Marine industrial park would get less mariney under city plan

The BPDA is seeking state approval to allow more non-marine companies to move into the Raymond Flynn Marine Park, saying there's just not that much demand for decaying waterside facilities with no rail access, while there's tons of demand for space for R&D space and meat processing.

Rather than invest what it says would be millions of dollars to shore up the docks, bulkheads and jetties, or try to figure out what to do about the lack of rail service to the industrial park off Northern Avenue, the BPDA wants to open the park up even more to the sorts of R&D-focused companies that might otherwise be looking to new space in the Seaport, as well as meat processors looking to leave Widett Circle - in what could be up to 4.7 million square feet of new space.

Under a master plan approved by the state in 2000, at least 67% of the space in the 191-acre industrial park of Northern Avenue has to be set aside for marine-related concerns, such as fish processing and ship repair. In its The BPDA, which owns the 191-acre industrial park, did not specify a new percentage, but says it would only allow buildings that could be converted to marine use should demand ever pick up again - through buildings with first floors designed for industrial uses with large loading bays, with office, research or light-industrial use on upper floors.

Specific targets for the new buildings, which could rise as high as 200 feet, would be "biotech, life science lab space, e-commerce, as well as local food businesses and advanced manufacturing," the BPDA says.

The BPDA says rents from upper-floor tenants might even help pay for repairs to the aging marine facilities.

Notification of project change (1.3M PDF).

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Comments

R&D & meat

Maybe they could figure out how to grow giant vats of meat

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Must be nice ..

More privileges for the rich white people in the Seaport.

(Last time I'll make the same statement.)

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Well

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They are proposing replacing messy industrial and marine uses with clean R & D uses, so it does speak to the stereotype.

But of course this is up the other end of the Seaport area.

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Ray Flynn Marine Park

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I attended the dedication of this park. When I saw that it was being named a 'marine' park as opposed to a 'marine industrial' park, I knew this sort of thing was coming eventually.
I wonder how much effort the EDIC, BPDA or whatever alphabet soup outfit has put into trying to draw marine industrial businesses into the area?
I think down the road whatever marine/fisheries related businesses that remain (e.g., the dry dock) will be squeezed out by rising rents and a desire to attract a less aromatic and/or quieter tenant(s).
It's just a matter of time.

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...decaying waterside facilities with no rail access

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...decaying waterside facilities with no rail access

If only there was an existing rail road right of way with tracks (mostly) in place they could use to address this deficiency....

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It's a chicken-and-egg

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It's a chicken-and-egg problem.

Track 61 is on the state's radar. MassDOT is insistent on retaining it for future use, and occasionally talks about extending it via a bridge across Reserve Channel to the Conley Terminal. But they want hard evidence that it's actually needed and will be used before spending the money, and MassPort doesn't anticipate Conley needing rail access for a while yet.

Looking at the Marine Industrial Park, no one is willing to build a new spur unless there's a new tenant who needs rail access and is willing to pay for it, but anyone who would be interested wants a site that already has rail access. So no one is interested in the site because there's no rail access, and there isn't any rail access because no one is interested in the site.

The city is also notorious for not actually communicating with MassDOT. I wouldn't be surprised if they didn't even send so much as one email about Track 61 before declaring the site as having no rail access.

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You've got that backwards.

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You've got that backwards. There's no plans to build a spur across the Channel to Conley container terminal because demand isn't there and the markets for ship-to-truck at this particular port don't overlap much at all with the rail-to-truck traffic that goes to the big intermodal yards in Worcester and Ayer. Massport does, however, have well-articulated plans to build a spur track up Tide St. to Marine Terminal, primarily to cultivate cold storage warehousing rail business there. Not anytime soon because the dredging work for deepening the Harbor's shipping channels has only begun, but the Marine T. spur has been pegged high on the wishlist for years and Massport owns all of Track 61 east of the Pumphouse Rd. grade crossing where MassDOT ownership ends so they're masters of that domain. It's an early/mid-2020's priority for them.

The city's also in for a rude awakening when the feds get to comment on this proposal for non-marine facilities under a Designated Port Area covered by the Deepwater Port Act. Boston 2024 found out the hard way you can't just de-port a port that has federal preemption; the feds routinely bat away invasive non-marine land uses because the DPA treats those Designated Port Areas as a scarce natural resource. B24 didn't bother sending so much as an e-mail to Massport to get that legal question answered before daydreaming out loud about Olympic facilities at Marine T...only to find out, "Oops...illegal."

The BDPA doesn't appear to be any smarter, or any more capable of doing a simple-ass Google search about DPA preemption, before opening its big mouth. Not that this should surprise any regular observers of our city's lovely fiefdoms.

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DPA =/= Deepwater Port Act.

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DPA =/= Deepwater Port Act. It's a Designated Port Area, a state regulation, which allows for such uses under a master plan. But a simple Google search about both DPAs and the Deepwater Port Act would reveal that the latter is about gas and oil facilities beyond the territorial waters of the US.

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Just like the Edison plant

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In a few years there will be a whole mess of yuppies living there and blue collar jobs will be lost.

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I think that plant needed to close

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I wonder if anyone has correlated the cancer rate in southie to the plant’s operation. It burned coal for decades before converting to natural gas. The pollution can’t be inconsequential to the neighboring population.

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If living near such a

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If living near such a facility DID cause cancer, then we'd already know from the hundreds of similar locations all over the country - and the world. The testing has already been done. Sorry to spoil your fun.

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Um, Anon?

You might want to check out the history of fossil fuel power plants and their emissions and local health impacts. Such things are very well explored.

http://www.lung.org/assets/documents/healthy-air/toxic-air-report.pdf

Alternately, you might want to check out the amount of carcinogens emitted by these facilities (both with past and present fuel sources and technologies) before stating such things with such great certainty.

Sorry to ruin your fun ... although you gave this air pollution and public health scientist a good laugh.

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Lost?

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They are already gone or don't want to locate downtown.

How many blue collar jobs are you creating?

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You knew this was coming

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when they kicked out the dog sitting company Fenway Bark because of the incessant barking. The shipyard workers couldn't take the noise anymore. The same business a lot of nonresidents of Boston were pushing to locate in a Southie neighborhood.

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Paging Mr. Bezos...

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How's 4.5 million square feet of space to go along with a nice office tower at South Station, sound? Oh, and we'll build a gondola between the two. This is how Boston will get Amazon.

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I worked down there in the

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I worked down there in the early to late 90's. There was nothing there then. The one bus that was supposed to go through there either never showed up or wouldn't stop. It was easier to walk to South Station on some nights than wait for the ghost bus.

It's unfortunate that in 27 years the state couldn't have gotten better transportation options to that area. I do think the billion dollar bus goes there now but not 100% sure.

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