Mayor Fuller issued the following RFI today for a new site for a police complex. It includes the current HQ, garage and annex as locations to swap or sell.
From the mayor’s office:
“Mayor Ruthanne Fuller today issued a formal Request for Information (RFI) for a new site for a police complex. This sets in motion an innovative proposal that could result in the City building a new police complex with open space and potential recreation fields in exchange for the current police properties in West Newton Square.
The RFI specifically seeks locations for the City “to acquire a parcel of land, by purchase, swap or other means, with or without buildings thereon, within the City limits, for the purpose of building a new Police Station Complex.” It also calls for the possibility of additional open space or recreational space, especially in areas of Newton that are underserved.
The RFI includes the current Police Headquarters and garage at 1321 Washington Street, and the Police Annex at 25 Chestnut Street as locations to sell or swap.
Interested parties have until Wednesday, May 30, 2018 to submit a proposal.
“I’m looking forward to exploring the opportunities to move this important public safety project forward, while at the same time looking at proposals to strengthen the vibrancy of West Newton Square,” Mayor Fuller said.
Mayor Fuller began thinking about options for a new police complex after touring with Police Chief David MacDonald the current Newton police facilities as well as police headquarters in Watertown and Weston.
What she saw was Newton Police Department facilities that are too small; the layout functionally inadequate; limited parking; and a building that doesn’t meet current structural safety codes.
Addressing these issues on the current site in West Newton Square would require demolishing the historic building, something Mayor Fuller wants to preserve. In addition, starting from scratch on the current site would be difficult since it’s too small for the department’s space and parking needs. The financial reality of this endeavor and the large number of other priority building projects had pushed planning for such a police project far down the road.
Instead she came up with the possibility to leverage the value of the West Newton police properties to provide an opportunity to greatly accelerate construction of a new police headquarters and recreational facilities that would otherwise be financially unattainable for many years to come.
All the responses to the RFI will be available to the public and posted on the City’s website at newtonma.gov after the May 30 submission deadline.”