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BELLINGHAM, MA-A developer’s quest to build a mall here was frustrated after a group of local activists convinced the town Planning Board to reject the company’s request for site-plan approval.

Ryan Development wanted to develop 33,000 sf of office space and 13,000 sf of retail space on an 11-acre site next to an elementary school. But a number of local residents–including parents of students at the school–were concerned about the increase in traffic and their opposition helped sway the vote three to two against approval of the plan.

Reportedly, Ryan Development plans to return to the town with a revamped set of plans that would include a residential complex with affordable units. Because the number of affordable-housing units in Bellingham falls short of state requirements, Ryan does not require planning-board approval to develop a residential complex with an affordable housing component.

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