Optometrist settles with Lowell over eminent domain taking

“ather than relocate, an optometrist operating in the building expected to be taken by eminent domain for the Lowell High School project will retire, according to city officials.

The city reached an agreement with a tenant of 75 Arcand Drive who opted to “discontinue his business” and receive $129,820 for loss of personal property in a settlement, City Manager Eileen Donoghue wrote in a memo to City Council. During the City Council meeting Tuesday night, officials identified the tenant as optometrist Dr. George Montminy.

This is the first settlement approved by the Bureau of Relocation for 75 Arcand Drive. Under state law, the bureau is required to approve any settlement over $50,000.

Donoghue said the city is must pay compensation, regardless of whether the doctor moves or retires.

According to City Solicitor Christine O’Connor, the city acquired equipment from the optometry office in the agreement, which the city can sell to recoup costs.

Last fall, Peter W. Sleeper Associates in Arlington estimated relocation expenses for the optometry and dental practices in the building would cost $3.5 million to $4.5 million. The consultant for the doctors’ estimated around $6 million.

Both estimates exceed the $2.6 million loan order approved by City Council to pay for the property.”
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Dobbins, Elizabeth. Lowell Sun 26 MArch 2019.