2 former Christmas Tree Shop sites in New England could be turned into housing

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Furniture seller moving into old Christmas Tree Shops location on Cape Cod

Furniture seller moving into old Christmas Tree Shops location on Cape Cod


SHREWSBURY – Two former Christmas Tree Shops locations in New England are being eyed as potential spots for new housing.

As the Community Advocate newspaper reported, the prospect of using Olde Shrewsbury Village plaza near the intersection of Route 20 and Route 9 to fulfill MBTA zoning requirements came up last week at a Shrewsbury Planning Board meeting. The Christmas Tree Shop there closed last summer when the iconic New England retail chain went out of business.

Shrewsbury’s Planning and Economic Development Director Christopher McGoldrick said more details about the proposed project will be revealed at a public hearing in March.

“It meets the requirements and meets the spirit of the MBTA zoning and I think it will hopefully spur some really good redevelopment projects in the community,” he said.    

Massachusetts law requires municipalities near rapid transit stops to zone for multi-family housing. Shrewsbury must permit at least 1,500 multi-family units under the law. It has proved controversial in some communities – Milton voters on Wednesday rejected an MBTA zoning plan, which the state says will cut the town off from “significant” grant funding. 

And in New Hampshire, the Portsmouth Herald reports that an apartment development is being considered for an old Christmas Tree Shops site at 100 Durgin Lane. Portsmouth Planning Board documents say the plan calls for 360 rental housing units there. 

As retailers like the Christmas Tree Shops and Bed Bath & Beyond go out of business, their empty buildings aren’t staying vacant for long. At the old Sagamore Christmas Tree Shops, known for its signature windmill off Route 6, an outdoor furniture store is moving in for the next eight months. 

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