Why is the Bayside site being developed?
In 2017, UMass President Marty Meehan asked the UMass Building Authority to begin a process that would result in the development and monetization of the Bayside Property due to indications that the nexus of the value of developable property in Boston and the ability for developers to finance large-scale development in the city was peaking.
How will developing the Bayside benefit UMass Boston?
- Potential new revenue of approximately $200 million to UMass Boston to address support infrastructure needs, debt or new construction
- Attracting innovation economy companies to locate at the site, enabling opportunities for linked research, student internships and co-ops
- Construction of a vibrant waterfront neighborhood that could provide new housing, dining, retail, cultural and outdoor amenities proximate to the campus
- The potential for large-scale private development to unlock both public and private infrastructure improvements proximate to the campus
What is the mechanism for developing the property?
UMass and UMBA embarked on an 18-month process to determine the most efficacious way to develop the property, determining that the highest and best use and greatest return for the university would be a long-term ground lease with a developer that would return revenue to the campus, while providing an option for campus development at the site.
Who will develop the property?
On February 14, 2019, the university announced that it would enter into a long-term ground lease with Accordia Partners, LLC/Ares Management, LLC (Accordia Partners) granting it rights to develop the property.
How was the developer selected?
What was the criteria for the selection?
The advisory group overseeing the developer selection process, which included real estate experts and was supported by a real estate advisory consultant, determined that several interested developers had the experience and capability to deliver a project of this size and complexity and were committed to a robust community and stakeholder input process and inclusive hiring, supplier and vendor practices. Among those, the university selected the developer that committed to the largest financial return to the campus, fulfilling its fiduciary responsibility to students and other stakeholders. For specific criteria, seeUMass Bayside Site Developer Selection Process
How much revenue will the development generate for UMass Boston?
Under the terms of an agreement in principle with UMBA, Accordia Partners will enter into a 99-year ground lease for up to $235 million, with a minimum lease price of $192 million contingent on receipt of necessary approvals. The lease price represents a more than 10-fold return on the university’s 2018 purchase price of $18.7 million. In addition, Accordia Partners has committed to a $25 million investment in related infrastructure improvements.
Was Accordia Partners the highest bidder?
Yes. It is the fiduciary responsibility of the university to maximize the financial return to the university and exercise appropriate stewardship over assets.
Who determines how the revenue will be used?
Since the original acquisition utilized tax-exempt bonds, the profits from the transaction can only be used for qualified capital projects approved by the Board of Trustees through its established capital planning process.
How else will the campus and community give input on the development?
The milestone reached in February 2019 was the selection of a developer. In accepting the project and the guiding principles of UMass Boston’s Bayside Charretting Process, Accordia Partners has committed to a robust stakeholder and community input process to refine a vision for the site moving forward.
What will be built on the property?
The university envisions a mixed-use project that could include office, lab, housing, dining, retail and outdoor amenities, but the developer, with input from the campus and the community, will ultimately determine the mix of uses and the tenants.
Can the campus build on the property?
The lease will include an option for the university to claim space on the site, depending on how other uses align with the campus’ goals and academic programming.
Will the campus be involved in determining which companies locate at the site?
The developer leasing the property will ultimately determine its tenants based on interest from the market, but the university will work with the developer to recruit companies that could provide experiential learning opportunities for students, collaborate on research partnerships, and participate in other partnerships with the university.
Where can I get more information?
While the developer establishes its process to communicate with the campus and the community, UMass Boston has established this website to provide updates and share feedback.