Manchester seeks development proposals for Broad Street | Manchester
MANCHESTER — The city issued a request for proposals for the former Broad Street Parkade site on Friday, saying it was seeking “high quality development on the site as soon as possible”.
“The city’s priority at this time is feasible, shovel-ready development that generates economic activity, property tax revenue and amenities for the immediate community and region,” the proposal states.
After agreeing to sever ties with former developer Manchester Parkade I LLC in late January, the redevelopment agency expressed a desire to move quickly to find a new developer for the site. RDA President Aaron Wlochowski said the agency was looking to release a less targeted proposal to encourage more submissions from developers.
“The first time we had a very specific plan and we got limited answers,” Wlochowski said. “We wanted to keep (the RFP) as open as possible so that any bids we received were as broad as possible. This allows the market to speak.
The potential uses of the site specified in the proposal include residential, retail, institutional and entertainment. By expanding the proposal, the city may also consider other uses for the site that it had not previously considered, city officials said.
The development of the Parkade site would be the latest in a series of Broad Street redevelopment projects undertaken by the city. The Broad Street redevelopment plan was drawn up in 2008, and since then the city has sought to achieve a mixed-use development to transform the area “from an exclusively commercial district to an environment where people work, socialize and live,” the proposal reads.
Manchester purchased the Broad Street Parkade property in 2011. It later also acquired part of Green Manor Boulevard and 296 Broad St., expanding the Parkade site to approximately 23 acres. As part of the sale, the city agreed that it would not include a 30,000+ square foot supermarket and 100,000+ square foot big box retail store in the future development.
“That’s not what we saw on the property anyway, so we accepted that,” said Gary Anderson, director of planning and economic development.
Broad Street’s redevelopment plan calls for the construction of a greenway park along Bigelow Creek on the southern portion of the Parkade property, the proposal says, and the city ‘strongly prefers’ that greenway construction be included in any development proposal.
The deadline for proponents to submit an electronic copy of a proposal is May 5. The city will begin conducting interviews in early to mid-June.
The document says proposals will be assessed on the basis of criteria including “ability to undertake and complete the project as soon as possible and feasible”.
Proposals will also be assessed on the proponents’ “demonstrated ability and experience” to secure funding and successfully complete the project, as well as experience from similar completed projects.
Other criteria include the design of the project, its economic impact and the use of sustainable buildings or site features.
Austin Mirmina covers Manchester and Bolton.