Lot 1 bill moves to governor's desk
By Richard Conn/Daily News staff
Daily News Tribune
Posted Jul 20, 2008 @ 11:33 PM
A bill that would keep some 47 acres in Lexington off Trapelo Road out of the reach of developers passed through by the House and Senate last week.
The land is part of parcel known as Lot 1 - an undeveloped 54-acre portion of the former Middlesex County Hospital campus, of which 47.5 acres lies in Lexington, while another 6.5 acres sits in Waltham.
The bill would transfer the land located in Lexington from the Division of Capital Asset Management to the Department of Conservation and Recreation, which would protect the land from development. State Rep. Thomas Stanley, D-Waltham, one of the co-sponsors of the bill, said after working on the legislation for years, its passage is long overdue.
"It felt like pushing a huge weight of a ball up a hill only to have it roll down over and over again," Stanley said. "I feel that we're on the crest and ready to push it over."
The bill now just needs the signature of Gov. Deval Patrick to take effect. Earlier this year, the governor signed a bill to transfer the 6.5 acres in Waltham from the state to the city at fair market value
The bill to transfer the Lexington portion of the land was sponsored by state Rep. Jay Kaufman, D-Lexington, and state Sen. Susan Fargo, D-Lincoln.
"Passing this bill means that generations to come can enjoy this land," said Fargo in a press release. ''I am so thankful for the many private citizens and local officials that kept working with us as the bill moved through the House and Senate."
Those who have advocated for the protection of Lot 1 cite it's conservation value including many high-quality woodlands, wetlands, meadows and vernal pools.
The land is also an important link in the Western Greenway, which includes about 1,000 acres of undeveloped land that runs through Waltham, Belmont and Lexington.
Richard Conn can be contacted at 781-398-9004 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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