To the Editor:
The Roxbury Planning Commission held a public hearing on January 23 to comment on the Draft Plan of Conservation and Development. The final plan will be discussed at a Planning Commission meeting on February 13. No further public comment will be permitted.
The commission has recommended co-housing or condominium developments of up to 10 units per approved site to attract young families, town volunteers, increase Region 12 enrollment and offer senior citizens affordable housing options.
Within Roxbury’s adjoining towns that make up Regional School District 12, Washington and Bridgewater have approximately 100 condominiums combined. Today, there are no students living in these apartments attending Region 12 schools.
As a developer, I estimate an inexpensively built condominium, including land, closing costs and a minimal 10 percent developers profit would need to sell for over $450,000. Is this an affordable option for young families and seniors?
Throughout Roxbury there are 117 parcels with more than 25 acres.
Assuming 10 percent are suitable for condominium development, there would be 11 or 12, 10-unit developments. Each complex would require paved parking for 20 cars, emergency vehicles and access in addition to 24-hour security lighting.
The Roxbury landscape scattered with condominiums might be great for the town’s tax base but our neighboring towns’ experience show that this plan will not achieve its promised goal. “Roxbury is going to change whether you like it or not, market conditions will determine whether anything comes of this” said two commission members.
Is it reasonable to gamble with Roxbury’s unique character by opening the door to this type of development when the evidence shows it will not succeed at attaining the stated goals?
I urge the Planning Commission to remove this recommendation from the Plan of Conservation and Development.