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Hotel planned near airport

$32m project would transform 6 acres

By Casey Ross
Globe Staff / April 6, 2012
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A team of developers is proposing to build a 177-room Hilton Garden Inn and retail stores on six acres on Route 1A in East Boston, near Logan International Airport.

The $32 million project would fill a vacant rectangular lot at the corner of Boardman Street, where the developers also plan up to 400 parking spaces. The former industrial property sits at the edge of the Orient Heights neighborhood.

“We think this will be a very attractive addition to the area,’’ said James Karam, chief executive of First Bristol Corp. in Fall River. “The site is one mile from Logan Airport, so the hotel will be very attractive to people flying into the city for business and other reasons.’’

The project is one of several hotel developments beginning to move forward in Boston. After several years of economic troubles, the hospitality industry appears to be recovering steadily, making development feasible in select locations. In the Fenway, a developer recently began construction of a Marriott Residence Inn on Brookline Avenue; another extended-stay hotel is planned for the South Boston Waterfront.

The developers of the Hilton said it will be designed to cater to business travelers. They filed plans with the Boston Redevelopment Authority this week. Marshall Properties, of East Providence, is a partner on the project.

The Hilton would include a pool, a fitness center, and meeting space.

The developers also want to build two free-standing retail buildings, one for a restaurant, the other for a drugstore or other retailer.

The project could generate about $500,000 a year in tax revenue for the city, Karam said. He hopes to begin construction by the end of the year and open in 2014.

Casey Ross can be reached at cross@globe.com.

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