Developer plans mixed-use project in the Fenway
If the Boston real estate developer Samuels & Associates has its way, a portion of the Fenway is about to get much taller.
The company filed a letter of intent today with the Boston Redevelopment Authority announcing its plans to build two mixed-use buildings in the Fenway -- in the space of a parking lot, former Goodyear tire shop, and temporary food market on space it has owned for the past few years.
A building at 132 Brookline Avenue would house 170 apartments and retail space on the first floor, and a building at the corner of Boylston Street and Van Ness Street will hold 150 apartments, 200,000 square feet of retail space, and 225,000 square feet of office space. Developers also plan to build 500 parking spaces underground.
Steven Samuels, chief executive officer at Samuels & Associates called the two buildings part of his company's "master plan" for helping redevelop the Fenway area into a shopping district similar to Newbury Street and Boylston Street in the Back Bay.
"If you have to go to cross fifty feet of an empty parking lot or an automotive shop, it doesn't make a good shopping district," he said. "What will make the Fenway great is good, consistent, pedestrian-friendly retail that becomes unbroken in effect."
The letter of intent is the first step in starting the Boston Redevelopment Authority's review process. City officials said they were pleased by the proposal. "This is further proof that developers are still bullish on Boston," Mayor Thomas Menino said in a statement.
"We're excited that the Samuels & Associates team wants to redevelop these parcels as it will further enliven the district with a mix of uses ensuring a thriving 24-hour neighborhood," said John F. Palmieri, director of the Boston Redevelopment Authority, in a statement.