THE METRO WEST DAILY NEWS – The Marlborough Economic Development Corp. on Monday night submitted a vision plan to the City Council that calls for changes along the eastern part of the Rte. 20 corridor to attract business and boost property values.
The plan’s implementation would establish the area – from the Rte. 20’s intersection with Farm Road east to the Sudbury border – as the Wayside District. The plan’s execution would bring about road improvements with better access for cyclists and pedestrians, target development to certain parcels best suited for it, rework intersections and establish a zoning overlay district.
Tim Cummings, MEDC’s executive director, said the plan has been in the works for the last six months. The report was put together by consultants from Vanasse Hangen Brustlin and RKG Associates. A steering committee with public officials and local business owners met monthly throughout the process, Cummings said.
The plan calls for a number of potential improvements. The consultants called for two “gateways” on either end of the district, as well as measures like common signs to distinguish the area.
“You’re trying to create a sense of place,” Cummings said Tuesday.
The plan also calls for upgrades to roadways and intersections, which would have to be done in tandem with the state Department of Transportation, which controls the road.
“It’s a lot of roadway improvements that we’ll need to get cooperation on from the state,” Cummings said.
Other measures include an increase in inter-parcel connections, so people could get from one business to another without having to get back onto Rte. 20 and add to congestion, as well as connections looping into local trails.
The plan also identifies two development sites – one on the Post Road Auto Parts site and the other at the driving range – that are underused and would be good targets for redevelopment.
The MEDC also recommended that the city implement a new zoning overlay district in the area to bring uniformity to the corridor. The Wayside Overlay District would lay over certain parts of the five zoning districts currently in the area.
The study, Cummings said, cost $69,000. Cummings said City Council President Patricia Pope and ward councilors Joe Delano and Rick Jenkins were especially helpful in the process.
The Urban Affairs Committee will begin its review of the plan at an upcoming meeting.
This story originally appeared here.