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New Balance to spend $500m to build HQ, sports complex, hotel in Brighton

Posted by Matt Rocheleau  May 31, 2012 12:07 PM

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nbrendering531.jpg

(Boston Redevelopment Authority)

A rendering of the Boston-based athletic apparel company's proposed development.

New Balance expects to spend half of a billion dollars to build its proposed development next to its current home in Brighton.

The company said Thursday that it hopes to complete construction within the next five years of 1.45 million square feet of space across a new headquarters, sports complex, hotel and up to three office buildings.

Company officials also said that if the state's transportation department allows it to do so, New Balance "will design, permit and construct a commuter rail station in Allston-Brighton" near to its project's site, but a separate endeavor from the $500 million development proposal.

The development, planned to be built on a 14-acre site along Guest Street, would include retail, restaurant, parking and green space, according to the company's latest and most-detailed filing released by the city Thursday.

The proposed site runs adjacent to the Massachusetts Turnpike and the Framingham / Worcester Line commuter rail tracks.

New Balance officials said previously that the company is “committed to looking at all options” to add a commuter rail station near the proposed development -- likely near Everett Street -- including that the company is willing to "assist in funding the station design, permitting and construction."

On Thursday, company spokeswoman Amy Dow said that New Balance is willing to fully take charge of the process of building a commuter rail station if the state transportation department were to give permission to the shoe company.

"If designated by MassDOT, New Brighton Landing will design, permit and construct a commuter rail station in Allston-Brighton," she said in an e-mail.

The company also hopes to extend Guest Street to connect to Everett Street among other roadway improvements.

The project -- among the top 10 largest proposed or ongoing development sites in Boston -- would be built in six phases starting with a three-month demolition and site preparation phase scheduled to begin this coming fall and new construction slated to start in 2013.

The headquarters, sports complex and the hotel are expected to be completed by 2015, the company spokeswoman Dow said Thursday. As many as three additional office buildings are expected to be built by 2017 "subject to market conditions."

Mayor Thomas M. Menino applauded plans and said the development will be a "tremendous community asset."

"This $500 million development will be a wonderful addition to the Brighton neighborhood and will add brand new recreation space for public use," he said in a statement Thursday. "I salute New Balance as a major local employer and I applaud its efforts to include the public in the new complex."

The Boston Redevelopment Authority, which oversees city approval of such proposals, has scheduled a public meeting for June 6 from 7 to 9 p.m. at the WGBH Auditorium on One Guest St. in Brighton.

The meeting will focus on the latest project filing, which was formally submitted to the city last Friday.

The public comment period on the filing will end at 5 p.m. on Aug. 8. Written comments can be submitted to: Mr. Erico Lopez, Senior Project Manager, BRA, Boston City Hall, One City Hall Plaza, Boston,MA 02201 or by email at erico.lopez.bra@cityofboston.gov.

To see more project details and read past coverage of the proposed project, click here and here.

E-mail Matt Rocheleau at mjrochele@gmail.com.
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