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Marlborough commercial vacancy rates down

METRO WEST DAILY NEWS – With more than a dozen companies moving to or expanding in the city in 2015, Marlborough’s commercial vacancy rate fell for the fourth consecutive year.

Last year, Oyo Sports, New England Cryogenic Center Inc., LFB Corp., Mitutoyo and Tetra Tech were among the companies that moved to the city, trimming Marlborough’s overall commercial vacancy rate from 14 percent in 2014 to 12 percent in 2015. In 2012, the vacancy rate was 22 percent, according to the Marlborough Economic Development Corporation’s recently released 2015 report.

While the city’s office vacancy rate remained at 18 percent, it had declined the previous three years. Four years ago, 34 percent of the city’s offices were dormant, according to the report.

Due to the influx of corporations moving to Marlborough the past four years, more than 5,000 new jobs have been created, dropping the city’s unemployment rate to 3.7 percent, lower than the national average of 5 percent. In 2014, Marlborough’s unemployment rate was 4.2 percent.

“The numbers and accolades tell the story,” Tim Cummings, Marlborough Economic Development Corporation executive director, wrote in the report. “Marlborough has become the place to be. As companies of all sizes continue to set up shop here, the city’s business community and employment market have grown exponentially.”

Along with attracting large corporations, the MEDC has also recently taken steps to help the small business community thrive. Last week, the agency launched a revolving loan fund, which provides gap financing for prospective business owners to launch new companies and existing entrepreneurs seeking to expand and create jobs.

Looking ahead to 2016, Marlborough Economic Development Corporation officials prioritized filling empty commercial and industrial space by promoting the city’s new downtown village district and its proximity to the Interstate 495 corridor, supporting small business growth and making transportation more accessible.

Mayor Arthur Vigeant also eyed having more Marlborough residents work at companies within the city.

“It’s been difficult to tie Marlborough people to Marlborough jobs,” he said.

The mayor is proud of the strides the city has made to fill vacant commercial space and is hopeful the growth will continue in 2016.

“Obviously it’s been a great four years,” he said. “We need to continue doing that.”

This article by Jeff Malachoski originally appeared here.