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In advance of community meeting, developer changes facade of controversial West Roxbury building from mega-bland to mansard, but doesn't reduce building's size

New rendering of Centre Street building

New rendering by AD Architect features mansard roof, but retains ivy on chimney.

A developer that wants to replace a shuttered bank branch and a decaying old house on Centre Street in West Roxbury with a four-story, 21-unit condo building has filed new plans that replace the initially proposed generic cladding common to new mid-rise buildings everywhere in the country with a mansard motif.

CAD Builders will formally show off the new look at a community meeting that starts at 6 p.m. on Monday.

The developer's representative, Chris Tracey, had promised to come back with a new design at a meeting of the West Roxbury Neighborhood Council's zoning committee last month after everybody on the Zoom call basically went: Ugh.

Reviled initial proposal:

Even Mikey didn't like this design

However, other than the exterior, the plans remain the same, which could raise additional criticism, based on that zoning-committee meeting, at which people expressed concern about replacing two commercial buildings - the old house was last occupied as a real-estate office - with another residential building. At last month's meeting, CAD representative Chris Tracey said CAD doesn't play games and propose buildings larger than it wants to pretend to compromise with residents but instead proposed what it really wants to build.

Unlike in other neighborhoods, where putting residential units in a commercial district has been praised as bringing more potential customers and life, nearby residents and Centre Street business owners said that they feared what one called a "condo canyon" that would mean less business for Centre Street.

In addition to the residential condos, the building would have one small commercial condo on the ground floor.

New design (1.8M PDF).

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We don't even know how badly the neighborhood will be ruined by the building on the site of the inhaler factory and now this! Also it's unfair to the local community of drivers who need to drive to the Starbucks in their Chevy Tahoes to have to now worry about people 'not from here' possibly using the local crosswalks.

Voting closed 54

Watch out for what's coming there next.

Voting closed 16

This, which has some people all riled up? Or something even bigger and scarier?

Voting closed 14

Cafe space on Birch St?
Housing above Wallpaper City, on Cummins Hwy, Belgrade and beyond?
A bike lane from Forrest Hills to the Square?

Voting closed 17

The exam school entrance updates and a couple new condo buildings should be enough to put more of these closed minded people over the edge.
It’s a seller’s market! Let’s see those For Sale signs! Take the cash and head to the cape.
West Roxbury gets better every time a house turns over.

Voting closed 32

I like the old one more better.

Voting closed 13

How about any color?

Voting closed 16

The 3rd floor is black now and looks like tiles.

Voting closed 6