By Joan F. Simoneau, Community Reporter
Marlborough – A public hearing to discuss a six-month moratorium on permits for housing developments in the city drew favorable comments from two local attorneys and no opposition at the Feb. 6 City Council meeting. Attorney Arthur Bergeron, who appears regularly before the Council, representing existing or potential developers, spoke favorably of the proposal which will allow local officials to develop a housing plan.
The request made by Mayor Arthur Vigeant will provide an opportunity to strategically review appeals being made at the present time and those anticipated. Since 2010 more than 950 housing units of various sizes have been approved for development in the city, he stated.
Bergeron said it would provide clarity and suggested focusing on current “dilapidated” areas of the city and older neighborhoods for building new developments. He mentioned giving further attention to the French Hill area of the city.
Attorney David McCabe commended city leaders for proposing a housing plan and that it would be beneficial to all. He asked that he be granted approval of a special permit he is seeking on behalf of BSL, Marlborough Development LLC – Benchmark, for an assisted living facility at the corner of Bolton Street and Poirier Drive.
“Assisted living facilities, like that proposed by Benchmark, are an important housing alternative for seniors who need assistance with the activities of daily living and cannot comfortably live alone, but do not require the level of medical and nursing care of a nursing or convalescent home,” said McCabe in a communication to the City Council. “Seniors needing the reduced level of care provided at an assisted living facility are severely underserved in the Marlborough community and the region generally.”
The Planning Board has scheduled a public hearing on the proposed moratorium for Monday, Feb. 27. The order is presently under study in the Urban Affairs Committee.