This Day in Norwood History- September 8

Polaroid Ready To Expand Again

9 Buildings… $9 Million… 4000 Jobs

By DONALD WHITE
Science-industry Reporter


Wed, Sep 8, 1965 – 28 · The Boston Globe (Boston, Massachusetts) · Newspapers.com

Polaroid is planning a nine-building, $9 million film-manufacturing complex in Norwood which may eventually boost the company’s work force by 4000.

Forbes Estate, 8 204-acre tract on the Norwood-Westwood line, is the site for the proposed expansion, which hinges upon town approval of zoning changes at a Sept. 23 meeting.

Polaroid has an option on the land and is in a hurry to begin building. Company officials want construction on the first building to begin by November and be completed by July.

Why the haste?

Because Polaroid’s existing film-making plants are finding it hard to keep up with demand.

In fiscal ’64, film sales outstripped camera revenue lor the first time. Of last year’s sales of $138 million, more than half was from film.

Waltham where the company has 75 acres and employs about 1700.

The new complex, which would augment the Waltham facility, would be built up gradually over a 10-year period according to Joseph W. Gibson, manager of Polaroid’s real estate division.

Forbes Estate is off Route 1A in Norwood and the package that Polaroid seeks includes 30 acres in Westwood. Current plans, however, call for all building to be in Norwood.

At present the property is zoned for residential use. If the change is okayed, the town will be a big financial winner for at current tax and assessment rates a $1 million building yields $36,000 in tax revenue.

Polaroid, founded by Dr. Edwin Land in 1937. is undergoing a period of rapid expansion both in the U.S. and overseas.

At the annual meeting of stockholders in April Dr. Land spoke of a new film plant in Holland to supply the Common Market and another in Scotland to serve Commonwealth countries, both this year. New overseas sales organizations are also being added.

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