Stadium Project Takes First Step in Long Journey with Project Manager

The City reported on Monday that six bidders have put in proposals to be the owner’s project manager (known in the construction world as an OPM) for the proposed new Stadium and playing field project at the old GE and Seven Acre Park site.

The new Stadium project includes relocating the old Veterans Memorial Stadium on the Parkway to the site of Seven Acre Park and the old GE site at Air Force Road – an area that Wynn Boston Harbor is currently also building out as a relocation for businesses and as a large waterfront park. Nearly 11 acres will be set aside from Seven Acre and the GE site for the Stadium project. It will not only include a new football Stadium, but also a regulation track and several other playing fields.

Supt. Fred Foresteire is in complete support of the project.

Mayor Carlo DeMaria said it is the first step in transforming the Malden River waterfront.

“By hiring an OPM is the first step in transforming the area along the Malden River into a recreational and environmental asset for the entire city,” he said. “The management team will look at the feasibility and design of not only building a stadium, but also a regulation high school track, a field house, and facility to highlight and commemorate the strong tradition of our champion athletes – and preserve the WWII honor wall from the old stadium. Our goal is to combine this facility with the new river walk, playground, and playing fields to draw residents throughout the city to our waterfront.”

Planner Tony Sousa reported that they had six firms submit proposals to the City by Monday, and his department was in the process of evaluating the proposals. He said they would look at the merits of the proposals first, and then analyze the fee structure later.

“Right now, we are looking at all of the proposals and analyzing them,” he said. “It’s a small step, but a very important step because the City has to have its OPM in place before it can do anything else.”

An OPM is a representative for the City that oversees a project from beginning to end. Many describe the OPM’s role as the City’s “set of eyes” on the project. They would look out for, and advocate for, the City’s best interests at all stages of the project.

“Through the entire project they’ll act as our eyes, even during construction too,” he said. “They are with us from concept to completion.”

Once chosen, the OPM will begin assembling a team, including architects and engineers. Once assembled, they will begin the discussions of budget and timeline.

That will begin the first action on the project,

Sousa said a timeline for the project right now is not possible, as there will be a lot of permitting to do – including a state MEPA environmental process. He said the OPM initial ramping up process should take about 14 months.

  • Other Parks news:

-The Walter Morris Playground bids are to come in this week as well, with the tot lot behind the Keverian School looking to be completely re-done at an estimated cost of $1 million.

The design is done, and bids now are to get a construction firm on board to build out the project. Work is expected to begin after school lets out for the term.

Money from the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and the Capital Improvement Program (CIP) has been used for the project.

-Sacramone Park fields will be ready for the opening day of Little League this year, despite some setbacks due to the late snow events this month. The playground is expected to be done in mid-April as the rubberized surface cannot be poured until the weather is warmer.

Also, the new concession stand/bathroom building will still be under construction on opening day. It is expected to be at 80 percent then and will be done in mid-May.

-Swan Street Park has an opening date of May 1, and City officials reported that this year’s Day in the Park program will take place at Swan on May 19.

-The Florence Street Park is nearing completion, with only the splash pad area left to be completed. It is expected to be done in the spring.

-Gramstorff Park reconstruction is running on time with no delays. It is expected to be fully completed by the end of school – in June or July.

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