After years of discussion, the Navy Yard Power Plant (Building 108) will soon be demolished – albeit very carefully – said Devin Quirk of the Boston Planning and Development Agency (BPDA).
The BPDA sought a contract with Weston and Sampson for the demolition from its Board two weeks ago, and received that approval. Now, the process is being announced, and to great excitement for residents.
Already, at the Winter Warmup for the Friends of the Charlestown Navy Yard, the news of the demo was greeted with a round of hearty applause. That’s because many residents have waited for years for the vacant, highly contaminated building to come down and be developed into something useful.
“We are demolishing the building,” Quirk told the Patriot-Bridge. “We’re doing a lot of due diligence with the EPA and the DEP so it happens appropriately and safely. But people could expect this demolition to happen this year…It wasn’t feasible to redevelop the building. The historical planning for the Navy Yard called for the development of that. We made the decision to go ahead…and get that building down and plan for what will go in its place.”
The process to take down the building will be a slow one as the old Power Plant has some very hazardous materials within it. Those will need to be remediated and there will need to be precautions taken to ensure the safety of the public as it comes down.
Quirk said they would be having public meetings in the near future about the building, and those meetings would include addressing safety concerns during the demolition.
The other part of the equation is what to do next with the site once it is cleaned up and cleared. Already, Quirk said they have been talking with the National Park Service about Building 107 that lies next door to the Power Plant. The hope is there might be a way to combine the two parcels.
“We are talking with National Parks, who owns Building 107 next door and what those two sites might look like together,” he said. “We’re having beginning conversations now, but we’ll be having community visioning sessions and lots of discussion very soon, which is exciting.”
He said it is far too early to talk about uses, but they would be looking to the public for suggestions in the coming months.
“We know this has been a blight to the neighborhood a long time and we’re excited to move forward and re-develop the site,” he said.