Watertown Man Appealing CVS Development Drops Suit

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{Updated May 29 at 11:14 a.m.}

The man who filed an appeal against the Zoning Board of Appeal’s decision to approve the CVS in Coolidge Square has dropped his suit in State Land Court after an agreement deal with the developer.

David Peckar lives on Wells Avenue, across the street from the back of the proposed CVS at the corner of Mt. Auburn and Arlington streets. He filed suit against the project saying that that project would negatively impact his home and neighborhood (see details here).

He recently told his neighbors that he had dropped the suit.

“I regret that I have to inform you all that, after long and serious consideration, I have decided to rescind the appeal that I filed in court regarding the proposed CVS,” Peckar wrote in an email to his neighbors.

The Watertown Tab spoke with Peckar who said the case had been settled “to the agreement of all parties” though he declined to provide further details about the agreement.

The suit focused on the added traffic, changes in ways trucks unload in the parking lot along Wells Avenue, and increase of noise and light due to the removal of the Elk’s Club building. He also alleged that the town, specifically the Community Development and Planning Department, was biased in the case because it had been promised millions of dollars of mitigation work as a condition for approval of the project. Finally, he said the ZBA did not let the public have its say because comments were cut off before the vote was made.

Peckar said he made the decision after attending some pretrial conferences with the judge and the developers of the site. The judge discussed the types of evidence that would and would not be considered, and Peckar said that found his argument would have been hurt.

“… (B)ased on what information would and would not be considered by the court, many of the arguments that I had made in the original complaint that I had filed and that I had also been planning to make in court, would not be admissible for a variety of reasons,” Peckar wrote. “This would in fact limit my arguments substantially and weaken my case.”

Also at that pretrial conference, attorneys for developer Robert Korff also filed to have an accelerated court schedule.

“In the end, the judge decided that an accelerated schedule would be appropriate for this case and it was determined that the pre-trial conference (where all information needs to be presented prior to the trial) would be in mid September with a trial date set for mid October this year,” Peckar wrote. “This date for trial was significantly earlier than I had been previously led to expect from earlier court documents that had the trial date listed for about 18 months instead of the now 6 months.”

Peckar said the preparation for the trial would be too much for him to undertake.

“Looking at this scope of work, it became clear to me that, in order to complete all these tasks given the schedule that had just been established, it would take every bit of my spare time and more for the entire summer,” Peckar wrote. He added that he has two young daughters who can only visit during the summer, so the preparation for the trial would have severely limited his time with them.

Peckar thanked those who supported him in his appeal against the CVS and opposition, which started months before the ZBA’s decision.

To all of you who have supported me in my efforts to fight the proposed CVS, please accept my heartfelt gratitude,” Peckar wrote. “To those of you who may have been counting on this appeal going forward and who may be disappointed by this decision that I have made to rescind the appeal, I would ask for your understanding that I have done absolutely everything within my abilities to fight this fight, but at this point I have taken it as far as I can and must let it go.”

2 thoughts on “Watertown Man Appealing CVS Development Drops Suit

  1. Just what Watertown does NOT need, another CVS. This is the best use of this prime property? Come on Watertown Selectmen. We deserve better.

  2. Boycott CVS. Don’t buy from CVS and call their corporate office 401-765-1500 and ask for the Executive Offices. Tell them you will not purchase from CVS until the drop plans for the East Watertown store. Mr. Gellerman is right. This is not a good project for Watertown or the East End.

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