We've received a number of great questions from the Ashland community regarding the Arbella at Ashland project, which you'll find below. If your question is not answered here, we'd love to hear from you! Contact us, we're here to help.
What type of housing is this, and how large is the project?
The Arbella at Ashland is an active senior (62+), Class A, luxury / affordable apartment community with 144 garden-style apartments and 36 townhome apartments.
Where is this project located?
The Arbella at Ashland is being proposed on Lot 2 within the Ashland Rail Transit District, directly off of the MBTA Access Road and Route 132 in Ashland, MA The community will be visible from the MBTA access road and will have amazing hill top views of Framingham, Hopkinton and the Sudbury River Valley.
Will this project impact our schools?
No. The Arbella at Ashland is a senior housing community, which means that it will not add children to our public-school system like multi-family 40B housing developments. The proposed development will generate commercial real estate tax revenue from the property that flows directly into the Ashland General Fund and (indirectly) into public schools which will contribute to educating the community’s children.
Will this project add traffic to Ashland?
The Arbella at Ashland will have a minimal impact on Ashland traffic and town roads. Arbella residents (on average) are 75 years of age and do not drive and travel during peak traffic hours between 7:30 - 9:30 AM and 4:30 - 6:30 PM. Arbella residents typically drive between 10:00 AM and 4:00 PM. United Group’s collected data and experience managing senior housing communities determine that the average senior apartment residents own (approximately) one car, and most residents take advantage of the free, on-site shuttle bus service, moving residents around town.
Why is this project right for Ashland?
The Arbella at Ashland follows with the Ashland Strategic Plan and Ashland Housing Production Plan, (see link to attached Executive Summary) which states that Ashland should promote, build and maintain a diverse housing stock including market rate and affordable senior housing (See the Ashland Housing Production Plan Goals and Objectives).
How much of this project will qualify as affordable?
25% of the projects 180 units (45 units) will be affordable at 80% of Area Median Income. All 180 units will count towards Ashland’s Subsidized Housing Inventory thus raising the total affordable housing inventory to approximately 6.2%.
What is a 40B Comprehensive Permit?
Contrary to widespread misguided belief and understanding, the 40B Comprehensive Permitting process is a means to develop and build affordable housing in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Without the 40B Comprehensive Permitting process, tens of thousands of affordable housing units would not have been built in the Commonwealth over the past forty years, providing Massachusetts families (on average) at the eighty percent (80%) of the median income level with affordable housing. 40B Comprehensive Permitting provides housing for families of local police, fire, town employees, school teachers, medical/healthcare employees and other residents who are otherwise being forced to move out of their respective towns in which they grew up in and have resided in due to a lack of affordability. In fact, 40B housing developments provide both “for rent” and “for sale” housing at market rate and below market rates or reduced costs to the benefit of the qualified local town resident. In the case of the Arbella at Ashland, forty-five (45) of the 180 units will be made available to local Ashland seniors aged 62 and older, who qualify as residents earning in the eighty percent (80%) of median income. Affordable monthly rental rates are set collectively by The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development (“DHCD”) and Local Affordable Housing Authority and are not subject to the developer’s discretion.
When will the Arbella at Ashland be available?
The United Group of Companies, Inc. is currently in the planning and permitting process. It is United Group’s goal to complete the permitting and approval process between September 2019 and March of 2020 and commence construction on or about April 1, 2020 with a delivery and occupancy date of late summer or early fall of 2021.
What are the typical unit apartment sizes or square footage?
United Group is proposing to build 144 one and two bedroom garden style (single floor) apartment units that range in size from 800 square feet to 858 square feet for a one bedroom unit; and 1,055 square feet to 1,410 square feet for a two bedroom unit; and 1,703 square feet for a two story, two bedroom townhome apartment rental unit.
Will there be parking spaces available?
There is ample parking for the entire development. On average, each apartment unit will have one parking space. Enclosed parking garages will be available for a monthly fee. Townhome units will have one enclosed parking space and one surface/outside, adjacent parking space.
What amenities are included at Arbella at Ashland?
United Group provides all residents (at no additional charge) with full access to a spectacular, state-of-the-art clubhouse which includes: a health club, yoga and tai chi studio, an indoor pool, a movie theater with stadium seating, a social gathering / game room with fireplace, a hair salon, full-galley kitchen, outdoor barbecue and fire pit areas, outdoor social gathering areas; outdoor activities, including: bocce, pickle ball, bean bag toss; and a resident outdoor gardening area.
Does Arbella at Ashland provide shuttle bus service?
Yes, at no additional charge, United Group provides its residents with a shuttle bus service to the Ashland Commuter Rail Station, local grocery and drug stores, your local doctor’s offices, the farmer’s market, the Ashland Senior Center and to other local destinations.