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Biotech group opposes rezoning

The state’s largest biotechnology trade group sent a letter­ to Cambridge city officials on Monday to oppose a proposal by neighborhood activists that would change zoning in an area around Central Square, potentially blocking large-scale development or expansion plans for life sciences­ companies.

In the letter, sent to the chairmen of the City Council’s ordinance committee and the Planning Board, Robert K. Coughlin, president of the Massachusetts Biotechnology Council, noted the city is home to more than 110 life sciences companies that were drawn to nearby research universities and hospitals.

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“The life sciences industry has always sought to be a good neighbor and active corporate citizen in the life of Cambridge,” Coughlin wrote. “With this commitment in mind, we encourage you to defeat the downzoning proposal. We feel that it would restrict the kind of sustainable development that brings tremendous benefits to the people of Cambridge.”

Robert Weisman can be reached at
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