Boston – The Boston Planning & Development Agency (BPDA) board of directors approved seven new development projects representing 1.3 million sq. ft. The new projects will create 123 residential units, 51 of which will be designated income-restricted, and will support approximately 1,182 construction jobs and 2,673 permanent jobs.
Two individual parcels in the Raymond L. Flynn Marine Park (RLFMP), 20 and 22 Drydock Avenue, will be combined into one parcel with a new 7-story research laboratory and office building. The ground floor will include a laboratory and classroom space for the Gloucester Marine Genomics Institute. The space will serve as a satellite location for marine research, facilitate teaching opportunities, and provide access to local students and community groups. The development includes 35,000sf of public open space.
The project at 155 N. Beacon Street in Allston/Brighton will build three new life science buildings. Building one will be six stories consisting of life science and retail space. Building two will be a 6-story building containing office and lab space. The third building will contain office, life science, and retail space. In addition, there will be more than 30,000sf of public open space on campus. The project will retain artist rehearsal space, and all buildings will be LEED Gold certified.
Phase 4 of the Garrison Trotter Development in Roxbury will build 23 new homes, the majority of which will be made affordable homeownership units. These will be a mix of single-family, stacked two-family, and semi-detached two-family unit types. As part of this project, Harold Street will reopen to further connect the new development to the existing neighborhood. This development is on BPDA-owned land, which was tentatively designated to Windale Developers, Inc. in May of 2022.
The 521-523 Cambridge Street project will create a 6-story, 33-unit residential building in Allston. Five units will be income-restricted. Located within the Allston-Brighton Mobility Study, this is a transit-oriented development that will place residents near the MBTA Green Line, multiple bus routes, and half a mile from the commuter rail. The project will also contribute to the area’s overall walkability and add green space to Cambridge Street.
A new project will turn vacant lots into two buildings with a total of 22 income-restricted condominium units and retail space at 114-122 Harvard Street and 18-24 Standish Street in Dorchester. The units will be aimed at moderate income households. Collectively, the buildings will have almost 6,000sf of open green/patio space available for residents, along with bike parking spaces. A new pedestrian-friendly sidewalk will also be created along Harvard Street.
The 34 B Street project in South Boston will transform an auto body shop and a vacant lot into a 6-story residential development with 45 apartments. Eight of the units will be income-restricted. There will also be a 2,200sf rooftop terrace and bike parking spaces. The project complies with the height, use, and lot coverage requirements established in PLAN: South Boston Dorchester Avenue, as well as the urban design guidelines.
The project at 55 Summer Street in the downtown neighborhood will renovate the existing building and convert the upper floors from office space to research laboratory and office space. It will also include the redesign of the public plaza onsite and more than $500,000 in improvements to the public realm. Public realm improvements were reviewed in alignment with the ongoing PLAN: Downtown planning study.
The BPDA board also approved consulting services to modernize the review and approval of large scale development in the city of Boston. The development review process, known as Article 80, has not been comprehensively analyzed or updated since its adoption in 1996.
The modernization project will study the existing development review process operations and recommend improvements for how communities, developers, and the BPDA work together to more predictably shape development in the city. This will not impact development projects that are currently under review by the BPDA while the study is ongoing and any recommended changes to these processes, which come out of the studies, will go through community and BPDA board review prior to implementation.
- The board approved changes to Article 28 to improve the participation of the Boston Civic Design Commission (BCDC) in the review process. The changes are designed to bring greater diversity of expertise to the commission, allow the BCDC to be better integrated with the BPDA’s internal review process, and ensure that review can be provided on an efficient timeline.
- The board approved the hiring of an ombudsman to streamline the citywide permitting process following development project board approvals and ensure good housing projects can come onto the market more quickly.
- The board tentatively designated Lincoln Property Company and QuakerLane Capital to redevelop BPDA-owned Parcel U in the Raymond L. Flynn Marine Park (RLFMP) on the South Boston Waterfront.
- The board approved the disbursement of $275,000 in various amounts to six arts and culture organizations identified through the Mayor’s Office of Arts and Culture Cultural Space Fund program from contributions made by the Channel Center Project in Fort Point.