Find out more about the I-Cubed program that the Town of Watertown, Athenahealth and the Department of Conservation and Recreation are exploring, and would result in improvements to the public roads and infrastructure near the Athena headquarters.
The state would contribute $25 million to improve infrastructure around the Arsenal on the Charles, which is home to Athenahealth and other businesses, as well as the Mosesian Center for the Arts. The money comes from tax revenue created by new jobs added by Athenahealth.
The proposed work would improve the roadway, intersections, streetscapes, and increase connectivity of public transportation, pedestrian paths and bicycle routes. In February 2016, Athena said the following improvements would be included in the I-Cubed projects:
- Arsenal Street – streetscape improvements, bus stop and shelters and improved crosswalks
- North Beacon Street – improvements at the intersections at Greenough Boulevard and Charles River Road (including a traffic signal at Greenough), cycle tracks, streetscape and stormwater improvements
- Squibnocket Park – parking, pedestrian access including paths and boardwalks along the river, river overlooks, canoe and kayak launch and storage house
- Arsenal Park and Commander’s Mansion – improvements to Talcott Avenue, a path through Arsenal Park and the Commander’s Mansion
According to the state’s website, I-Cubed projects must include an economic development project approved by the municipality. Bonds for the public infrastructure project will be issued by MassDevelopment.
The state will pay the debt service on the bonds though Commonwealth contract assistance payments. The city or town will then levy assessments on the developer’s property in the economic development area to reimburse the state for the debt service costs.
When the commercial component of the economic development project is occupied and generating new state taxes, the state will use the new taxes to cover the debt service on the bonds. If the new tax revenues do not cover the debt services, the municipality must reimburse the state for the shortfall. The developer, however, may agree to allow the municipality to assess the property to reimburse the city or town for the shortfall on the debt service.
According to the document submitted to Town officials from Athenahealth in February 2016, the company will allow the Town to levy a special tax assessment if there is a shortfall in tax revenue. Also, Athena has pledged to create a $3.3 million Liquidity Reserve to cover the time between the start of a shortfall and the time when the town’s special assessment starts being collected.
The following announcement was sent out about the meeting:
Infrastructure Investment Incentive Program (I-Cubed) Informational Meeting Residents of Watertown are invited to attend an informational meeting about I-Cubed regarding the details of a public infrastructure partnership between Watertown, the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR), and athenahealth.
Representatives from the Town of Watertown, DCR, and athenahealth will discuss the partnership, along with the process and benefits to Watertown, DCR, and athenahealth.
WHEN: Thursday, May 11, 2017 at 6:30 p.m.
WHERE: athenahealth Building 311 311 Arsenal Street, Watertown, MA
For more information and to see the presentation from Athena about the proposed improvements, please visit: http://www.watertown-ma.gov/documentcenter/view/18611