SHREWSBURY – Fidelity Investments plans to move to a new Shrewsbury location.
During their April 13 meeting, the Planning Board unanimously approved plans for a new office building in the plaza at 571 Boston Turnpike.
Located on the corner of Route 9 and Grafton Street, the plaza is the location of Work ’N Gear, Staples, and home decor superstore At Home. The proposed building would be constructed in the southeast corner of the existing parking lot.
Fidelity Investments has outgrown its current site in the adjacent 551 Boston Turnpike plaza. It would occupy the new building and locate approximately 35 employees there.
The plans call for a one-story, 8,400-square-foot brick building. The existing parking lot, which currently has 565 spaces, would be reduced to 476 spaces. Both proponents of the project and members of the Planning Board acknowledged that the building would make use of an otherwise underutilized parking lot.
During an April 6 meeting, Joshua Lee Smith, a partner at Bowditch & Dewey LLP who represents the applicant in this case, called the existing lot a “sea of parking spaces.”
“The addition of this project will add to the aesthetic appeal of the site,” Smith said. “It will also break up the monotony of all the parking.”
“I think it’s a great use for that site… it’s a very bland site right now, and this [project] definitely enhances the look of it,” Planning Board member Joseph Thomas said.
The surrounding landscape would also receive improvements. Trees and other vegetation would be added around both the building and Route 9.
Smith noted that there would be little to no light, noise, or traffic impact in building the new structure. At peak hours, the building would draw between 15 and 19 vehicles, and there would be no new access points to the existing plaza.
As part of the approval process, the Planning Board granted a waiver regarding pavement thickness.