Grove St: More Open Space, Less Traffic NOW!
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Please only sign petition if you live in Watertown, MA or surrounding communities who will be impacted by any large development in this location.
We, the undersigned petitioners, write to express our dismay over the prospect of the sale of the property located on Grove Street currently being used as parking for Mount Auburn Hospital. We are aware that the lot is classified as Industrial 3 use, could allow up to five stories of building space, and is being marketed to prospective biotech developers. Industrial use is not the type of new development we, as a community, are looking for in this area but rather alternative use as in Open Space. Open space including athletic facilities would enhance both Mount Auburn Cemetery and satisfy Watertown community needs.
Watertown is already developing at a breakneck pace and we are losing green or open space to large buildings just as quickly. The town runs the risk of losing whatever balance we might have among commercial, residential, and opens spaces. Congestion on our roadways is reaching a breaking point, and Grove Street is a prime example: already during rush hours Grove Street is overwhelmed by Boston-bound commuters from neighboring communities seeking to avoid the recent lane reductions on Mount Auburn Street. Adding hundreds of more vehicle trips by occupants of either commercial or residential space on that road if the development were to take place will add to the traffic congestion as well as to issues with emissions, noise, waste, sewage, etc. There may be no infrastructure in place to cope with this growth.
We are also well-informed about the public hearing procedure for Special Permit / Site Plan Review cases that the developer of this site needs go thru in order to acquire a different use for this site and/or new construction greater than 4,000 s.f. of building area on this site. Attempts have been made in the past to develop this property and were met with strong opposition from town residents. We can promise that the opposition will be equally strong this time around, if not stronger. We understand that Buckingham Browne and Nichols School has crafted a proposal to turn the property into playing fields for use by both the school and the town. This proposal is much more aligned with our vision of the future of this area of Watertown. We support that plan and oppose commercial development of the Grove Street site.
Watertown Residents and Parents of WPS/BB&N Students
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