The developer of the proposed Madison Place apartment complex, a 40B project to be located off Route 9 near Crystal Pond Road, has agreed to pay the town $360K to help offset the impact the development will have on the town, Zoning Board of Appeals member Leo Bartolini Jr. told selectmen last week. The sum was reached after negotiations between developer Bob Moss and the ZBA.
Developers are not required to pay mitigation money to a town, but it is common practice. While selectmen seem pleased Moss was willing to offer up funds to help ease the impact of the project, they expressed some concern about how the money would be delivered.
Bartolini told the board Moss planned to designate the funds as a gift to the town, instead of as mitigation, a distinction that means Moss would get to decide how the money is spent.
“Doesn’t that defeat the purpose?” Selectman John Rooney asked. “If he’s keeping control over the funds, to me that’s zero mitigation. I’m not sure that’s in the best interest of the town.”
Bartolini said it has not been determined where the money would go, but likely candidates are police, fire, and recreation.
“My feeling is the developer is not the one who should determine how the money should be spent. The town should determine that,” Rooney said.
Selectman Bill Boland said Moss has a good track record, and he said he was optimistic about working with Moss on how to handle the funds appropriately.
“I think it’s a great offer from the developer,” Boland said. “Once he puts it in writing… we can work with him on what he’d like to see done with the money and come to an agreement.”
For more on the mitigation money, and the status of the Madison Place project, see this article in today’s Metrowest Daily News.