Jul 28, 2014
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Mixed Use of Commercial, Residential Space Recommended for Reuse of Town Hall, Police Station

Dedham's current town hall and police station would be razed and new buildings would be made for commercial and residential space.

Mixed Use of Commercial, Residential Space Recommended for Reuse of Town Hall, Police Station Mixed Use of Commercial, Residential Space Recommended for Reuse of Town Hall, Police Station

Two Dedham Board of Selectmen cheerfully spoke about the possibilities of reusing the current town hall and police station, if the Rustcraft Road proposal goes as planned to site a new facility for those town departments.

"If special town meeting approves the Rustcraft proposal then the police station and town hall would move, so the two buildings for reuse would be the police station in Dedham Square and town hall on Bryant Street," said Mike Butler to Patch, chairman for the Dedham Board of Selectmen.

Butler said the Board of Selectmen had HR&A Advisors analyze the options for the two buildings and came up with a recommendation of mixed use. Mixed use combines residential, commercial and office space.

Carmen E Dello Iacono Jr, Board of Selectmen

"At the town hall site (HR&A) is recommending a three-story building - the ground level would be available for restaurant, retail space, and the top two floors would be residential," said Butler.

Both Butler, and Selectman Carmen E Dello Iacono Jr, said they'd like to see the Norfolk District Attorney's office move in to a new building at the site in 2017-2018. A three-story building was recommended for the police station, with the top two floors hopefully occupied by the district attorney and staff. The first floor would be a combination of commercial or retail space.

Iacono remarked that moving the Norfolk DA's office back to Dedham (it is now in Canton), would create "adrenaline" back in that area of town.

Butler also said that the proposal reusing ideas would not cost Dedham taxpayers more money.

"It would not (cost taxpayers money). One of the reasons the Selectmen engaged the services of the (analyst) firm... We want to understand the options we have for selling the land and the existing buildings, or leasing the properties. We havne’t made that decision yet," said Butler. "Through the years there’s been debate about whether town property should be sold. That discussion will take place after special town meeting. We haven’t made any deiciosns yet, and we’re going to share it with residents and town meeting reps and take input from them."

  • A public informational meeting is scheduled for Thurs., Oct 3, at 7 p.m. at the Dedham Middle School. 
  • Fin Com Warrant Hearings are scheduled for October 1, 8, 15, and 16. 
Click here for the next steps in the process, including tour of the Rustcraft site.

Both Iacono and Butler eagerly supported the proposal of the Rustcraft site.

"We have a chance, and the board itself has a way to change the way Dedham runs. We’re steering Dedham for the long term future with the Rustcraft proposal," said Iacono. "Honestly, after setting it up other municipalities will say 'Wow, that’ s a great idea - how do we do that to streamline (government and put departments under one roof). I love the concept of a municipal campus."

Butler said that putting a town hall, police station and senior center, as well as other town departments under one roof would significantly be a less expensive and quicker process than individual buildings.

Butler said that individual buildings would cost in the vicinity of $37 million for the project and take from seven to 12 years to build. Alternatively, building one building would cost about $28 million and be ready in about two years.

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