MASSPORT's legal counsel met last week with a group of attorneys to present the Authority's legal position in Seaport District development issues.
The following notes on the meeting were provided by an attendee, but have not been confirmed by SAND or MASSPORT:
- MASSPORT is negotiating a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the City of Boston to delineate guidelines which MASSPORT will follow with respect the City's plans for the Seaport District.
- MASSPORT stated its position that its enabling charter permits development of commercial projects outside those of port/maritime use (hotel, office, etc.) as a method of funding port related activity. MASSPORT has, in the past, indicated that its port related activities are not profitable (losing up to $6M per year) and that alternative revenue sources were absolutely required.
- MASSPORT stated its position relative to City and State ordinances:
- MASSPORT indicated that its commercial development projects including those outside maritime/port use (hotel, office, etc.) -- unlike other Seaport District developers, are NOT subject to City zoning regulation or development ordinances including those which would set FAR (floor area ratio), public realm, setbacks, etc. MASSPORT will negotiate development terms relative to the BRA Seaport District Master plan (in process) as part of the MOU.
- MASSPORT indicated that its commercial projects are subject to state regulations including Chapter 91 environmental review.
- MASSPORT indicated that it is interested in establishing an open public process for development of its parcels, but that it is NOT legally obligated to do so.
- MASSPORT indicated that it is the owner of Seaport District roadways including D Street north of Summer Street.
(for more MASSPORT info click here)