Market Basket project moves forward

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By Melanie Petrucci, Senior Community Reporter

Edgemere site plan PDF/
Courtesy Shrewsbury Planning Department

Shrewsbury – On June 19, the Shrewsbury Planning Board received an application for special permitting for the Edgemere Crossing at Flint Pond project, formerly the Edgemere Drive-in Theater and more commonly known as the Market Basket project. Located at 180-222 Hartford Turnpike, the application was filed by the Route 20 Nominee Trust and Demoulas Super Markets, Inc.

“The project came in at the deadline which was about a week ago, so this is a site plan and special permit under the Route 20 Overlay District,” said Shrewsbury Town Planner Bernie Cahill on June 27. “Zoning changes were made at the Annual Town Meeting in 2017 to allow something like this to come forward.”

The site contains roughly 67 plus acres of land for a mixed use plan including 250 residential units and a large scale retailer (Market Basket Super Market), along with a few smaller retail units, a pharmacy and a bank.

Cahill noted that the residential units will be limited to one or two bedrooms and, as of now, there are no plans for any restaurants.

The Trust and Demoulas Super Markets, Inc. began discussions with the town in 2016, pertaining to the development to a mixed-use development which lead to the creation of two Warrant Articles,  23 and 24, which were on the May 2017 Annual Town Meeting Warrant. Both were passed.

Essentially, these two articles amended the Route 20 Overlay District by altering the zoning map so the entire parcel owned by the Trust would be contained within a Commercial Business Zoning District and the Route 20 Overlay District (Article 23) and added language (Article 24) that allowed for a mixed-use development on that site by requiring a Special Permit.

In the intervening time, the applicant and the town have been working to resolve issues such as public utilities that will support the development and improve the Route 20 Corridor.

“With town engineering and with Weston & Sampson, our consultant pursuer, and with Worcester, the state and the applicant developer, we’ve been working on figuring out the logistics for the sewer, the infrastructure and how it’s going to work,” Cahill added.

Relevant to infrastructure, Assistant Town Manager Kristen Las stated at a recent informational meeting of the Route 20 Corridor Master Plan held June 24 that the town along with the developer received a grant for $3.75 million to improve the Lake Street and Route 20 area as well as the new driveway at the development of Route 20. They are currently working through that design now, and she expects that those improvements will begin in about a year.

A public hearing process will begin with a broad overview of the project at the next Planning Board meeting scheduled for Thursday, July 11, at 7 p.m. at Town Hall, 100 Maple Ave.

Cahill expects the public hearing to remain open for at least three or four meetings. For further information, visit https://shrewsburyma.gov/828/Large-Scale-Projects