Officials Exploring Option to Buy Scottish Rite Property
An appraisal and study OK'd after Scottish Rite of Freemasonry offers the town first dibs on land, buildings and parking spaces it's looking to sell behind the National Heritage Museum on Marrett Road.
The Scottish Rite of Freemasonry is looking to sell a swath of its land and some of its buildings along Lexington’s Marrett Road and the town has first dibs.
That was the word from Town Manager Carl Valente on Monday, July 30, and the Board of Selectmen has moved to explore the potential opportunity.
According to Valente’s presentation, the property for sale would include 10.3 acres of land at 33 Marrett Road, the council’s 18,000 square-foot “main building,” an approximately 5,200 square foot carriage house, a 3,5000 sf residence along Marrett Road and about 60 parking spaces.
The council would move its headquarters to the National Heritage Museum, which will continue to operate as a museum, according to Valente.
The selectmen said they were interested in exploring the opportunity, but would have to do their homework.
“I would hate to see us just say, ‘Oh no, we’re not interested,’” said Selectman Norm Cohen, adding that there are many developers who would be happy to put “16 houses there in no time.”
The selectmen decided to have an appraisal done and to take a look to see if this property would address town facilities needs.
Valente said the town would be working on the Scottish Rite’s timeframe, which includes beginning to vacate the buildings at the end of this year and moving into the museum in 2013. Valente said his office, along with facilities, is likely to run point as the town explores this option.
Patch reached out to the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry’s Supreme Council here in Lexington, but the council did not return our request for comment at the time of this report. We’ll be sure to post an update as that response comes in.