State Hospital Meeting Requested
Town officials have raised 'a number of concerns' with the state's proposal, Dykema says.
Westborough officials want to discuss the Westborough State Hospital property with state Division of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance officials, state Rep. Carolyn Dykema said Tuesday night.
Town officials requested the meeting in a letter “highlighting a number of concerns” with the agency’s proposal regarding the site, “including Allen Hall,” Dykema told selectmen.
Dykema said she has called the agency to note the letter, and discuss scheduling the meeting.
“Westborough is really on the front edge of this,” she said.
There “would be an agreement between the town and the state, with the town taking control of the property for a price. And then the town could choose which or how to develop the property. And then for the portions of the property that are actually developed, the state would take a percentage of that benefit,” Dykema said.
“It’s sort of a partnership model that I believe will be used with more state properties across the Commonwealth, and Westborough is the first to engage in this conversation,” she said.
The state hospital was among several issues that selectmen discussed with Westborough's legislators Tuesday night: Dykema (D-Holliston), state Rep. Danielle Gregoire (D-Marlborough), state Rep. Matthew Beaton (R-Shrewsbury) and state Sen. Jamie Eldridge (D-Acton).
“Obviously, that’s a big deal for us here in Westborough,” Selectman George Barrette said of the state hospital’s future.
Last month, DiasporaCapital CEO Anton Nel presented to the planning board his vision for the currently state-owned state hospital site.
Nel's concept, he noted, has a film industry component, including a soundstage, as well as “a boutique hotel”; retail; keeping the town’s playing fields there, and upgrading them with lighting and wheelchair access; adding an amphitheater for community use; saving every building, if possible; and preserving “the ambience that exists at the moment.”
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