March 17, 2009 - Mayor Domenic J. Sarno today announced that the Indian Motorcycle building and the former Mason Square Fire Station have been designated a Priority Project by MassDevelopment.
“This designation will enable the City to advance an overall redevelopment plan for the Indian Motorcycle building and the former Mason Square Fire Station”, said Mayor Sarno.
Both properties are located along the State Street Corridor in the heart of Mason Square and were identified as target development projects by the State Street Alliance in July 2008. Since then, the City has been working with the State Street Alliance, the affiliation of over 60 business, community and government representatives who oversaw the preparation of the privately funded redevelopment program to advance implementation of this important economic development initiative.
The redevelopment concept for this site recommends treating the existing Indian Motorcycle A building, the adaptive reuse of the Mason Square Fire Station and the adaptive reuse of the vacant Indian Motorcycle B building as a single project, which will allow for a coordinated approach to parking and financing. The City of Springfield owns both the Fire Station and Indian Motorcycle “B” and started an environmental site assessment program last fall.
Mayor Sarno indicated that the MassDevelopment funding will provide critical funding to advance environmental remediation and site preparation activities. He indicated that the City would be soliciting proposals for the redevelopment of these two key Mason Square properties once this work advanced. He thanked the Springfield Business Development Corporation and the Office of Planning and Economic Development for their cooperative efforts in the preparation and submittal of this application.
MassDevelopment Designates 4 "Priority" Properties
MassDevelopment has selected four municipally-owned properties in Boston, Chelmsford, New Bedford and Springfield for low-cost loans of up to $2 million under the agency's Brownfields Priority Project Program.
In Boston, the city-owned, 2.6-acre site in Dudley Square contains two abandoned buildings, the former Modern Electroplating facility and the former Boston Children's Service Center of Roxbury. The site is known to have substantial contamination. The city has allocated funding to plan for the redevelopment, including funds to support the design and construction of a new Area B-2 Police Station which will abut a mix of retail, office and parking uses.
The Chelmsford site is a 3-acre property that once housed the Silicon Transistor Corp., a manufacturer of hermetically packaged semiconductors for technology applications. The city recently secured a 43D expedited permitting designation for the site, and work is underway to assess environmental contamination present in the soil and an existing 35,000-square-foot building. The city plans to complete a financial analysis and conceptual redevelopment plan for the property in fall 2009.
The former home of the Dartmouth Finishing Co. in New Bedford is a 4.3-acre site. Since 1997, city officials have worked to acquire the property through tax title, remove on-site hazardous materials and demolish existing structures. Additional assessment work is currently underway, after which the city will issue a request for development proposals for the remediated site.
The city-owned, half-acre site in Springfield's State Street corridor contains two vacant buildings that once housed a motorcycle manufacturing plant and a neighborhood fire station. The property is one of seven priority development projects identified by the State Street Alliance, an affiliation of 60 stakeholders located on and around State Street. The city secured a grant from the Environmental Protection Agency to fund initial assessment work at the site. The city plans to solicit developers in 2009 and convey the site to the selected group in 2010.
Created in August 2006, the Priority Project Program designates high-impact parcels to attract developer interest in reuse that would be viable but for environmental contamination. The selected communities are eligible for up to $2 million in low-cost, flexible brownfields remediation funding, $1.5 million more than the $500,000 available under standard program rules. The agency will release the remediation funds after a developer has been identified by the municipality.