaks to developers, by providing tax increment financing exemptions on the incremental increase of the assessed value of real property. A community must be located in an area designated by the state as an Economic Opportunity Area (EOA) in order to issue TIFs. A TIF must first be approved by municipal vote and then be certified by the state's Economic Assistance Coordinating Council (EACC). Companies who are granted TIFs must also comply with certain standards such as agreeing to retain a number of jobs, creating new ones, and filing a report with the state each year.
“Working with City Council President Trish Pope and the members of the City Council, I look forward to working with the leaders from TJX and the Marlborough Economic Development Corporation to finalize a competitive package that will allow new investments to be made in Marlborough while bringing needed revenue to the city, and most importantly, jobs for our residents,” Vigeant noted in his statement.
Lang said TJX would not be commenting further on the proposed move or the number of employees the company expected to transfer to the new campus until a future date.