Recovery Act Impact: Wonderland T Station
"An essential precondition to the start of development on the beach was the garage," said Ambrosino.
But Ambrosino said bridging the funding gap to get the garage built, a $59 million project, was proving to be impossible.
And then along came the stimulus program.
"This parking garage was the critical piece that we could never finance," said Ambrosino. "The stimulus program made it possible for us to develop this project."
A $22.7 million stimulus award through the MBTA revived the parking garage
"Both in terms of boosting the aesthetics on the beach and generating jobs and taxes, the benefits [of the garage and the development] are huge," said Ambrosino,
Revere state Representative Kathy Ann Reinstein agrees. "This development is incredible," she said. "It will change the face of this area. We are also putting people to work which is paramount."
The garage will create 1489 parking spots, which Ambosino said he has no doubt will get filled. MBTA General Manager and MassDOT Rail and Transit Administrator Richard Davey noted that the parking garage will encourage more ridership on the Blue Line which runs to Wonderland. "There is a fair amount of capacity in the Blue Line now," he said.
In addition, a $20 million stimulus funded TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery)grant through the MBTA is enabling the development of a transit plaza at Wonderland Station over the train tracks linking the east and west sides of the station, creating a connection between the garage, busway and the development in the Revere Beach area. This project also includes a pedestrian bridge that will provide access across Ocean Avenue to Revere Beach.
"This will help people get here and see how great this area is," said Reinstein.