Funding Addresses Economic Development Challenges

First National Bank Building in Greenfield, Mass.

Boston – MassDevelopment has awarded up to $330,000 in funding for 14 cities and towns through its Real Estate Services Technical Assistance Program to address site-specific and district-wide economic development challenges.

Under this program, through a combination of in-house expertise and contracts with consultants, MassDevelopment works with municipal officials, planners, local stakeholders, and others to address priority planning and development projects through creative solutions and steps. Awards will support public surplus property reuse, including feasibility analyses and Requests for Proposals/Qualifications (RFP/Q) development, and the implementation of local district management tools such as Business Improvement Districts and District Improvement Financing.

FY22 Real Estate Services Technical Assistance Awarded Projects:

Town of Abington – $25,000

The Town of Abington will use this award for a feasibility study to evaluate the Center School at 65 Thaxter Ave., including infrastructural and abatement needs and the potential to transform the building into transit-oriented affordable housing.

City of Attleboro – $5,000

The City of Attleboro will use this award for a preliminary analysis of the reuse and restoration of the East Attleborough Academy Building at 28 Sanford St., which, constructed in 1842, is the last remaining building from the original village of Attleborough and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

City of Brockton – $25,000

The City of Brockton will use this award for the planning and implementation of a Business Improvement District (BID) that encompasses downtown Brockton.

Town of Buckland – $10,000

The Town of Buckland will use this award to prepare a former Town Highway Department garage at 50 Conway St. for private acquisition and redevelopment.

City of Fall River – $20,000

The City of Fall River will use this award to study the historic downtown retail and business core of the city focusing on underutilized parking lots and their redevelopment potential.

City of Fitchburg – $45,000

The City of Fitchburg will use this award to repurpose the former Wanoosnoc Road School building located on seven-plus acres at 44 Wanoosnoc Rd. near downtown Fitchburg. The City will assess existing conditions and engage the community to determine the highest and best use in order to develop a competitive RFP for the redevelopment of the property.

Town of Foxborough – $25,000

The Town of Foxborough, through the Foxborough Housing Authority, seeks to lease 16 acres at the intersection of Walnut Street and Route 140 to a private developer for the development of affordable senior housing, and will use this award to analyze responses to its RFP.

City of Gardner – $10,000

The City of Gardner will use this award for a study to support District Improvement Financing (DIF) that will address sewer infrastructure needs across non-contiguous areas including the downtown and the Mill Street Corridor Urban Renewal Areas.

City of Greenfield – $25,000

The City of Greenfield will use this award to develop an RFP for the First National Bank Building, the last unresolved property in the city’s Bank Row Urban Renewal District, targeting a project that will further revitalize the downtown.

City of Lynn – $55,000

The City of Lynn will use a $5,000 award for a planning effort to coordinate state and local agencies to identify a path forward for viaducts owned by the MBTA that are located across 10,419 square feet under the MBTA Commuter Rail in downtown Lynn.

The City of Lynn, through the Lynn Economic Development and Industrial Corporation, will use a $50,000  award to fund a district masterplan to support the redevelopment of the former Whyte’s Enterprise Laundry site at 83 Willow St. and increase investment at other public and private parcels on Willow St. The City seeks to re-densify the urban core, through a mix of retail, housing, and office uses that contribute to its vitality and potential as an “18-hour” downtown economy.

Town of Montague – $35,000

The Town of Montague will use this award to complete a property reuse assessment of the Strathmore Mill Complex at 20 Canal St. that will help advance redevelopment of the canal district’s north end. MassDevelopment also provided an award from the Brownfields Redevelopment Fund in 2019 ($250,000) to support redevelopment of the Strathmore Mill Complex.

City of Revere – $10,000

The City of Revere will use this award to complete a reuse assessment for the McKinley School building at 65 Yeamans St., with the goal to have nonprofit or for-profit entities partner with the city to use the space for educational or workforce-development programming.

Town of Seekonk – $25,000

The Town of Seekonk will use this award to develop an opportunities and constraints analysis in support of the redevelopment of the 7.8-acre Attleboro Dye Works site at 36 Maple Ave. The town has identified two acres for redevelopment with the remainder envisioned for open space and river access. MassDevelopment also provided an award from the Brownfields Redevelopment Fund in 2017 ($99,800) and 2020 ($250,000) to support redevelopment of the Attleboro Dye Works site.

City of Taunton – $15,000

The City of Taunton will use this award to perform an opportunities and constraints analysis to inform the transformation of a municipally owned vacant corner lot at 56 Taunton Green into a mixed-use building.