Middleborough: 223 acres wetlands, forests, residential neighborhood threatened by Lincoln Logistics Warehouse Project

  Katherine Harrelson  Aquifer

We won!!

For now….Our Citizens petition worked. 

We achieved a rezoning of the drive in and most of the surrounding neighborhoods to Rural Residential from General Use at the town meeting with a vote of 139 to 36.


About 223 acres of forests and wetlands are threatened by a massive development project in Middleboro, MA. The multinational real estate developer Lincoln Logistics has proposed a 78-acre industrial warehouse complex. This is within a 223 acre site laced with wetlands, streams, and a vernal pool. About 76 acres of forests will be cleared. The project entails three warehouses with a combined area of 672,800 square feet with 173 loading docks and 679 parking spaces. As of April 2024, Lincoln Logistics withdrew its permit application. Now, residents have a town meeting warrant article to rezone it from “General Use” to rural residential to try to prevent the warehouse development. The area is surrounded by a residential neighbor. There are issues with truck routes through neighborhoods, noise, wetlands, and water supply.

Read more about the fight to stop this proposal here in the Plymouth County Observer (July 24, 2023).

Lincoln Logistics withdraws project, for now

Lincoln Logistics has withdrawn the project, for now. It faces fierce opposition from the town’s residents and a ruling by the Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs about the environmental study. In July, 2023 over 200 letters were sent commenting on the developer’s MEPA environmental impact for the Lincoln Logistics project. Read more below

Citizens’ petition for a zoning change to try to protect the land: Vote on April 22, 2024

In Spring, 2024, a group of residents put an article on the Town Meeting Warrant for April 22, 2024. This would rezone the site from GENERAL USE to RESIDENTIAL RURAL for the former Meadowbrook Drive-In property, as well as the surrounding neighborhoods on Vernon Street, Cordial Road, and Clayton Road is on the Warrant to be voted upon at the April 22nd Town Meeting. VOTERS PLEASE MARK YOUR CALENDARS!

In order for this rezoning to move forward for approval by the State Attorney General this article must pass by a two-thirds vote at THIS APRIL 22ND TOWN MEETING!!

A list of the lot numbers included in this rezoning is below. A map of the area to be rezoned is attached. The Warrant, with all articles will be posted on the town website


Town meeting vote information

Because this article must pass by a two thirds vote, (which means if 100 people attend the meeting then it must get 67 votes, if 200 people attend it needs 134 votes, etc.) THEREFORE IT IS IMPERATIVE that if you want this to pass to protect the environment and our neighborhoods (please!) you must attend and vote in person at the Town Meeting at the Middleboro High School Auditorium at 7PM on Monday, April 22nd. In order to attend YOU MUST BE A REGISTERED TOWN OF MIDDLEBOROUGH VOTER. 1 or 2 votes missed could be the difference of it passing or not.  Please pass on the importance of this to relatives, friends and colleagues who are town residents and registered voters and encourage them to attend to vote.

Prior to theTown Meeting the Planning Board will be holding a Public Hearing on Tuesday, April 16th (arrive before 6:30 PM) in the Select Board Meeting Room at Town HallI. If you would like to show your support for this, or wish to be heard on this matter, you are encouraged to attend. The Select Board will also be discussing and voting to recommend all articles for the Town Meeting Warrant at their Monday April 8th Meeting starting at 7:15 PM. Again, we encourage you to attend.

This area was re-zoned to General Use with a Development Overlay District some years ago and now it is time to rezone it back to Residential for many reasons. A Wetlands protection brochure is below and shows why this is so important and why development such as has been proposed is detrimental to these State protected wetlands and to our neighborhoods.

About the Site: why it’s worth fighting for

The site is worth fighting for to protect is water supply, wetlands and ecosystems:

  • The entire site is identified by the state Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program as Priority Habitat for Rare Species
  • Most is mapped by the state “BioMap” as Prime Forest Land, with areas designated as state-wide and local importance
  • A portion overlies the medium-yield aquifer
  • A certified vernal pool is in the center of the site
  • Indigenous historical sites are known to exist
  • Even though the site is recognized as a high conservation priority, it is still threatened.

State finds environmental study inadequate: Summer 2023

The site requires an environmental study under state law.

July 31, 2023: MEPA denied the certificate, citing several ways in which the project was non-compliant with MEPA law. However, the applicant will submitting a supplemental DEIR to make up the descrepancies.

Read the decision here:

Background on regulatory steps for the warehouse project

The project requires a “Special Permit” under the Town of Middleboro Zoning Bylaws, Section 8.3 “Development Opportunities District” (DOD). This is for three warehouse buildings totaling 672,800 square feet with associated infrastructure on a 150 acre lot, including an access driveway, to be constructed in an easement area, across a 73 acre lot, connecting to Harding Street-State Route 44. The Subdivision Plans are here. Check out the Town’s website Latest News for filings also. In July 2023 over 200 letters were sent commenting on the developer’s MEPA environmental impact for the Lincoln Logistics project.

The project has to comply Middleboro Zoning Bylaw Section 8.3 (DOD) and Section 9. The Planning Board has to hold a public hearing on the special permit. If the permit is issued it can be appealed to court by abutters or “persons aggrieved” by the permit.

Lincoln Logistics applied for a special zoning permit in June 26, 2023. It is here.

Below is a schedule of regulatory steps for the project. At each stage, the public has the opportunity to participate. Some of the permits require a public hearing. This is on hold for now, since Lincoln Logistics withdrew the project as of April, 2024.

1 thought on “Middleborough: 223 acres wetlands, forests, residential neighborhood threatened by Lincoln Logistics Warehouse Project

  1. Add a lifelong resident I find this distressing. That area has been protected for many many years. It contains more life than the town does residents.
    If this is allowed to happen it will be detrimental to the history, the eco system and this town in general. Say no!

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