Weymouth: Town committed to reaching solutions with Starwood

Weymouth continues to work with Starwood, the developer of Southfield, to solve remaining issues with their proposed legislation.

Some problem areas include: recreation, the “re-use plan,” and water and wastewater plans.

Matthew Barry, Starwood Vice President, said their preference of three water solution options is to do “whatever benefits Weymouth.”

“It is too soon to confirm all the details of any one option until we are the proponent,” Barry said, “If Weymouth determines that a Weymouth solution is to their benefit, than that is what we’ll pursue.”

The three potential water solution options all involve reaching out to the Massachusetts Water Resource Authority (MWRA), according to Barry.

The first solution: connecting to Braintree and sending water to Southfield through an 8-mile long pipe, the second: Braintree connecting to the MWRA, which would supply both Braintree and Southfield, and the third: connecting at the Fore River Bridge, and the MWRA supplying water to North Weymouth and Southfield.

The existing “re-use” plan for the project is another area of concern for Weymouth. Many of the councilors have expressed their concern with the language, specifically on recreation in the legislation.

“I think this is a circumstance where both of our goals our aligned,” Barry said, “We should be able to find a way to reassure the Council that our commitment to recreation in the way that it is stated in the re-use plan, is as firm as we can make it.”

Councilor Thomas Lacey suggested Starwood keep the current re-use plan and just focus on the legislation, to avoid complication. “This is the same dance, just with a different partner,” he said.

Barry responded that they felt it would be clearer to take specific items from the existing re-use plan and move those forward. “I believe we’re being clear,” he said.

Barry added that he would be happy to remedy the situation however Weymouth see fit. “Words shouldn’t get between us,” he said.

The councilors are not the only ones participating in the ongoing Starwood discussion.

Weymouth Mayor Susan Kay is in the process of holding meetings with department heads to gain feedback on potential internal impacts of Starwood’s proposed legislation.

Mayor Kay has met with the Police, Fire, and DPW departments so far. She will meet with the Water and Sewer, Planning, and School departments within the next week.

Barry is looking forward to hearing from all of the departments.

“There’s a lot of time and effort and dedicated people,” Barry said, “And we look forward to continuing the conversation with the Mayor, the departments in Weymouth, the Town Council, Rockland, and Abington.”

Barry is pleased overall with the way discussions have been going with Weymouth.

“The detail and comprehensive and very transparent nature of our discussions is all we could ask for,” he said.

The Council is holding a special meeting next Monday night dedicated solely to discussions on Starwood’s proposed legislation. Council President Patrick O’Connor said  representatives from both Starwood and the Tri-Town Board of Director’s will be present at that meeting. The town’s Chief Executive Officer will also be presenting.

About Samantha Tracey

Samantha Tracey graduated from Salem State University in 2013 with a degree in Journalism. She has been reporting on local issues in a variety of towns: Bridgewater, Abington, Carver, Weymouth, East Bridgewater, Hanson, Halifax, etc. She says growing up on the South Shore has made it interesting now to be covering news in such familiar places.