The Wellesley Sportsplex slated to be built at 900 Worcester St. as soon as winter of 2018-2019, has been weaving its way through the town regulations process, and on Tuesday will be the subject of a big Zoning Board of Appeals meeting at Town Hall at 7:30pm. Parking, sewage and other issues still need to be addressed as the project moves along.
Developer Wellesley Sports Center has already received approval for a permit as a project of significant impact by the town’s Planning Board, and is also working its way through the Design Review Board regarding signage, etc. The outfit hopes to start construction by October and maybe have the facility open in time for Wellesley High School’s 2018-2019 hockey season.
The nearly 102,000 sq. ft. facility would include 2 National Hockey League-sized ice rinks, competition and training swimming pools, a field house, and a parking lot designed to accommodate more than 350 vehicles.
The town earlier this year approved a lease of the property to Wellesley Sports Center.
900 Worcester St. is the former site of St. James the Great Catholic Church, which was officially shuttered by the Archdiocese of Boston in 2004. The Town of Wellesley paid $3.8M for the 7.85 acre property in 2012 with the idea of using it for recreational purposes.
1) Lyn Evans in Wellesley closed up shop
It was with surprise and dismay that we said goodbye to Lyn Evans, that Wellesley landmark that kept fashion-forward women clad in contemporary clothing and accessories for the past 30 years at its 8 Church St. location. Business owner Stan Shotkus cited in a letter the challenges of carrying on the family-owned business after the sudden death last year of his wife Linda, and thanked the community for its decades-long support. All six Lyn Evans locations, all in New England, will be sorely missed on the retail landscape as well as on the charitable cause circuit, especially by the Wellesley Service League at its annual May fashion show…MORE
2) Wellesley neighbors were given a heads up about a proposed 95-unit housing complex
The Board of Selectmen grabbed residents’ attention with a letter informing them about a June 26 meeting at which it and the Planning Board were to discuss a proposed 6-story (including underground garage), 95-unit housing complex on a small road off of Linden Street. Neighbors reached out to us to air their concerns about what such a development could mean to an already congested and sometimes dangerous traffic area…MORE
3) The Fund for Wellesley dispersed over $30k to local non-profits
The Fund for Wellesley, an endowed fund of the Foundation for MetroWest that’s been around since 2008, says it has distributed over $30,000 to seven local nonprofit organizations in the areas of community building and civic engagement, and youth development and opportunity.
4) Wellesley first-grade teacher was honored at Red Sox game
5) A sculpture exhibit popped up at Elm Bank gardens
The Gardens at Elm Bank Reservation at the intersection of Dover/Natick/Wellesley are providing the backdrop for a new exhibit from New England Sculptors Association artists featuring more than 3 dozen works…MORE
6) The Town of Wellesley ramped up a new website
While you were lying around on the beach, the Town of Wellesley, never idle, debuted a new Town website (www.wellesleyma.gov). Yes, you’ll need to update your bookmarks and get familiar with the new format. HERE ARE ALL THE DETAILS.
7) Wellesley residents were tapped for leadership roles in Gov. Charlie Baker’s administration
Wellesley’s Michael Heffernan and Chris Harding have been assigned new and greater responsibilities within Gov. Charlie Baker’s administration…MORE
8) Historic Stuart Swan building in Wellesley Square was acquired
The historic Hathaway House building at 103 Central St., in Wellesley Square that houses Stuart Swan Furniture and a handful of business/professional offices has been acquired by Harbinger Development, known in part for numerous hotel projects in Boston…MORE
9) The Centennial Reservation parking lot got a face-lift
Work being done on that sometimes treacherous Centennial Reservation Parking lot…MORE
10) A mystery flower-box waterer was on the loose
Members of the Wellesley Gardeners’ Guild had been showing up to do their gardening duties, only to find the boxes already sodden and plants dying. After a flurry of communication among members, we realized that we had a Mystery Waterer on our hands. Or maybe even two. FIND OUT HOW WE COPED.
11) Woodlawn Cemetery is plotting to welcome additional “residents”
Driving on Brook Street, I was surprised to see a major project taking place at the 47-acre, Woodlawn Cemetery, privately owned by the Woodland Cemetery Board of Trustees. The usual cemetery stillness was being shattered by earth-moving equipment, and a once-thick buffer zone of trees and vegetation between the grounds and Brook Street was looking mighty thin, indeed. I stopped by and found out that the reason for these major topographical changes is simple: the cemetery is running out of space to lay people to rest and is therefore adding approximately 2,500 new grave sites…MORE
Three articles were affected:
This Article was adopted by the Town to assure the preservation and enhancement of the Town of Wellesley’s historical and cultural heritage by preserving, rehabilitating or restoring whenever possible, buildings that have distinctive architectural features or historical associations that contribute to the historic fabric of the Town.
This means that any home that was built in whole or in part on or before December 31, 1949 requires a Demolition Permit in order to be demolished. Buildings owned by the Town of Wellesley and dormitories and residence halls owned by educational institutions used to house students or staff are not considered Eligible Buildings for purposes of this Article.
15 individual Revolving Funds were authorized including:
Council on Aging Social and Cultural Programs Fund: $100,000.00
Funds programs for senior citizens, under the direction of the Council on Aging.
Recreation Summertime Revenues Fund: $30,000.00
Expenditures for summertime and special event programs and activities, under the direction of the Recreation Department.
Street Opening Maintenance Fund: $225,000.00
Expenditures under the direction of the Department of Public Works for administrative services related to issuing permits for work conducted in the public way and for inspection of that work to ensure compliance with town standards.
Babson College has shared a few more details about the major recreation and athletics facility project that we wrote about last month, including that there will be a groundbreaking on Sept. 16 to coincide with the school’s homecoming weekend. Construction is slated for completion for the start of the fall 2019 semester.
Gilbane Building Company is providing pre-construction planning and construction management services for the project, while the architect for the project is Cambridge Seven Associates.
Babson isn’t saying how much the project is going to cost.
The 75,000 sq. ft. addition will nearly double the size of Babson’s athletics and recreation facilities, boosting the quality and quantity of gear and space available for varsity sports, recreational endeavors and other activities, from orientations to job fairs. To pave way for the expanded facility, the existing tennis courts are being relocated to a space behind the ice skating rink, and construction has already begun on that. The new courts will have bleacher seating and lights.
The Webster Center athletics and recreation facility will remain open, except next summer, when most of it will be closed for renovations.