Are you kidding me? They want to turn the main fire house into a police station? Are they on crack?
A police station needs to be designed and built to be a police station. They could completely gut that fire building and still fail to make it a fully functional police station. If they said they were going to demolish it and build a brand new building, that would be different. But no - let's build a brand new fire station on Tremont Street, renovate the library, and stick the police into a totally inadaquate building. That is one of the most egregiously stupid ideas I've ever heard. I knew you hated the police, Mr. Mayor, but this cockamamie idea is beyond the pale. What are they going to use the hose tower for, rocket launchers?
Dolan's boondoggle includes:
"Dolan is putting forth funding order this month for Melrose High, which would include funding for improvements to replace the roof, upgrade the elevators, and upgrade the Melrose Center for the Performing Arts in the middle school"
It's only a very few years ago that MHS had most of its roof replaced. Of course the geniuses that ordered up that boondoggle (incl Gaffey & Grover) insisted that this was all being done in the most energy and monetarily efficient way, even when others questioned the matter and asked why the entire roof wasn't being done. Now it turns out that it has to be re-done, like so many other things, including the "performing arts center" which is a mess missing major components from the very beginning (and costing the city dearly in lack of rentals to arts organizations for the last decade as a result). Mem Hall was also renovated not so long ago. But Dolan wanted to be sure he hit all the main feel-good targets and left his constituents continuing to believe his fake news BS.
Renovating that fire station into a police station is just BS, too, and he no doubt even knew that before his speech. His cynicism is getting to be quite epic.
I confess when I first began to read the original post, I didn't believe it. I couldn't quite believe Dolan would actually be so stupid as to suggest that a brand new, state of the art police building, so desperately needed, was not the plan. So I found the State of The City Address, and lo and behold, there it is in black and white.
A new main fire station on Tremont Street? I sure am glad I don't live on the Malden side, because doing that is going to increase response time to that side of town by three to five minutes, an eternity in a fire scenario or medical emergency. Does this fool really expect that dinky little station on Foster Street can cover that? Pure, abject stupidity. The main fire station needs to stay right where it is. If you want to build a new fire station, build it right there. While not optimal, a new police station could be an outlier. It's not nearly so critical that it should be right in the center of town. There was an opportunity to acquire the Corey Street property and put it there, but that got away, as did several other workable possibilities.
Then I read further, and discovered our "state of the art" high school needs another new roof - the third since it was built, and more millions of dollars in "upgrades". Three roofs in 15 years? What's wrong with that picture?
And reading further, I see that the library renovations are still on the table. Ah, yes - that's more important than having modern police and fire departments.
All I see now is another example of Melrose being totally unable to prioritize, doing things half-a$$ed, and then wondering a few years later why it has to be done all over again. Most of this was avoidable, if the Mayor hadn't spent fifteen years and untold millions of dollars pandering to the schools, which have consistently gone downhill since he took over.
So head off to Lynnfield Mr. Dolan, secure in the knowledge that you have left Melrose in a position where taxpayers are once again going to be required to pony up to fix all the damage you've done. Good luck to Lynnfield. The only question there is how long it's going to take before they discover what a complete and total fraud you are. You really should consider a career change. McDonald's is hiring. That's about the limit of your skill set, unless you count bull$hitting the public as a marketable skill.
"There was an opportunity to acquire the Corey Street property and put it there, but that got away, as did several other workable possibilities."
Correction - the Willow Street property.
Mr. Dolan has much more to be ashamed of than proud of. Unfortunately, shame requires a modicum of decency, of which he is completely bereft.
But are any of you really surprised? This is Melrose, they've always wiggled there way out of doing the right thing unless its in reference to the schools or parks. I have to admit, I chuckled when I saw they wanted to turn the fire headquarters into the Police Station. This city has always lagged behind others in common sense and logic. But lets be real, once Rob leaves this whole thing will die and our Fire Fighters and Officers will be stuck in those horrendous buildings for another 100 years. As a city we should be ashamed of our public safety buildings. unacceptable to have those men working in those conditions.
Didn't Dolan put together a "task force" of experts to find a suitable location for a new building? They must have spent a lot of time doing their research to come up with this idea of making the fire station into a police station. It makes no sense at all. there is nothing in that building other than the phone lines and computer lines that police and fire have in common. Wouldn't it make sense that if they want to revamp the fire headquarters that they do it for the fire dept., who have been there forever. The building is a "historic building" and if I remember correctly, the fire dept has had to jump through hoops to make changes to the building in the past. Why not build the police station behind the fire station, and make a parking lot where the current police station stands. Or tear down the current police station, buy the surrounding property, and build a new station perhaps building it a floor higher than the current one.
Dolan has promised the police a new station for fifteen years, but as he has dragged his feet, possible sites have vanished, As "Dumbfounded" stated above Willow St. and Corey St. were two sites that had been talked about along with the Armory, which is too far from the center of the city, and would be impossible for the elderly to walk to, as many of them do now. It's not Dolan's problem anymore. Hopefully Lynnfield has a decent public safety building.
The worst part of the plan is to demolish the old police station for..... a parking lot! I know everyone complains about parking downtown, but destroying downtown isn't how you address that. There were parking studies showing that there is ample parking if you are willing to walk a block. These studies also helped identify the building on Myrtle St that was purchased and torn down for parking. The parking studies should be redone to reflect that change. I don't know what world people are living in to believe that adding more parking means that there will be a parking spot right in front of whatever store they are going to. Removing yet another commercial building from West Foster (we already lost the 2-storefront Free Press building to a drive up bank teller) will just reduce the size of downtown, not improve it.
I have never thought about not going downtown because of parking, the main reason why I don't go every day is a lack of variety of stores and restaurants. So let's remove some more storefronts. That will fix it...
If there is any hope for our downtown, it may be that a new administration will have a better grasp of current development trends and practices. No one is tearing down buildings anymore for parking, they are removing parking as a consideration and encouraging people to walk, take the bus, etc. Maybe a new administration would also relax the alcohol restrictions and get a few more restaurants to open up!
Well known that Gail and her girlfriends love to invibe their wine. The Police and Fire Departments are not GI supporters.