MWDN: Southborough board, residents skeptical of traffic study for condo complex

The developer of a proposed 180-unit 40B condominium project off Flagg Road went before the Board of Selectmen last night to discuss his assertions that the project would have only a “small impact” on traffic in the area. It’s an assertion the board, along with a collection of neighbors who attended the meeting, didn’t entirely buy.

A study commissioned by Southborough developer William Depietri of Capital Group Properties said area roads can sufficiently handle traffic generated by the project. You can read about the results of the study here.

Depietri still needs approval for the 40B from Mass Housing before he can present plans to the town’s Zoning Board of Appeals. The Board of Selectmen does not have a role in approving or rejecting the plan, but they can submit comments to Mass Housing.

Questioning some of the conclusions drawn by the study, Chairman John Rooney said the board’s letter to the state would include concerns about traffic and safety discussed at last night’s meeting. You can read a recap of the discussion in this article by the Metrowest Daily News.

Depietri seeks to construct five 3-story buildings housing 180 condominium units on land located behind the Red Roof Inn at the intersection of Flagg Road and Route 9. At a meeting in January, Depietri said he was under agreement to purchase 87 acres of undeveloped land in the area, but that the proposed 40B would encompass only 25 of those acres.

While the immediate impact on traffic from the proposed 40B was a concern for residents at the meeting last night, several neighbors said they’re equally concerned about future development on the site.

“This development is small part of a bigger site,” said Planning Board member Don Morris, who lives near the proposed 40B development. “When you add up the rest of site, it gets into a cumulative impact, and it would be significant.”

Chairman John Rooney agreed, saying “I’m concerned about this development, but I’m also concerned about what comes after this development.”

The Board of Selectmen have 30 days to submit comments to the state. Residents can send letters of support or opposition to be included with the comments. Letters can be mailed to or dropped off at the Town House, or emailed to selectmen@southboroughma.com.

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