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Equity Office Properties Refuses To Join BID In Downtown Crossing

It seems like BID, Boston's first attempt at a business improvement district, may have its first obstacle ahead of it. The Boston Herald reports that Equity Office Properties which is Boston's largest commercial property owner, has decided not to participate in Downtown Crossings' BID program. While a Boston real estate lawyer can explain the details of the BID program, the program is intended to help struggling commercial areas in Boston through initiatives such as security, cleaning, marketing, and improvements.

If Equity Office Properties had agreed to join BID, it would have contributed close to $700,000 annually. There is a total of 16 percent of BID property owners who have declined to pay BID fees. These fees are on top of existing property taxes. However, the BID program has 84 percent of property owners who are willing to contribute close to $3.1 million in the first year. Rosemary Sansone, president of the Downtown Crossing Partnership told the Boston Herald:

We're very disappointed that (Equity) opted out. We thought we had made progress with them - persuading them as Boston's largest commercial property owner that they needed to be an active and involved member in the BID. Obviously, we haven't convinced them.

While BID could have had close to $4.3 million if all of the property owners had opted for the program, BID organizers are happy that most owners have have chosen to participate.

Sansone told the Boston Herald, "The good news is that the vast majority of property owners are with us."

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