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  • Acts
  • 2011
  • Chapter 185 AN ACT RELATIVE TO THE LAND ACQUISITION FOR HAMILTON CROSSING.

Whereas, The deferred operation of this act would tend to defeat its purpose, which is to grant or release forthwith real property interests in Lowell Heritage state park for the renovation of bridges, 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. Notwithstanding sections 40E to 40H, inclusive, of chapter 7 of the General Laws or any other general or special law to the contrary, the commissioner of capital asset management and maintenance, in consultation with the commissioner of conservation and recreation, may grant to HCL Acquisition LLC or release such real property interests owned by the commonwealth as may be necessary to permit the grantee to acquire fee interests, easements or other rights, for the purpose of constructing, renovating and maintaining pedestrian access bridges, overhead bridges, and utility services in, over and to certain parcels of land within the Lowell Heritage state park, subject to sections 3 and 4 and to such reasonable additional terms and conditions consistent with this act as the commissioner of capital asset management and maintenance, in consultation with the commissioner of conservation and recreation, may prescribe. Such real property interests are currently under the care and control of the department of conservation and recreation and are held for recreation and conservation purposes. Fee interests and easements granted to the grantee and releases of real property interests may be located within such volumetric areas in the air rights above and the subsurface areas below, such parcels of land as are necessary for such purposes. The fee interests and easements may also include the right to displace the water in the canals within such parcels to install bridge supports and access for the maintenance, repair and replacement of the bridges and utility services. The areas and volumes of such fee interests, easements or releases shall be substantially as shown on a plan entitled “Hamilton Crossing Bridges, Lowell, MA” dated June 18, 2009, prepared by Durkee, Brown, Viveiros & Werenfels Architects. The plan is filed with the department of conservation and recreation. Modifications to the description set forth in the plan described above may be made in order to conform with a final land survey, as accepted by the division and the department, before any conveyance to carry out this act.

SECTION 2. There shall be an independent appraisal of any fee interests, easements or releases described in section 1 to be conveyed as authorized by this act to determine the full and fair market value, or the value in use as proposed, based upon such independent professional appraisals as commissioned by the commissioner of capital asset management and maintenance. The grantee shall compensate the commonwealth in an amount greater than or equal to the full and fair market value, or the value in use of these fee interests, easements or releases as proposed, whichever is greater, as determined by these independent professional appraisals. For the purposes of any such appraisal, the full and fair market value of the area to be conveyed shall be calculated with regard to its full development potential as assembled with other abutting lands owned or otherwise controlled by the grantee, if any. The commissioner of capital asset management and maintenance shall submit any such appraisals and a report thereon to the inspector general for review and comment. Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary, the inspector general shall review and approve any such appraisal and the review shall include an examination of the methodology used for that appraisal. The inspector general shall prepare a report of his review and file the report with the commissioner of capital asset management and maintenance, the house and senate committees on ways and means and the joint committee on bonding, capital expenditures and state assets. The commissioner of capital asset management and maintenance shall, 30 days before the execution of a conveyance authorized by this act, or a subsequent amendment thereto, submit the proposed conveyance or amendment and a report thereon to the inspector general for review and comment. The inspector general shall issue review and comment within 15 days after receipt of the proposed conveyance or amendment. The commissioner shall submit the proposed conveyance or amendment, and the reports and comments of the inspector general, if any, to the house and senate committees on ways and means and the joint committee on bonding, capital expenditures and state assets at least 15 days before the execution of the conveyance or amendment.

SECTION 3. The grantee shall bear the cost of any surveys and other expenses deemed necessary by the commissioner of capital asset management and maintenance for the granting of fee interests, easements or releases pursuant to this act.

SECTION 4. To ensure a no-net-loss of lands protected for conservation and recreation purposes on account of the conveyances and releases authorized in this act, the grantee shall ensure that lands of equal or greater acreage and value, acceptable to the department of conservation and recreation, are permanently protected for such purposes under the ownership of the commonwealth or its designee, following substantial completion of the project to which the conveyances or releases pertain.

Approved, November 21, 2011.