By Carol McCracken (Post # 2,213)
Jed Rathband told the planning board this evening that he and his business partner, the controversial Ron Gan, have decided not to develop the Casale’s Auto Sales and Service property on Washington Avenue. That property was to have been central to the development of East Cove Townhomes.” The reason given by Rathband? “market conditions.” Despite this change in plans, the two do support the zone change for the area that was subject of their application. This application had been before the planning board on two previous occasions – August 26th and September 23rd.
Rathband, a real estate agent for KellerWilliams, and developer Gan, had proposed building 14 townhouses at 145-155 Washington Avenue – named East Cove Townhomes. But they needed to find the right zoning to be able to build according to their proposal plans. The current R-6 zoning did not make their development plans feasible. At the September 23rd meeting, Rathband said that they were facing an October 15 deadline to purchase the Casale’s property. Any zone change would not come in time for that deadlne. After that date, the price for the property would escalate dramatically – possibly causing a “different outcome” from what they planned.
Incidentally, the planning board voted to recommend to the City Council that, with several exceptions, the a large portion of Washington Avenue be rezoned to B-1 – “Neighborhood Business”