Print Print
  • Acts
  • 1999
  • Chapter 36 AN ACT RELATIVE TO THE REDEVELOPMENT OF THE FORMER LAWRENCE MILLS PROPERTY IN THE CITY OF LOWELL.

Whereas , The deferred operation of this act would tend to defeat its purpose, which is to provide forthwith for the redevelopment of certain property in the city of Lowell, therefore it is hereby declared to be an emergency law, necessary for the immediate preservation of the public convenience.


Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:


SECTION 1. As used in this act, the following words shall, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise, have the following meanings:-

"Commissioner", the commissioner of the division of capital asset management and maintenance;

"Committee", the Lawrence Mills Reuse Committee, which shall include three representatives of the city of Lowell, three representatives of the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, one representative of the division of capital asset management and maintenance and the senators and representatives who represent the city as ex-officio members;

"Developer", a person, entity or governmental body that acquires an ownership or leasehold interest in the site, as hereinafter defined, or any portion thereof pursuant to this act;

"Division", the division of capital asset management and maintenance;

"Plan", a reuse plan which shall be prepared by the committee and which shall be approved by the commissioner and filed in accordance with section 2, which plan may be enhanced, refined or amended from time to time as provided in this act and which shall include uses by the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, uses that promote private economic development related to the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, private uses that benefit the city of Lowell and the University of Massachusetts at Lowell and public uses that will benefit the city of Lowell;

"Selection committee", the proposal selection committee established to review proposals and make recommendations to the commissioner, which shall include one representative of the city of Lowell, one representative of the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, one representative of the division of capital asset management and maintenance, and two representatives of the Lawrence Mills Reuse Committee;

"Site", the 13 acres, more or less, of state owned land located in the city of Lowell known as the former Lawrence Mills, together with the buildings and improvements thereon, and the rights, easements and other interests appurtenant thereto.

SECTION 2. The commissioner shall undertake planning, studies and preparation of plans and specifications necessary to carry out the provisions of this act consistent with the plan. The committee shall file the plan with the commissioner within 180 days after the effective date of this act. The commissioner shall consult with the committee on any amendment to the plan and shall develop, issue and advertise requests for proposals consistent with the plan within 90 days of receipt of said plan. Upon receipt of proposals the commissioner shall convene the selection committee for the purpose of reviewing and making recommendations regarding selection to said commissioner.

SECTION 3. The commissioner may, subject to the provisions of sections 40E to section 40J, inclusive, of chapter 7 of the General Laws, and in accordance with this act and the plan and subject to such terms and conditions as the commissioner may from time to time prescribe, solicit, evaluate and select development proposals, enter into land disposition agreements, sell, lease for a term or terms of up to 99 years including extensions or otherwise grant, convey or transfer to a developer, any interest in the site or portions thereof and any facilities, associated improvements or appurtenances thereon, on such terms and conditions as the commissioner deems appropriate. The amount of consideration for the sale, lease or other disposition of any interest in the site or portion thereof shall be full and fair market value of the property determined by independent appraisal. The inspector general shall review and comment on said appraisal and said review shall include an examination of the methodology used for said appraisal. The inspector general shall prepare a report of his review and file said report with the commissioner for submission to the house and senate committees on ways and means and the chairmen of the joint committee on state administration. The developer shall be responsible for any costs of appraisals, surveys and other expenses relating to the transfer of said parcel or for any costs, liabilities and expenses of any nature and kind for the development, maintenance or operation of said parcel. In the event said parcel of land ceases to be used at any time for the purposes contained herein, said parcel of land shall revert to the care and control of the division of capital asset management and maintenance and any further disposition of said parcel of land shall be subject to sections 40E to 40J, inclusive, of chapter 7 of the General Laws. The commissioner shall, 30 days before the execution of any agreement or amendment thereto authorized by this act, submit the agreement or amendment and a report thereon to the inspector general for review and comment. The inspector general shall issue his review and comment within 15 days after receipt of any agreement or amendment. The commissioner shall submit the agreement and any subsequent amendments thereof, the reports and the comments of the inspector general, if any, to the house and senate committees on ways and means and the chairmen of the joint committee on state administration at least 15 days before execution.

SECTION 4. The commissioner may, subject to appropriation, and subject to sections 40E to 40G, inclusive, and 40I and 40J, of chapter 7 of the General Laws or any other general or special law to the contrary, retain, accept or acquire by purchase, transfer, lease, eminent domain, pursuant to chapter 79 of the General Laws or otherwise, grant by deed, transfer, lease, eminent domain, pursuant to said chapter 79 or otherwise, or grant by deed, transfer, lease or otherwise, any rights-of-way or easements, in, over and beneath the site or portions thereof or other property in the commonwealth contiguous to the site for drainage, access, egress, utilities and other purposes, as the commissioner deems necessary and appropriate to carry out the purposes of this act.

SECTION 5. The University of Massachusetts, with the approval of the commissioner, may enter into contracts for the provision of building management services for buildings and facilities located on the site.

SECTION 6. Notwithstanding the provisions of any general or special law to the contrary, the commissioner may employ designers who prepare studies or programs or other design services for the construction, renovation, reconstruction, alteration, improvement, demolition, expansion or repair of buildings on the Lawrence Mills property to prepare plans and specifications and provide any other design services deemed necessary by the commissioner for such projects. The commissioner shall obtain an independent comprehensive value engineering review of the completed study and program to identify proposed functions of the facility, evaluate the construction cost estimates, calculate estimated life-cycle cost and develop recommended design changes that will produce a more cost-effective facility by modifying or eliminating features that add cost but do not add to the quality, useful life, utility or appearance of the facility. The commissioner shall obtain an independent comprehensive value engineering review of the completed schematic design documents to identify proposed functions of the facility, evaluate the construction cost estimates, calculate estimated life-cycle costs and develop recommended design changes that will produce a more cost-effective facility by modifying or eliminating features that add cost but do not add to the quality, useful life, utility or appearance of the facility before the acceptance by the commissioner. The commissioner shall document the reasons for accepting, modifying or rejecting all value engineering recommendations.

Approved July 9, 1999.