The topic of a new public safety facility to provide for the needs of the growing city came up at Monday evening’s city council meeting.
The city needs such a facility.
With an expected crush of development coming in what will be the former Exxon site, and the same one day to take place on the Exelon Property, it is high time to pursue this integral part of the development scheme on Lower Broadway.
Out of necessity it should be a large facility housing fire, police and rescue elements in the area of the Encore Boston Harbor Casino and Hotel.
Councilor Wayne Matewsky has set the ball rolling with that suggestion, which took place before the council at his request. Such a facility built in today’s dollars would cost as much as $30 – $40 million to build and to outfit with automobiles, fire apparatus and rescue ambulances. It should also be equipped with a cell block as well as a triage and training area.
The package needs to include a great part of the funding to cover the cost of manning of the facility.
It is easy to see the need for as many as 40-60 new firefighters and police officers, ambulance drivers and administrative personnel.
There might very well be billions more in new development and tens of thousands of men and women working in the high tech and medical research industries working and living here on new streets in thousands of new units in dozens of new buildings.
Wynn Corporation is ready to ink a sale with Exxon for the sprawling 96 acre industrial site in Everett, according to a variety of gaming industry, real estate and media sources.
Wynn is also believed to be considering putting under agreement the Distrigas property as well as Exelon’s power plant, which will be closing in 2024.
If such an assemblage were put together, Wynn would become the owner of an extraordinary group of rare urban properties within one mile of Boston that would have an abundant number of possibilities ranging to billions of dollars of new development.
The only caveats to these likely acquisitions is that they are all polluted and will require environmental mitigation.
Such mitigation could cost as much as $100 million or more.
The Encore Casino and Hotel environmental mitigation cost upwards of $30 million – and this was for 33 acres that was purchased for $35 million by Wynn Resorts.
News reports emanating from the mayor’s office that Exelon might be selling their property along the Everett waterfront across from the Encore site is a bit hopeful, according to Exelon’s public statements on the matter.
Exelon is staying put with its surviving power plants until 2024 at a minimum.
When the final two energy generators are closed down at that time, Exelon will be looking to the best possible use or reuse of their land – most of which would need to be remediated.
Wynn Resorts has previously expressed an interest in acquiring the property for the purpose of expanding the entertainment and hotel signature on this once useless and polluted Broadway industrial district.
The city’s second largest taxpayer and source of income is in ongoing negotiations with the Everett assessor’s department to redo its assessment for the 70 acres of land it owns along the Mystic River, according to a source familiar with the negotiations.
Exelon owns the land and the giant oil-fired generators Mystic 8 and 9 which are scheduled to be retired in 2024.
When those two generators are sitting idly, the value of the land they occupy is not worth as much as when the generators are running and generating millions of dollars in revenues.
This is how Exelon will look at the re-evaluation.
The city’s opinion will be just the opposite.
The city’s reassessment is likely to show the value of the land has gone up greatly since the TIF was signed twenty years ago.