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Revamped plan for McDonald's lot offers more housing

Posted by Johanna Kaiser  August 27, 2012 11:42 AM

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A residential and retail building slated to be built on Boylston Street in the West Fens will have a smaller footprint and more housing units than originally proposed.

Developers of the proposed mixed-used building at 1282 Bolyston St., presented widely supportive residents with a new plan for their project on the parking lot commonly referred to as the McDonald’s lot.

The new plan removes 100,000 square feet of office space originally planned for the fourth through sixth floors and replaces it with residential units. The original proposal for the building with office space was approved by the city last year.

“I think that’s a great story especially from the perspective of the neighborhood. I think the impact of that is a good one,” William Keravuori, of The Abbey Group, said at the public presentation Thursday.

The change will allow a total of 320 housing units ranging from studios to three-bedroom units to be built in the 342,000-square-foot building that will also include 12,000 square feet of street level retail space and 295 underground parking spaces.

The additional housing units will likely be condominiums allowing more home ownership in the neighborhood.

“We see it as an opportunity, but we also see it as a demand,” said Keravuori.

Of the 320 units, 36 will be designated as affordable housing for residents with moderate incomes. That’s an increase of 15 affordable units from the first proposal.

The building as it is proposed now is very similar to the original plan, said Keravuori, but is slimmed down and moved farther away from the neighboring buildings on Peterborough Street.

The building’s footprint is smaller than before because residential units do not need to be as deep as offices. An additional partial floor has also been added to the top of the building.

In addition to retail space, the first floor of the building will also house a community room open to neighborhood residents and groups. The community center will be attached to a cafe and will be able to accommodate individual seating, small meetings, or large gatherings.

“We’re not providing it here; we’re providing it here,” said Keravuori, motioning to the residents at the meeting. “We’re building it, but this needs to be a team effort.”

The changed project must be re-approved by the Boston Redevelopment Authority.
Residents can submit comments about the project to the authority until Monday, September 10.
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Twitter: @YTFenwayKenmore
E-mail: johanna.yourtown@gmail.com

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