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Fabled development across from BPD headquarters morphs again

Developers of the long proposed Tremont Crossing project said today they're now proposing a smaller development without a hotel, with less office space and with no housing for students.

The BRA board today gave Elma Lewis Partners, LLC and Feldco Development Corp. yet more time to come up with their latest plans for the 7.25-acre site, a holdover from the canceled I-95 extension that today consists of trees and weeds.

Developers and a BRA staffer were unable to give a new timeframe for getting a proposal before the BRA for approval.

The BRA first gave Elma Lewis Partners rights to develop the property more than ten years ago. Earlier this year, the developers proposed a large mixed-use development including a big-box store, office space and housing for families and students.

Jeffrey Feldman of Feldco told the board the revised plans include 600 units of housing in multi-family buildings - none for students.

Buildings that earlier this year were planned to rise as much as 350 feet - or 31 stories - will now climb no more than 260 feet, Feldman said, adding there will be 100,000 square feet less office space than originally planned, and 25% less parking.

BRA board member Ted Landsmark noted the whole project has "dragged on for a considerable period of time" and asked what assurances developers could give that this time things would really happen.

A BRA staffer said the developers are "moving in the right direction."

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Comments

I hear a really top notch artisanal popsicle maker is moving back to town, maybe they can lure him to set up shop.

There are plenty of problems with developers and soft/hard corruption throughout the history of Boston, but this seems like the opposite with equally dismal results. Do Darnell L. Williams and his buddies from the Urban League know the first thing about actually, you know, developing a large scale multi, multi-million dollar development? We're in a building boom but they can't figure out how to make this work, right between the Orange and Silver lines? Maybe I'm missing some facts here but other non-profit entities (Urban Edge, etc...) seem to smaller scale stuff done without the delays.

Do we want more affordable housing near the core of the city with lots of community spaces and benefits? Or do we want this group of specific people to succeed to becoming developers in a protected situation? Seems like it would be better to have the development done vs. protecting the interests of this specific group.

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Tito supposedly kneecapped this project.

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What power does a city councilor have over the BRA? at all? They had their chance and blew it off.

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I thought they actually approved this today? Either way - pretty shitty they had to knock down the height by almost 100'.

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They just gave them another extension to file yet another revised project notification form.

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The older proposal with taller buildings looked much nicer due to diversity of heights. So silly to make all the buildings wider, shorter and of the same height. Looks fat and ugly now. Thanks Tito.

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Could you provide more information about your claim? It's possible you're thinking of the dormitory project down the street from this, near Columbus Ave & Burke St? If so, that did get approved, even though Councilor Jackson had some concerns, awhile back.

I don't think anyone ::forced:: the developer to reduce the size and density of this project, however. The change, reading between the lines, is because there isn't enough demand to warrant the project as proposed, most-recently.

This project has been through multiple economic cycles and, now, is coming up the end of another one (based on what the BRA's chief has been quoted saying ..). Hotel, retail, housing, offices, etc. ... and the band played on ....

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Was this the one they were going to put a BJs or Costco or whatever in? Is that still on the table? That always struck me as idiotic, considering the stark lack of parking. While it's totally feasible to pick up a couple nights of groceries from a stop and shop and hop on the T, the entire Costco model is "buy a carton of toilet paper as big as a six year old child" so I don't know why they thought it was appropriate for transit-oriented buildings.

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"asked what assurances developers could give that this time things would really happen"

hmmm. waiting 10 years sin't enough proof it's time for a new developer??

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