Vacant land full of promise for MBTA

June 11, 2012 by  

The commuter train station in Newburyport will soon have new neighbours.

The Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority, which owns several parcels of land next to the rail station, is looking to unload the lots for commercial development. In total, 11 acres are available for development and is zoned for mixed-use, which could include shops, services, office space, leisure and residential space.

As part of the new trend in municipal planning to create densification around transit hubs which in turn will increase ridership, the MBTA said it is encouraging potential buyers to come to then with creative plans for a diverse and lively mixed-use community. This type of planning is called TOD, or Transit Oriented Development. In addition to making transit easier to use because it’s virtually next door, TOD development promotes pedestrian traffic by having shops and services all within walking distance. Print companies looking to move or open extra locations should consider TOD locations as high traffic opportunities.

The Authority has set a reserve bid of $1.57 million for the four parcels of land. The sale is a prudent move in light of the $185 deficit the MBTA will incur in 2013. Despite raising fares by 23% just a few, short months ago, new sources of revenue must be found.

The lowest bid price is set at $1.57 million and it comes as the transport agency is facing a $185 million deficit in 2013. Bid registration is free and they must be submitted and be in the MBTA’s hands by July 11.The website is