Stadium May Come to City

State Report Says East Cambridge Site Is a Possibility

Instead of trekking to Foxboro to catch an afternoon Patriots' game, Cantabrigians may find the team moving to their backyard, if an East Cambridge site is chosen for a multi-million-dollar stadium.

Northpoint, a 46-acre plot between the McGrath Highway and the Central Artery, is one of the seven possibilities for the location of the new complex.

The state has not decided on a final location, but officials say that the spot would have to accommodate both the stadium and a convention center.

While the Cambridge site is feasible, state officials said they are looking more closely at a Mattapan state hospital site and a location between South Station and Broadway in Boston.

Still, the East Cambridge site was one of several which met the state's criteria, including the absence of wetlands, no hazardous waste and "compatibility with surrounding developments," according to the consulting firm on the project, Coopers and Lybrand of Boston.


This is not the first time Northpoint has been considered as a location for a stadium. Back in 1936, Northpoint was chosen to be the home of New England's first sports stadium of its kind, according to Alfred E. Vellucci, a former city councillor.

"The whole city was opposed to it then, and the same thing will probably happen now," he said.

Other city officials also doubt whether Cambridge will end up with the complex.

"Access to Northpoint is limited," said Councillor Alice K. Wolf. "It does not seem very likely," Another factor Cooper and Lybrand considered important was access.

Vellucci agreed, saying the added traffic the stadium would bring to the already congested area could also prevent approval.

"It'll generate thousands of automobiles," hesaid.

Others doubt the viability of the megaplexbeing built anywhere. "That kind of complex isreally a difficult thing to achieve," saidattorney Sam Desimone, a supporter of building thestadium on an 86-acre Worcester site.

The construction of the domed stadium alonewill cost an estimated $150 million to $170million, depending on whether it is equipped witha retractable roof, according to developers.

According to media reports, Secretary forEconomic Affairs Stephen Tocco is expected to putout a report containing deeper analysis as well asa recommendation for a final site.

Of particular concern is how "a facility likethis gets built and paid for," Gov. William F.Weld '66 told The Associated Press.

Tocco, however, is anxious to see the complexbuilt anywhere, and soon. "I don't have anyfavorites," Tocco told The Associated Press. "Ijust want the damn thing so bad."

This story was written with wiredispatches.