A hearing on Nov. 29 at the City Council regarding the sale of two large City-owned properties on Frontage Road has many whispers going around the neighborhood about the prospects of a soccer stadium locating next to the South End.
The Council will have a hearing on Nov. 29 to declare 200 and 400 Frontage Road as surplus properties – an 18-acre swath across the Expressway from New York Streets that now houses the City’s Tow Lot and other municipal services. It also sets next to a larger tract of land owned by the New Boston Food Market at Widett Circle that is on the market and, according to sources, close to a sale.
The two properties combined together would equal out to a gigantic swath of land right next to downtown and the South Station transportation hub, and many in the neighborhood said they have heard renewed talk of a potential New England Revolution soccer stadium build by the Kraft family – owners of the New England Patriots and the Revolution.
It’s a plan that has surfaced previously among the rumor mill, and this time around could not be confirmed.
However, what can be confirmed is that the Frontage Road properties and the Widett Circle properties are likely going to be transformed soon.
The Boston Planning and Development Agency (BPDA) would be the beneficiary of the property transfer to be considered on Nov. 29. Already, the Council held a hearing on the transfer in late August, and BPDA officials this week said they believe the time is right to develop the land and create a better place for municipal services.
“Imagine Boston 2030 identified Frontage Road as a place for growth due to its proximity to transit and downtown, and its potential to create a connection between neighboring communities while preparing the area for the impacts of climate change,” read the BPDA statement. “The BPDA and City are interested in exploring redevelopment opportunities for the Frontage Road Campus that would enhance the surrounding neighborhoods and maximize public benefits. The redevelopment of the site creates the potential to use proceeds to support and strengthen the delivery of basic city services.”
Meanwhile, Sue Sullivan, president of the Newmarket Business Association, said she has heard about conversations regarding Widett Circle, and she said she also hopes that the City will include Newmarket in its discussions on Frontage Road.
“I am sure that the BPDA and the Mayor’s Office are considering a number of possibilities for the future of the Frontage Road parcels as well as the wider spectrum of property in that area,” Sullivan said. “I certainly hope and anticipate that the City intends to include all of the stakeholders, including specifically the Newmarket Business Association and the surrounding businesses and neighborhoods, in any early discussions about potential uses.”
The hearing on the Frontage Road parcels will take place on Nov. 29 at 4 p.m. in City Hall.