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Friday, October 20, 2006

Franklin must act to save open space access

FRANKLIN

Access to 400 acres of unspoiled public land could be cut off for residents if Franklin's Town Council doesn't act before its vote to sell industrial land next Wednesday, a former member of the town's Open Space Committee tells Globe West.

The Town Council is selling a 35-acre parcel between Pond Street and Interstate 495, but, as currently planned, the sale would render a large track of Army Corps of Engineers acreage landlocked without public access, former committee member Alan Earls said.

The issue had been a priority for the Open Space Committee for years but was accidentally omitted from the Request for Proposals that was given to developers interested in the land, Earls said.

Earlier this month, the Council heard from three developers who bid more than $4 million each for the property and unveiled sketches of office buildings, a hotel and condominiums on the site.

-- Alison O'Leary Murray

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