Over 60 housing units proposed for Edgartown

The development still has some way to go through permitting, but it represents a significant amount of housing near downtown Edgartown.

A preliminary rendering of the project site. —Courtesy of the Atwood Company

Local developers, in collaboration with a group of property owners in Edgartown, are seeking to create a new housing development on Upper Main Street.

Slated for 3.1 acres behind Donaroma’s Nursery and Landscaping’s storefront at 270 Upper Main St., the proposed project, Edgartown Gardens, will consist of up to 66 apartments, roughly 25 percent of which are expected to be affordable under Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 40B.

Project developers say the centralized location of the proposed project is ideal, as it provides walkable access to a number of town services, public transit, and a grocery store. 

Although the preliminary proposal suggests that the development would largely consist of age-restricted affordable and market-rate housing units, William Cumming, of Falmouth-based development firm Atwood Co., says specifics regarding potential ownership of the apartments are subject to change.

Plans are still “evolving,” Cummings told The Times in a recent phone call. 

He says project leaders expect to engage in a thorough discourse with various Island and town stakeholders; he anticipates that there will be compromises and possible shifts in the plan as the project progresses. 

Because housing instability affects residents of all ages and economic groups, Cumming said, plans are to identify where the most need is, and provide a solution that could really make a dent in the housing crisis.

Edgartown Gardens would replace Donaroma’s Nursery’s wholesale operation in Edgartown, as the landscaping’s wholesale business, along with its roughly 100 employees and 40 trucks, will be relocating to a new home base in Oak Bluffs.

For this reason, Cumming said, any concerns about increased traffic congestion ought to be reconsidered, as there will likely be less traffic compared with the nursery-related business.

With a long road still ahead, the project is expected to receive a determination from MassHousing regarding Chapter 40B approval before the end of the year. 

Although the Martha’s Vineyard Commission’s land use subcommittee has greenlit the conducting of a traffic study, the regional planning agency has not yet reviewed the proposed development in its entirety. 


  1. Traffic is the main issue. Saying a nursery has more traffic is very misleading than potentially 120 resident cars, service traffic, and guest, could exceed 160 trips a day. Find an alternate access and then it could work.

    • Have you ever done a traffic study that shows how many cars enter and exit the parking lot there? I think you would be shocked at the number of vehicles that use that property. This appears to be a well thought out plan taking numerous factors into consideration including changing the traffic flow to a less congested area and at the same time providing much needed housing that everyone says is unobtainable. It’s a win/win situation if the facts presented are on point.

  2. Another 16 plus units of affordable housing coming into the pipeline, and done without the need to tax Vineyard homeowners on their nest eggs. The housing bank bill is unnecessary and will juice the development of AH beyond sustainable levels. Let’s protect our natural environment, and say “No” to the housing bank bill. Keep Our Island Green

    • I agree. I moved here 30+ years ago and realized that I, with my wife and 2 children, increased the demands on the Island’s infrastructure. Of that I am aware and of which I am ashamed. I ran the Visiting Nurse Service and my wife taught in the public school system. When my two children graduated from MVRHS, they went off to college and never returned. I’d like to think that we made a contribution that exceeds our burden.

  3. Best to ask who will actually own and manage the apartments. It seems the developers will build, but not own. If the Town is the owner, then this sounds like the “projects” of old and taxpayers will end up footing some significant bills for maintenance and repairs. The old saying Nobody washes a rental car applies to apartments, too. Landlords have to have adequate rent to provide for maintaining the property. Best to ask a LOT of questions.

  4. The greed of these people putting this forward is amazing. This group has plenty of money all ready and they want more to the detriment of the island. And they do it right out in front of us by going the 40B direction. Shameful on the local boy who never has enough and this is no Garden party they are planning it is a money making adventure for them. If this group really wants to help the island it is better to find another location that is not at the triangle. Just say no to Chase road traffic nightmare which has been tried before and failed. But now traffic is suppose to be ok because it is for so called affordable housing.

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