Preferred developer selected for Groton Heights School

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Groton — In a collaboration between town and city, officials this week announced local tech startup ThayerMahan as the preferred developer for the former Groton Heights School property.

The school, which closed in 2007, is located in the City of Groton at 244 Monument St. The town received a $150,000 grant in December from the state Department of Economic and Community Development for remediation work on the building, including lead and asbestos removal.

According to a news release from the town, ThayerMahan will adapt the existing 27,185 square feet into office and floor space for corporate offices, engineering and assembly, and research and development. The company, currently based on Leonard Drive, develops and deploys undersea surveillance technology to support security, infrastructure and environmental projects.

Chief Operating Officer Richard Hine said Friday the company is "thrilled" to be selected. He said the company had started in a small office near the Mystic train station before moving to the airport business park, and the Groton Heights School property is the next step in its growth in the region.

He said ThayerMahan is working closely with the town, city and especially the Bill Memorial Library, its immediate neighbor at 240 Monument St., to develop good community relationships.

"I think they are a wonderful selection," City Mayor Keith Hedrick said. He commended the company's high-tech work and also its planned reuse of a historic property, highlighting the collaborative effort between the city and the town to redevelop its old school buildings.

Economic and community development manager Paige Bronk said the town received several proposals for the property but ThayerMahan's was very strong, and the fact that it's already a thriving Groton business gave a lot of confidence to the town. He said there are still parts that need to be ironed out, but he expects it to go to the council for its "blessing" in April.

He noted that the Groton Heights property is just the first of several in Groton slated for new development, and this project is an example of how the town can support others going forward.

a.hutchinson@theday.com

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