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BURLINGTON, MA-Northwest Park, a 3.3-million-sf plan to transform an aging business park into a mix of shops, cafes, housing and office space, moved a step closer to reality late Wednesday night. The project, which is being developed by Nordblom Co., won zoning approval in a 79-to-6 vote, at the Burlington town meeting.

The decision means the 127-acre site off Route 3 will be rezoned, allowing locally based Nordblom to construct up to 600,000 sf of retail, 2.3 million sf of office, two 300-room hotels and up to 300 luxury residential units on the property.

“We’re hoping this becomes a project of national notoriety,” Tony Fields, Burlington town planner, tells GlobeSt.com. “This will reposition Burlington in the competition to attract and maintain high quality business in Massachusetts.”

The multimillion-dollar project, designed by Boston architectural firm Elkus Manfredi Architects, will transform the existing 1.4-million-sf office park, now 70% occupied, into a pedestrian-friendly community with a Main Street and a village green reminiscent of a small New England town.

Fields says it will take about a year to permit the site and at least 15 years before the mixed-use project is fully built. Nordblom, which will demolish about 40 buildings during the construction, plans to coordinate the development to ensure that current tenants have space in the new facilities, he says.

“As a Burlington-based company, we feel a responsibility to ensure that our vision will enhance the Town of Burlington, and the experience of our tenants will generate positive, productive and vibrant uses for our community and improve the quality of life for its residents,” says Nordblom principal Peter Nordblom, in a statement. Nordblom did not return calls from GlobeSt.com seeking comment.

Built in 1958, the business park was originally designed to be a cutting-edge suburban office park but as businesses began to demand more amenities, like fitness centers and on-site cafeterias, the once-thriving park became outdated. Nordblom has been headquarted in the park for the last 20 years.

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