Public Hearing Information
COMMUNITY PRESERVATION COMMITTEE
TOWN OF NEEDHAM, MASSACHUSETTS
PROPOSALS UNDER REVIEW FOR SPECIAL TOWN MEETING
The Community Preservation Committee (CPC) invites all interested parties to a public hearing on the following projects that have been included in the May 2021 Special Town Meeting Warrant. The public hearing will be held on Wednesday, March 17, 2021 at 7:00 PM Via Zoom – Webinar ID: 810 5897 6931. The CPC welcomes the input to assist in their deliberations. A decision on whether the CPC will recommend each of the projects will be made prior to them being presented to Town Meeting. To view the applications, please go to www.needhamma.gov/CPC Please send questions in advance to CPC Staff Liaison at email@example.com.
NEEDHAM PUBLIC SCHOOLS – EMERY GROVER RENOVATION/ADDITION PROJECT – OPTION #3 (ROTATED)
The Needham Public Schools are requesting $1,475,130 for design funding to renovate and preservation of the historic Emery Grover School Administration Building. This design would be in line with option #3 that was presented by BH+A during the feasibility study completed in June of 2020. This project includes the historic renovation of the building exterior, renovation and modernization of the interior, and construction of a 50 foot by 100-foot, three store 18,415 GSF addition to the rear of the building. This project includes the temporary use of the Hillside Elementary School as swing space for school administration personnel during construction. This project supports the CPA plan’s historic preservation goal and meets all of the historic consideration factors: historic preservation, public benefit, restoration of functional use.
NEEDHAM TOWN CLERK – PRESRVATION OF TOWN OF NEEDHAM MARRIAGE RECORDS
The Needham Town Clerk’s Office is requesting $25,000 for the historic preservation of the Town of Needham’s historic marriage records. The Town Clerk’s Office has insured that all marriage certificates are preserved and bound since 1919 and has preserved the documents from 1711 to 1919 through a previous Community Preservation appropriation. This request is to scan and index the documents from the 1700’s to 1970 (or later depending on the recommendation of the Historical Commission) and upload them onto a content management system. Companies under the state contract will be solicited to contract for this work, and an estimate has been received to support the requested amount. The Town Clerk has sought a recommendation from Needham Historic Commission Chair to review the historic significance of these documents. This project, if funded, would enable immediate access to the records which would help ensure a higher level of access for those who need these documents.
NEEDHAM TOWN MANAGER AND DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS – TOWN COMMON HISTORIC REDESIGN AND BEUTIFICATION
The Office of the Town Manager and Department of Public Works is requesting $1,364,000 for the construction of the Town Common Redesign and Beautification project. The Town Common has long been used for a gathering spot for the community. This reconstruction will focus on making this space beautiful as well as functional. The area in this project includes the green space between the southern curb line of Garrity Way to the curb line of Great Plain Avenue to the south and from the curb lines of Chapel Street and Highland Avenue. Garrity Way and the parking area are not included in this project. The Town completed an internal design process for the Town Common and drafted a scope of services which includes improved hardscape, landscaping, amenities, tree plantings, and utility upgrades that are consistent with the historic nature of the Common and the new Downtown Streetscape Improvement Project. This project will install new sod, trees, plantings, low maintenance hardscape materials, and increase handicap accessibility. The pathways and landscaping will be adjusted to become more aesthetically pleasing and functionally enhanced. There will be increased electrical and sound capacity to accommodate Town-wide events.
NEEDHAM TOWN MANAGER AND BAY COLONY RAIL TRAIL ASSOCIATION (BCRTA) – FISHER STREET TRAILHEAD, NEEDHAM RAIL TRAIL
The Office of the Town Manager and Bay Colony Rail Trail Association are requesting $15,000 to construct the Fischer St Trailhead at the Needham corridor of the Bay Colony Rail Trail. This trailhead was designed by the Needham Engineering Department and consists of a stone driveway and parking area, a guardrail, and landscaping. The proposed trailhead at Fisher Street will not only improve the accessibility of the Rail Trail, its proximity to Red Wing Bay and the Charles River Peninsula will make the area more of a destination for passive recreation.
NEEDHAM DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS AND PARK AND RECREATION - RESURFACE SYNTHETIC TRACK AT DEFAZIO FIELD
The Public Works and Park and Recreation Departments are requesting $166,000 to resurface the track at the DeFazio Field. Parks and Forestry Superintendent and a consultant evaluated the synthetic track at DeFazio and determined there was delamination. If funded, this proactive capital improvement, along with basic maintenance, could extend this life of this track by approximately 10 additional years, thereby delaying a full replacement. Providing this proactive repair will reduce the need for total replacement soon.
NEEDHAM DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS AND PARK AND RECREATION – MCLEOD FIELD RENOVATION
The Public Works and Park and Recreation Departments are requesting $45,000 in design funding to investigate the appropriate method to address the issue that continuously create sinkholes in the outfield. The outfield of McLeod field, within the DeFazio complex, has been plagued with sinkholes due to the 4’ drainpipe that runs through the field. Following heavy rains, large holes appear throughout the outfield that require emergency repairs to allow the field to be used by permitted user groups and the greater public. This has caused the field to fail prematurely, and a full renovation of the subsurface, surface, and improved amenities will be the focus of this design. This project will address the impact of this failing drainage system and create a new subsurface and improved playing surface as well as upgraded amenities in at this playing field.
NEEDHAM CONSERVATION DEPARTMENT – TRAIL IDENTIFICATION
The Needham Conservation Department is requesting $6,000 in design funding to address a long-standing goal of the Conservation Commission and is identified as a priority in the Town of Needham – Trails Master Plan. This project is for the design of a system of identification signage for the trailheads, information kiosks, and directional signage, including trail markers, for the various trail systems throughout the Town. Having cohesive, easy to follow, signage and markers, as well as, additional kiosks will encourage the public and visitors to enjoy our trails and all the trail properties have to offer.
NEEDHAM DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS, PARK AND RECREATION, AND THE WALKER POND WATERSHED ASSOCIATION – WALKER POND IMPROVEMENTS
The Public Works and Park and Recreation Departments in conjunction with the Walker Pond Watershed Association is requesting $125,000 to address the water quality of Walker Pond. This project includes the installation of three (3) 6-foot diameter drainage manholes, the installation of wildflowers, tall grass, and tree mixtures, the installation of a tree infiltration system designed by the Conservation Commission, and educational information, including pamphlets and signage. This work aims to improve the health of the pond, removing excessive aquatic vegetation. Without remediation, the pond will not offer this resource to the community.
NEEDHAM DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS – TOWN RESERVOIR SEDIMENT REMOVAL
The Department Public Works is requesting $262,000 in design funding to determine the best way to address the impairments affecting the Town Reservoir. The Town Reservoir is used for many recreational purposes such as model boating, fishing, and ice skating. Identifying and creating a design to remedy the impairments will improve both the Town Reservoir and Alder Brook that the Reservoir discharges its water to. Alder Brook is designated as a category 5 impaired water body, under National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES).
COMMUNITY PRESERVATION COMMITTEE – INCREASING THE CONTRIBUTION TO THE COMMUNITY HOUSING BUCKET
The Community Preservation Committee is investigating the benefit of increasing the current contribution of annual appropriations from 11% to 22% to the identified Community Housing funding bucket. After a review of the projects that have been funded by the Community Preservation Committee since it was established in 2006, Community Housing, one of the pillars of the Community Preservation Act, has only expended 4% of the approve funding projects. It is the hope of the Community Preservation Committee that by increasing the contribution that they could support the larger community housing projects and support improvements to the community housing communities throughout Needham. The Needham Housing Authority, the main proponent for Community Housing projects, operates outside of the Town’s oversight and therefore cannot bond large projects in the same manner that the Town does.