TOWN OF MEDFIELD
Office of the
BOARD OF SELECTMEN
TOWN HOUSE, 459 MAIN STREET
MEDFIELD, MASSACHUSETTS 02052-0315
(508) 906-3011 (phone)
(508) 359-6182 (fax)
MEDIA RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE USE
Thursday, January 6, 2022
PROPOSED MEDFIELD STATE HOSPITAL REDEVELOPMENT ADVANCES
Trinity Financial Proposal Designated as Most Advantageous
MEDFIELD, MA –The proposed redevelopment of the Medfield State Hospital has achieved a critical milestone, with the Board of Selectmen voting unanimously to designate the proposal submitted by Trinity Financial of Boston, MA as the most advantageous received in response to its Request for Proposals issued on April 5, 2021. The Board of Selectmen further authorized the Medfield State Hospital Development Committee to negotiate a provisional development agreement with Trinity Financial for its review.
The agreement, expected to be executed by the Board of Selectmen later this month, would grant Trinity Financial an exclusive period to conduct additional due diligence activities on the site, further advance its financing assumptions, and more fully engage with Town officials to address remaining questions or potential concerns regarding the proposal.
Town Administrator Kristine Trierweiler said, “We look forward to working with Trinity, the Development Committee, and other relevant Town boards and committees to drill down further on Trinity’s proposal, continue to evaluate impacts to the Town, conduct additional technical reviews, and seek adjustments to the proposed redevelopment, if necessary.”
Although the Trinity designation is an important step, there are still several more steps in the process.
“After the due diligence process is complete and the Town has drafted a Land Disposition Agreement with Trinity that incorporates any negotiated changes to their proposal, the proposed sale of the property will need to go before Town Meeting for approval,” said Trierweiler.
Throughout this process, the Town has sought public input and looks forward to continuing to engage with residents about this potential redevelopment. If approved by the voters at Town Meeting, Trinity still must complete required design and permitting reviews for the site, with construction activity likely beginning no sooner than 2023.
Trinity Financial’s proposal calls for the development of up to 334 apartments on the site through the renovation of existing buildings using federal and state historic tax credits. The proposal would maintain the campus’ extensive open space areas and provide for continued public access to the property, while also complementing the Cultural Arts Center proposed by the Cultural Alliance of Medfield. The planned development will incorporate sustainability measures to reduce environmental impact subject to historical rehabilitation standards. In accordance with Town Zoning bylaws, 25% of the apartments would be designated as affordable housing, with a potential partial set-aside for artist housing, and the remaining 75% of the project will be market-rate. The proposal as submitted is generally consistent with major elements of the Town’s Strategic Reuse Master Plan for the Medfield State Hospital campus that was developed with extensive community input between 2014-2018.
In addition to the Trinity proposal, the Town received a proposal with three different development scenarios from Pulte Homes of New England. All three Pulte Homes scenarios included demolition of existing buildings, with the two variations applicable to the historic “core campus” calling for between approximately 600-700 newly constructed for-sale or rental housing units. In exchange for denser development, Pulte Homes proposed a higher purchase price to the Town. Proceeds from the sale of the property are required to be split with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in accordance with the Land Disposition Agreement between the Town and Commonwealth.
“The Trinity Financial proposal received higher ratings from Development Committee members across all evaluation categories identified in the Request for Proposals and comments from all stakeholder groups and the general public were significantly more favorable,” said Todd Trehubenko, Chair of the Development Committee.
The Development Committee, which unanimously recommended that the Board of Selectmen designate Trinity, noted that the proposal is intended to fund all of the project’s infrastructure costs as part of the construction and according to Trinity’s projections will generate over $700,000 per year in net tax revenues to the Town.
“Trinity’s proposal represents a less intensive use of the site than competing proposals, and at the same time was the only proposal received that would put Medfield well-above its town-wide 10% affordable housing goal for the foreseeable future,” said Trehubenko.
The Town’s Request for Proposals was issued in April 2021 after several rounds of public comment. Responses were due by August 2, 2021 and were posted to the Town’s website. Proposals were then reviewed over the next 90 days through a process led by the Development Committee.
This process included an evaluation against criteria published in the Request for Proposals, several rounds of developer Q&A, developer interviews (available on YouTube), input from the general public, and advisory reviews from stakeholder organizations including the Medfield Historic District Commission, the Medfield Historical Commission, the Medfield Energy Committee, the Cultural Alliance of Medfield, and the Massachusetts Historical Commission.
The potential sale of the Medfield State Hospital is subject to state laws governing the disposition of public property, M.G.L. c. 30B §16. Technical assistance was provided to the Development Committee by Peregrine Group (Rumford, RI) through funds made available by MassDevelopment, the Commonwealth’s development finance agency.
ABOUT MEDFIELD STATE HOSPITAL
The Medfield State Hospital is a historic former psychiatric hospital campus in Medfield, MA, established in 1892 as the state’s first facility built specifically for chronically ill mental patients. The campus was designed by William Pitt Wentworth and developed between 1896 and 1914. At its peak the complex included 58 buildings and had a capacity of 2,200 patients. The property and buildings were closed in April 2003, after decades of declining population. The grounds have since been reopened to the public for passive recreation from dawn to dusk, while the buildings remain closed. Some of the buildings have been demolished. For more information, please go to http://www.town.medfield.net/556/Medfield-State-Hospital-information .
MassDevelopment, the state’s finance and development agency, works with businesses, nonprofits, banks, and communities to stimulate economic growth. Through these collaborations MassDevelopment helps create jobs, increase the number of housing units, revitalize urban environments, and address factors limiting economic growth including transportation, energy, and infrastructure deficiencies. Under its Real Estate Technical Assistance program, MassDevelopment works with municipal officials, planners, local stakeholders, and others to address site-specific and districtwide economic development challenges. For more information, please go to www.massdevelopment.com .
FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT:
Nicholas Milano, Assistant Town Administrator