February 28, 2019

Olympus' $45M R&D facility in Westborough held up after appeal

Courtesy
A rendering of Olympus' planned 150,000-square-foot facility in Westborough.

A $45-million project to bring optical and medical equipment firm Olympus to Westborough could now be tied up in the courts as a resident has filed an appeal on the planning board's decision to approve the project.

The filing will now delay the construction of the 150,000-square-foot research-and-development project for Pennsylvania-based Olympus Corp. of the Americas.

According to a press release from Westborough marketing firm Penta Communications, representing developer Carruth Capital, LLC of Westborough, the appeal was filed on Feb. 19 less than two hours before a 5 p.m. deadline by resident Robert Bertrand.

In the complaint, Bertrand said the planning board in approving a special permit exceeded its authority, calling it arbitrary, capricious and unreasonable.

Carruth Capital along with co-developers Gutierrez Co. of Burlington and a host of other subsidiary entities have responded with a motion to dismiss Bertrand's complaint, filed on Tuesday.

In that motion, the entitis say Bertrand fails to make a sound legal standing and, more importantly, say Bertrand is not an abutter to the property and lives more than two miles from the development.

The permit was granted to allow for the reduction of open space and the increased building height of up to 95 feet.

The property at 800 West Park Drive is undeveloped but has been prepared for future construction.

According to a property flier, Carruth Capital and Gutierrez Co. want to eventually build out the master-planned 153-acre Westborough Office Park to include more than 1.1 million square feet of office space.

The town in January approved a tax-increment-financing agreement with Olympus for a 50-percent real estate tax exemption in the first year of the agreement with that figure falling 10 percent each year until years five through 15, when that exemption would be 10 percent.

For personal property taxes, that exemption would start at 25 percent and fall 5 percent each year until year six when the exemption ends.

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