Ron Newman (ron_newman) wrote in davis_square,

City of Somerville is trying to sell Day-Herbert parking lot to a hotel developer

The City of Somerville is taking bids from hotel developers to buy the public metered parking lot at Day and Herbert Streets, where a weekly farmers' market now operates every Wednesday from mid-May through late November.

As far as I can tell, the city has established no public process whatsoever to involve the neighborhood. They are holding a "pre-bidder's conference" on Tuesday, January 15 at 11 am at the northeast corner of the parking lot. They have not advertised the meeting at all to local residents, but it's open to the public. I urge any interested neighbors to show up and make clear that the city needs to include us in the land disposition process.

I found these two documents on the city web site:
Request for Proposals RFP #13-53: Davis Square Hotel Project
Legal Notice: RFP #13-53 = Davis Square Hotel Project

Also, here's an earlier City of Somerville page about a Davis Square Hotel, from when the city last tried to interest hotel developers in 2009. This page includes a Hotel Demand Study written in 2007.

[My own personal position: this could be good for Davis Square, but it needs to be designed sensitively, not tower over the rest of the neighborhood, and not present a blank wall to either Day or Herbert street. It's also essential to find a new nearby location for the farmers' market.]

ETA: An earlier discussion of this topic from February 2007.
Tags: development, local government, lodging, parking
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