Gulbankian Farms: Meet the family and read the petition

by Beth Melo on April 12, 2014

As you probably know by now, one of the Warrant Articles up for vote at Wednesday’s Town Meeting is the rezoning of the Gulbankian property at 40 Mount Vickery Road. (If you aren’t aware or need a refresher on this zoning issue, click here for past coverage.)

In preparation for the vote, the family has produced a following video to let voters know who they are. Their story is being played this weekend on the public access channel, and they asked me to share it with readers.

In addition, the family wants people to read the petition behind the Warrant Article, to better understand when it comes time to vote. The letter is below.

GULBANKIAN FAMILY LAND RE-ZONING PETITION

2014 ANNUAL TOWN MEETING – ARTICLE 30

This is a citizens’ petition to rezone land owned by the Gulbankian Family.

The land is an 8.2 acre parcel known as “Gulbankian Farms” located at Cordaville Road and Mount Vickery Road.

On this land are several longstanding agricultural, commercial and light industrial uses: flower shop (50+ years), machine shop (25+ years) and bus depot (50+ years).

Very simply, the proposal is to rezone the land from a Residential District to an Industrial District.

The new district would be the most appropriate framework for zoning regulation of the small businesses located on the property. 

It would also be consistent with the Industrial zone located across Cordaville Road (NSTAR) and across Mount Vickery Road (Town Center Shopping Plaza).

If the property is rezoned, the bus depot now on the land will close and be replaced by a “commercial or light industrial” use.

The replacement uses are limited to activities allowed “as a matter of right” within an Industrial District, subject to Site Plan Review by the Planning Board.

The proposed zoning will support the continuation of small family businesses and help to preserve the rural agricultural character of Southborough.

This Article is supported by the Board of Selectmen and is part of a settlement agreement between the Family and the Town.

1 Michelle Horan April 12, 2014 at 7:01 PM

This video is awesome! Nice job! The Gulbankian family has been an important part of the history of the town of Southborough. It is tragic that they are being put through all of this. This video truly shows the wonderful fabric of their family values and I am honored to have grown up knowing such a beautiful family!

2 David Monroe II April 13, 2014 at 12:11 AM

I have known Mr. Gulbankian for years. He provided me a safe ride to school for many years. I remember the old P.I.E. terminal across the street and the corn fields that stretched for what seemed like miles. When I visited my grandmother Grace on Cordaville Rd. I used to walk down to see the old man in the shack that sold fresh fruits and veggies. He was always quick with a story and a free piece of fruit. Most will not remember these times – many because they did not live in town. I do not live in Southborough any longer. School and work took me away long ago. I know that when my Uncle Jim passed a few years back, I could have called PC Flowers or some other online vendor. No, I called Carolyn who amazingly still remembered me. This family is what Southborough is all about. Not a town. It’s a family! Do the right thing and help these folks who have given so much of themselves.

Respectfully,

Dave Monroe II

3 Gregory Basmadjian April 14, 2014 at 5:15 AM

Instead of allowing the gentrification of this area of Southborough, it is patently clear that the Gulbankian businesses are to be encouraged. These much-needed ventures can only help to sustain the existing community at large and help its growth in a positive way.
I refer to very similar cases being experienced here in Britain, where the Planning /Conservation departments are being more flexible and forward-looking in their policies…the changes have already made an impact on everyday life, giving people hope in these hard times.

4 Barbara Jandrue April 14, 2014 at 8:52 AM

The Gulbankians have given so much to the community and they deserve the right to continue the businesses they work so hard at. Having known them and done business with them for 46 years, they’re like family to me. I hate that they are going through this unnecessary turmoil.

5 Tim Martel April 14, 2014 at 9:20 AM

I agree with the above posters. This family deserves our full support. Please come out to Town Meeting and vote on their behalf!

6 Barbara April 14, 2014 at 9:52 AM

What a great video. It really showed who they are and what they have done for our community through the years. They do not deserve to be going through all this.

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