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News Updates: December 2004

All updates from the month of December 2004 are listed below.

Updates for December 24, 2004
Written by Justin on December 24, 2004 at 4:56PM

Updates on the Lowe's approval....

  • While no approval was made on the Lowe's as predicted by the MWDN, a good discussion took place at the Planning Board meeting on December 21, there has been considerable progress in the planning process. However, there is definately a good reason why it was not approved: the store's entrance from the connector road. Basically, Lowe's wanted to leave the existing entrance in place from the Verizon that would have made shoppers have to drive down Rte. 30 and onto Old Connecticut Path in order to get to Stop and Shop or BJ's. Many members of the planning board, as do I, found this to be unsatisfactory in bringing Lowe's traffic onto main streets in order to go between adjacent buildings. A second option, essentially a basic 4-way stop where Target and Lowe's will meet on the connector road, is being persued, but apparently it is being held up due to Stop and Shop's reluctance to allow some of their land to be used toward a better and straighter connector road, with a real sidewalk. However, Lowe's is making progress as of late with getting a right-of-way from Stop and Shop, and this appears to be one of the last details in the project before it gets approved. The Planning Board will meet again on January 11 to discuss the project. The MWDN has a story online, read all about the latest developments in the Lowe's soap opera at http://www.metrowestdailynews.com/localRegional/view.bg?articleid=85901.
Send your thoughts and ideas to the feedback link as usual, and Happy Holidays from Framingham/Natick Retail!

dates for December 17, 2004
Written by Justin on December 17, 2004 at 10:57PM

Natick Mall updates....

  • There have been two recent stories about the Natick Mall's proposed and approved expansion in the MWDN as of late. First off, the mall is not planning to connect the current mall to the expansion for the time being. This makes the mall separate in the eyes of the planning board, and this also takes care of Federated's claim against the mall as it has nothing to do with the existing mall. General Growth also stated that they are making progress with the Town of Framingham and the self-storage place in their appeal of the property. GGP now thinks that they can have the mall open by fall 2007, about a year later then previously expected.
  • After the meeting on the night of December 14th, however, little changes were made. First off, a parking lot was removed from the corner of Speen Street and Flutie Pass, and the Neiman Marcus was moved closer to Speen Street. A reason was not given for this move, but could it possibly regard moving the property further from the Framingham town line? Apparently it went on for such a while that the MWDN had to leave the meeting in order to get the paper published for that morning. Anyhow, the planning board also went bananas about the banner advertising the Natick Mall's proposed condominiums on Route 9, because it gives the appearance that the condos are already approved. The Natick Mall's people rebutted stating that they only wanted to build anticipation for the project, but will never the less take down the banner next week. The two stories are online at http://www.metrowestdailynews.com/localRegional/view.bg?articleid=85418 and http://www.metrowestdailynews.com/localRegional/view.bg?articleid=85336.
  • Also, some pictures added of the new Office Depot and Circuit City.

Updates for December 9, 2004

Written by Justin on December 9, 2004 at 8:29PM

Lowe's may be coming to Framingham sooner than previously expected....

  • A story in the MWDN today states that the Lowe's project is coming together at last. The Planning Board members are finally finding a palate that suits their tastes, and even the town's consultant for the project stated that the project is now fitting expectations. Lowe's design team has now satisfied the board, but it's not over yet. There's still at least one meeting left, and that one will be on December 21st. It will be on local TV like most of their hearings, channel 13 on RCN and channel 9 for Comcast. (Natick and everywhere else can watch online at http://www.framinghamma.org/web/pages/streaming_video/RCNLive.ram). The story is online too, at http://www.metrowestdailynews.com/localRegional/view.bg?articleid=84877.
  • A revamped Caldor/CVS page is up, along with TerraServer imagery for the Rte. 30 Mall page

Updates for December 8, 2004
Written by Justin on December 8, 2004 at 10:29PM

Just a quick update on the site.

  • An entirely revamped Sherwood Plaza page is now up, with pictures taken today, TerraServer imagery, and much more information in a more organized layout. If you have any suggestions on the page or the layout, e-mail me using the feedback link on the side of the page.
  • Additionally, two pictures of the new Circuit City are up on the Loews Theaters/Natick Promenade page, although they aren't really that great. Either way, the La-Z-Boy Furniture Gallery is clearly under construction and should be completed soon, as job postings are online for the new Natick store.

Updates for December 3, 2004
Written by Justin on December 3, 2004 at 11:09PM

Just a quick update now on area retail...

  • The new Office Depot at Shopper's World opened yesterday, December 2, and the MWDN reports that Office Depot made many monitary and backpack donations to area groups and agencies. The story reports that it uses the new Millenium2 format that Office Depot has been spreading throughout it's stores, and is similar to Staples' Dover store format, which can be seen at it's Worcester St. location in Natick and it's newly converted Worcester Rd. location near Framingham Center. Staples denied that they're afraid of the new store, as they have seen Office Depot desert the area after failing at it's Cochituate Rd. store, which has become the new Filene's Basement. The story http://www.metrowestdailynews.com/businessNews/view.bg?articleid=84434.
  • On the subject of Office Depot, their former Framingham location now has a page at Framingham/Natick Retail. Just check out the Rte. 30 Mall page on the sidebar.

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