Gear plant 'ready to be sold'


January31, 2014
By Thor Jourgensen/The Daily Item

 A 60-acre Lynnway site slated to be dangled in front of developers as early as next month is “probably the most valuable” land in Lynn, the city’s top development official says.

A General Electric gear plant once stood on the lot located near the General Edwards Bridge and the commuter rail tracks. The plant is gone, but Economic Development and Industrial Corporation Director James Cowdell said the site is a potential location for a 20-story development with a Boston skyline view.

“There will be a lot of interest in this land. It’s ready to be sold,” Cowdell said Thursday.

Cowdell said General Electric could advertise requests for proposals in February aimed at attracting developer interest in the gear plant land. River Works spokesman Richard Gorham on Thursday said GE is moving to advertise the land and work with the city to develop it.

In an electronic mail, Gorham said GE is not only going to seek development interest in the gear plant land through the request for proposal process.

“We expect to actively market the site,” he wrote, adding, “The Mayor (Judith Flanagan Kennedy) has expressed an interest in the site’s redevelopment and in touring the parcel, which we’ll schedule in the near future.”

Because it borders the commuter rail tracks, the gear plant site is located next to a train stop. Its location near the General Edwards Bridge — the major entrance to Lynn for drivers leaving Boston — any development on the land will help redefine what Cowdell called the city’s main gateway.

“You could build a high-rise there, and someone living in it could be in work in 20 minutes,” he said.

The plant was built in 1941 and, by 1971, had more than 800 workers employed in a 500,000-square-foot facility. The plant manufactured its last gears in December 2010, and GE executives briefly considered a plan in 2011 to manufacture locomotives at the gear plant before tearing it down.

Cowdell said initial environmental reports from the plant site are positive. Gorham said General Electric needs to “finalize some internal matters and ensure we have completed all agency/regulatory requirements” before marketing the site.


Back to News