For Immediate Release - December 22, 2011

Land Conveyance For Paul A Dever State School Campus Redevelopment

Invests in Economic Development Efforts in Gateway City

TAUNTON – Thursday, December 22, 2011 – Division of Capital Asset Management (DCAM) Commissioner Carole Cornelison joined state and local officials today in Taunton to announce the conveyance of land at the former Paul A Dever State School Campus to MassDevelopment and Taunton Development Corporation. This conveyance is important step in the redevelopment of the former Paul A Dever State School Campus and expansion of the Myles Standish Industrial Park (MSIP).

“As we invest in economic development opportunities in our Gateway Cities, including Taunton, we need to work in partnership across government agencies and with the private sector to leverage investment and job creation,” said Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray.  “With the execution of this agreement, our Administration looks forward to building upon our partnership with MassDevelopment and the Taunton Development Corporation to support business expansion plans for the Myles Standish Industrial Park.”

This land conveyance follows last week’s announcement of a $3.1 million MassWorks Infrastructure Program grant to support redevelopment efforts at the site. The conveyance paves the way for the 185-acre infrastructure redevelopment project of the former Dever School core campus, which will expand the MSIP and create a new Life Sciences Center.  An estimated $1.8 million in annual tax revenues and 2,400 jobs are expected to be generated from this development’s full build-out.

“The Paul A Dever State School Campus redevelopment project is an example of the Patrick-Murray Administration’s commitment to making critical infrastructure investment across the Commonwealth,” said Commissioner Cornelison. “The conveyance of land to MassDevelopment and the Taunton Development Corporation is a major step forward in supporting a project that will spur new economic growth in the region and create hundreds of new jobs.”

“The Patrick-Murray Administration has been committed to creating jobs and spurring economic development by creating development-ready sites in our local communities across the Commonwealth,” said Housing and Economic Development Secretary Greg Bialecki. “This project is consistent with that goal and is a priority for the region.”

MISP currently hosts 99 companies that employ 6,700 area residents. The Southeastern Regional Planning and Economic Development District (SRPEDD) identified the expansion potential of MSIP as critical to reach its Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) goal of promoting the expansion of quality industrial land in the region. The proposed redevelopment of Paul A. Dever State School site is an important job creation mechanism for a city that has suffered higher-than-average unemployment over the last three years.

"The Myles Standish Industrial Park already serves as a driver of regional economic growth. Today's announcement represents a major step in the partnership between MassDevelopment and the Taunton Development Corporation pertaining to the redevelopment of the Dever School," said MassDevelopment President and CEO Marty Jones.  "Following successes with South Coast Research and Technology Park in Fall River and 1550 Main Street in Springfield, we look forward to making Taunton the site of our next signature real-estate project.  We are encouraged by our conversations with several companies that have already expressed interest in expanding on this newly acquired land."

“The citizens of Taunton are extremely grateful for the coordinated and cooperative efforts demonstrated by all parties in finalizing the arrangements that will make the former Paul A. Dever State School site a center for economic opportunities for years to come,” said Mayor Charles Crowley.

“The Dever acquisition has been a long time in the making.  It is through the efforts of the Patrick-Murray Administration, Mayor Charles Crowley, Senator Marc Pacheco and The Taunton Development Corporation that has made this project a reality,” said Mayor-elect Thomas Hoye. “Our city needs to control our own destiny and this signing is the first step of this process.”

“The legislation surplusing the land the Commonwealth is transferring today passed in 2002 and 2008. Since then we’ve been searching for a partner in the executive branch who was committed to investing in Southeastern Massachusetts,” said Senator Marc Pacheco (D-Taunton).  “As indicated to the TDC, the Mayor and City Council, I was convinced that this Administration was committed to investing in Southeastern Massachusetts and becoming partners in this project.  It’s understandable that some were hesitant in moving forward until they saw the tangible financial commitment, and I’m pleased to say, as anticipated, the Patrick-Murray Administration has provided that financial commitment.”   

"With today's announcement comes many new opportunities for regional economic growth", said State Representative Patricia A. Haddad, Speaker Pro Tempore (D-Somerset), "Thanks to the collaborative efforts of both the Commonwealth and the city, everyone will benefit. This is truly a 'win-win' endeavor."

"I am very pleased that we have finalized the Dever development deal.  This is a major step forward in allowing for the expansion of the Myles Standish Industrial Park,” said Representative Shaunna O’Connell (R-Taunton). “Private sector job growth and getting people back to work continue to be a top priority for me."

“The Taunton Development Corporation wishes to thank MassDevelopment in particular, Senator Pacheco and Mayor Crowley for their efforts in finally working out an agreement that leads to today’s exciting closing and transfer of the land,” said President of the Board of the Taunton Development Corporation Lou Ricciardi. “We believe this has the potential to be the most exciting phase of Myles Standish Industrial Park redevelopment.”

A second land conveyance was executed today between DCAM, the Taunton Housing Authority and the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) to allow DCAM to transfer 9.5 acres of the former Paul A Dever State School Campus to the Taunton Housing Authority to construct two new homes for clients of DDS. The construction of the new homes not only relocates these clients, freeing up prime development location, it also provides clients with a new modern residential home.

The Paul A Dever State School Campus site is state surplus property. Legislation has authorized the DCAM to sell the land to the TDC as described within Chapter 395 of the Acts 2002 and Chapter 419 of the Acts of 2008.