Ascending Debt

Flashback: Wyman Gordon 2004 & Feldco Development

This parcel consists of 17 acres right off Route 290 and 146. 
 
Feldco Development emerged with conceptual plans to turn the site into a $55 million mix of retail, office and residential components. Feldco wanted to model the site after Eagle Square, a development it did in Providence.


The only thing that was needed was a zoning change from manufacturing to business-general, BG-6, in order to build a $55 million complex of shops, offices and condominiums. The Worcester Planning Board rejected the zone change, Feldco left and the parcel remains vacant.

 

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Editor's Note:   

To all those comments that ask if we wanted to keep this land polluted and empty???   

Maybe if we had simply done the zone change, like we did for Madison, we would have received development offers without having to build a $175 million baseball stadium???

 


 

 

 

 

Comments

David Z. said…
IIRC, Konnie Lukes was a very vocal opponent of this proposal. She wanted the land kept as a manufacturing site to attract another manufacturer for good paying jobs other than cheaper retail jobs. How did that work out?
Bill Randell said…
We are big fan of Konnie, but could not have disagreed more with her on that one. We should have approved the zone change.
Anonymous said…
A baseball analogy, whether it be not changing the zoning for a developer on the hopes of landing a manufacturer or building a ball park on the hopes it spurs development to pay for the ball park, the City swings for the fence but strikes out. Thank you for bringing this to my attention because the next time someone uses the vacant lot response I can at least ask if they knew about this, which I am sure they don't.
Common Sense said…
Konnie was big time right to vote against giving the developer of the Worcester Common Fashion Outlets all the Tifs and Difs.
Common Sense said…
Sent an email to the city manager asking him when the proposed hotel across from Union Station is going to break ground. I think it's been four years we've been waiting!!
Anonymous said…
So has the zoning on this site been changed yet?
Anonymous said…
I don't think the property that the second hotel in Washington Sq is proposed to be built on has been sold to the company yet, never mind any zoning changes that may be required. I think it was more than 4 years ago that this was announced and still nothing happening.

I am not defending Madison but I was just thinking about the timing of other market rate housing that may come on line around the same time as the second residential building and the geography of those housing units. The Mt Carmel and the Cove apartments, if they commence construction as proposed, will be available just before or around the same time as the second residential development. Mt Carmel appears to have ample parking but the Cove does not, but both are within a close walk to Union Station if you work in Boston and can commute. Both are located on streets with lower traffic volume, Mulberry and Green, with more direct access to amenities. If the rents are equivalent for all 3 buildings I think Mt Carmel and the Cove would be head and shoulders ahead of Madison. This all assumes the market is the same as it is now. I think I would be cautious before committing.
Bill Randell said…
In order for Polar Park and all the other proposed developments by Madison, a zoning change had to be approved. To bad we did not do this for Feldco and save ourselves from a 175 million albatross.
Anonymous said…
Common Sense said…
Sent an email to the city manager asking him when the proposed hotel across from Union Station is going to break ground. I think it's been four years we've been waiting!!

That is the same developer that built Homewood Suites across the street. First Bristol

Obviously the pandemic had a giant effect on the proposed new hotel but I also hear that the site is riddled with all kinds of utilities and easements that the city needs to clear before the deal could happen. Why wasn’t that getting done? The city spend 100% of its time on ballpark things and now ballpark fallout

If the city wanted to make that new hotel a priority, it would. It’s a developer that has already proved it can start and finish successful projects. The evidence is right across the street from this parcel.
Anonymous said…
The last comment is spot on but I will state how I understood the comment. The City appears to be more concerned with press conferences, ground breakings or newspaper articles than the development itself. I say this because after reading the comment I did a search on the second hotel and First Bristol and Common Sense is correct the hotel proposal predates the pandemic by almost two years. The fact that the City has not even conveyed the property demonstrates the lack of urgency by the City. While I was searching First Bristol I came across articles about Lake Pharma and them being an anchor in the new biotech park which I do not believe occurred and has been replaced with Wuxi which has been reported on and the City took victory laps. If the development reported on does not happen, no one remembers and it does not cost the City.
Anonymous said…
In one of the previous posts there was a comment about how this is like a puzzle where we have to put the pieces together because the City has not produced an update in a year, coincidentally it was the last time they were looking for more money. After reading the comment about press conferences and news articles do you think the City is smarter than we give them credit for? Are they using (or are the papers in bed with them) to provide a trail for when this project does not work out the way they explained it to us. There are bits and pieces in articles about aspects, delays etc that the City can refer to when the revenues from the development don't meet the bond payments. They can always go back and say "that was reported ..." .Think about it. Additionally, the question about why the WooSox and Madison are not paying taxes arising from their respective leases as required by the law which you posted is still an item I am interested in and the City should explain this to us taxpayers.
Anonymous said…
You are giving the City far too much credit. The issue is lazy reporting. I was reading the comments on the Worcester Business Journal coverage of the residential building being delayed and a commenter posted the Spectrum news report that the building would take months to complete without making any reference to when it was originally scheduled to be finished. That is not reporting it is just repeating. At least the Worcester Business Journal every so often does a story and looks back to what was stated. In the end the City will probably take the path described, not that they planned on it but it will be the only way they can say they have been transparent.
wormtown said…
Question in the Feldco development. Is that land still vacant? If so, has the zoning since been changed? Not sure exactly where this property is.