October 15, 2014/Press Releases

Massachusetts Democratic Party Again Thanks Republican Charlie Baker For Highlighting Investments in Lowell

For Immediate Release
October 15, 2014

Contact: Pat Beaudry
Phone: 617.939.0800

Republican Baker Gets Firsthand Look at How Investments in Gateway Cities Spur Economic Development

Boston— As Republican Charlie Baker visits Lowell today, it comes on the heels of Governor Deval Patrick’s announcement yesterday of $15 million for the Lord Overpass. Republican Baker will be joined by City Councilor Corey Belanger, who was forced to apologize this month for an “ill-timed, misinformed broadside,” according to news reports.

The Massachusetts Democratic Party thanks Republican Baker for highlighting how investments made over the past eight years are spurring economic development.

“If Republican Charlie Baker wants to learn about local economic development across the Commonwealth, he should visit other areas of the state – in fact, every area of the state – which has benefitted from current investments,” said Coordinated Campaign Chair Ben Downing.

Below is a list of some investments made by Patrick administration and the Democratic legislature to spur economic development in Lowell:

1.     $40 million invested in the UMass Lowell South Campus Health and Social Sciences Building, the first new ground-up academic building at that campus in over 30 years.
2.     $500,000 invested for 110 Canal Street Capital Investments Project

3.     $1.5 million invested for Rivers Edge Development Project, which is expected to create minimum of 28 units of mixed-income housing

4.     $1 million invested for Jackson Sq. Improvement Project, which facilitated the opening of a 155,000 sq. foot Lowes

5.     $16.7 million invested for Hamilton Canal Infrastructure Project

6.     Over $10 million of MLSC Capital Program investments to UMASS Lowell and Middlesex Community College, on top of $95,617 to Middlesex Community College for equipment and supplies to train students in life sciences technology, and $99,303 to 7 different Lowell companies for the MLSC Intern Challenge Program.

7.     $900,000 from DHCD in capital bond program funding to the Paige One project, involving the acquisition and rehab of 10 units of housing for the Youth Aging Out of the Foster Care program to assist in the successful transition to independent living.

8.     In January 2008, Governor Patrick filed a five year capital spending plan that requested $2.5 billion in borrowing for public safety, state buildings and information technology to round out his five-year capital plan. The proposal included $500 million in funding for the renovation and construction of court facilities throughout the state, including $125 million for a new judicial center in Lowell’s Hamilton Canal District. From 2008-2012 DCAM completed the study, site acquisition and preparation. (Capital Bond $781K)$1.2 million was awarded in October 2012 as part of the 2013 capital spending plan for the design. Cost estimate is currently $165M and the245,000-square-foot facility will house five court departments, including superior, district, housing, juvenile, and probate and family courts. These departments currently operate in inadequate facilities that are characterized by poor condition, overcrowding, lack of security, and inefficiency. Five court departments will be consolidated into a single, efficient comprehensive justice facility, replacing two state-owned buildings and one private lease. There will be sixteen courtrooms with state-of-the-art security and technology features.

9.     In December of 2013, the Governor included $1.2 million in the FY14 capital spending plan for continued design work. The funds will be used to hire an architect, project manager and keep the project funded through the summer of 2014.The project is expected to break ground in the spring of 2015 and be completed in 2017.

10.  In January of 2014, the Governor announced $15 million in state funding to re-design the Lord Overpass, one of the city’s busiest and most traffic clogged interchanges. The re-design will help better link the downtown, Gallagher Terminal and the proposed Judicial Center within the Hamilton Canal District. As of January, 2014, design is 1/3 completed and constructing is expected to begin as early as the summer of 2014.

11.  In July 2015, Governor Patrick included in the FY 2015 Capital Investment Plan $5.5 Million for the continued design of the new Lowell Trial Court.