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Herb Chambers proposes large gray box to sell expensive English cars on Comm. Ave.

Proposed Herb Chambers Jaguar and Land Rover dealership

The Herb Chambers Companies have filed their detailed plans to replace Honda and Infiniti dealerships on Commonwealth Avenue near Harvard Avenue with three floors of Jaguar and Land Rover sales and service space.

The proponent’s intent is to develop a category-leading, first-class new facility that will contribute meaningfully to the Commonwealth Avenue streetscape. The Project building will be contemporary in style, featuring a streamlined design.

Inside, would-be buyers will find " customer amenities, including lounges."

The building will house spaces for 322 vehicles, with a lot striped for roughly 66 parking spaces.

Proposed dealership and neighboring buildings:

Proposed dealersip and neighboring buildings

Presentation to the Boston Civic Design Commission (9.7M PDF).
Project-notification form (12.3M PDF).

Neighborhoods: 
Ad:

Comments

The last thing we need is more cars or people buying more cars.

Just build more housing

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You're welcome to put up your own money and do so.

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is a full citywide rezoning because this kind of development and building type should've been written out years ago, at least within xx miles of the urban core.

The craziest part of this is the site has an allowable FAR of 1. Seriously?

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there's a reason why all the buildings along this corridor are so structurally sound and the intersection of Comm Ave & Brighton is called Packard's corner. Herb Chambers is the last of it's kind and is still a viable concern. The only reason the other buildings were rezoned is because BU bought them. They own the property - you think the city should rezone it out from under them to deal with housing? Housing is needed but not by seizing private properties. If was more profitable for them to sell to a developer, they would, just like multiple other sites that could be made into high density housing. Free market man

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Been awhile since I've been in the area of Comm. Ave. and Brighton Ave.

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The Toyota place is still there on Brighton Ave. Herb Chambers bought it several years ago, so now it's Herb Chambers Toyota.

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They're separate dealerships but all part the Herb Chambers empire.

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You ride a bike? Take the T? That hasn’t been so reliable lately, has it? Must be even more miserable when it’s colder. You can torture yourself all you want, but I’ll take my car, thanks

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"meaningfully to the Commonwealth Avenue streetscape"

So a big ugly grey box that sticks out like a sore thumb. What BS is this? But knowing BPDA, it will be approved. Herb has deep pockets.

Sorry, Herb Chambers is why we don't have the A line anymore. He loses any ground with me because of that reason alone.

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I've never heard this before - do you have more info? Genuinely interested. Was the dealership located along that route? Current location is past the Packard's Corner split where the A line used to continue straight down Brighton. thx

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Comm Ave used to have car dealerships up and down it. In the 50s and 60s, they pushed to have the A line closed in hopes to sell more cars.

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I'm not saying you are wrong, just that absent proof it is just a theory. I mean, the dealerships began at the BU Bridge, and this location still has trolleys running by it. One would guess that the Commonwealth Avenue line would have been pushed out of existence, too. The MTA curtained a lot of streetcar routes during this time period. In the 1950s there were 5 streetcar routes running out of the Arborway yard.

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woaah one second

Im gonna evidence of that

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Who Framed Roger Rabbit

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I hate to be catty like this about a building proposal, especially knowing that this will replace the same land use, but this is an ugly building. And at that I think the idea of having auto dealerships near transit is a good thing.

Surely they can dress up this turd a bit, perhaps by putting in some other commercial on the first floor.

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Are the Sears and/or Toys R Us buildings empty yet in Dedham???

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Sears has been empty for a couple of months now. The Toys R Us just started the first liquidation sales, so that might be another month or so.

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Last ran in 1969.

Herb Chambers opened his first car dealership (in Connecticut) in 1985.

Are you accusing him of time travel?

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Didn't you know that in 1985 he had a dealership in Hill Valley California also?

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When he was in his late 20s (and apparently in the Navy according to his Wiki), Herb Chambers conspired to kill one branch of a 4 brand subway line in Allston. (How he did this? Fuck you, that's a lizard person question...)

Then, he waited 20 years to open car dealerships in Connecticut and California to profit off of all this clandestine work killing public transit in Massachusetts. Because if there's one thing car dealers hate, it's people without cars being able to easily access their locations.

That bastard!

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It wasnt Herb, it was Marty, Doc and the Time Machine that went back to 1965 to work with car dealers on Comm Ave to get rid of the A line.

Silliness aside, it may have not been a direct result of Herb Chambers, but car dealerships have been on Comm Ave for decades.

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Much burn.

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You could tell they were having a real hard time coming with any whatsoever. Like this one too:

"Sustainable Design/Green Building
The Proponent is committed to building a LEED certifiable project, incorporating sustainable design features into the Project to preserve and protect the environment. "

Well I hope so considering any large project in the city of Boston MUST be built to a LEED certifiable level.

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LEED has some serious shortcomings if buildings designed purely for the storage and sale of cars can earn high marks, especially since transportation is now the single largest contributor of greenhouse gas emissions in Massachusetts.

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While LEED absolutely has shortcomings (the joke used to be you could just add bike racks and you're certified), the extremely strict Mass energy code for buildings also puts most projects well within reach of at least achieving base LEED certification because the rating system weighs so heavily to energy consumption, and projects in MA (because of the code) are already substantially better performing than most buildings in other states.

And while LEED does deal with a building's purpose, it does so using a variety of rating systems that cater to various project types for the sole reason of being inclusive and making the system more widespread.

For example, if a building type whose purpose was not sustainable could not get certified, but that building type is still relevant and will be built, then it would be impossible for a municipality to specify LEED certifiability, thereby diminishing the influence of the system overall.

For more stringent systems you can see PassivHaus or Living Building Challenge. But the goal of LEED is really to be a more catch all, not the end all be all of sustainable building.

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This is the polar opposite of the sort of development Allston needs. Best case scenario is that this gets shut down and Herb Chambers moves its entire operation to somewhere that isn't an ideal location to build high density residential. We can argue about Brighton's long term future, but there is simply no room for car dealerships in Allston if we're making wise choices about land usage.

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Herb Chambers wanted to buy the old WLVI site on Morrissey Blvd and put in a luxury dealership. Not sure it was Jaguars. Neighborhood nixed it. The site has been sitting empty for years.

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Considering how much money Chambers has stuffed into Curtatone's pockets over the last 15 years, I woulda thought that he could pick the parcel he wanted, and Joe would get his planning department to screw whatever neighbors needed to be screwed to deliver up the goods for him.

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IMAGE(https://img.etsystatic.com/il/b27121/1061059936/il_570xN.1061059936_eb6l.jpg?version=2)

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Well played.

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Adorable!

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IMAGE(https://elmercatdotorg.files.wordpress.com/2018/04/lego.png)

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I think you're more than qualified to have a show at the ICA.

"Adorable: Post-Deconstruction of Auto Sales Company in the 21st Century".

Summary: "This witty and consciousness-raising exhibit results in questions about
the automobile industry in provocative methods".

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IMAGE(https://sullydish.files.wordpress.com/2013/07/screen-shot-2013-07-28-at-5-38-18-pm.png)

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I'd never buy a Ranger Rover or Jaguar from any dealership of less than 4 stories; let the plebeians shop at this one.

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Money talks and rubs elbows. Herb Chambers (who comes from Dorchester and started out as a repairman) and is now a member of the coveted Forbes List, gets whatever he f'n wants. I once saw him climbing out of his McLaren in front of Starbucks on Newbury Street (back when Newbury Street was popular for shopping) and I decided to say, "Oh look, it's Ernie Boch!" His expression froze and it was priceless!!

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Guy comes from humble background and makes himself a multi-millionaire. What an asshole. Great job mocking him!

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The obnoxious people who drive up and down Newbury just because they want attention deserve to be mocked.

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You mean the people with money who shop on Newbury? The very people keeping those stores in business in this day and age of internet shopping? Perhaps you'd like some more empty storefronts to look at instead? Oh wait, car, sorry. I forgot that was a trigger word for you. But hey, thanks for taking a break from shaking your fist at traffic to chime in on this!

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that people should not be despised for making a lot of money. They should, however, be watched carefully, because money has a tendency to make people think that they should be able to do whatever they want.

Anyway, as mockery goes, it was pretty gentle, and pretty funny.

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The building on the right has a ton of windows on the side facing Herb. They get screwed by this.

Streetview
https://goo.gl/maps/X3zfpEzUNat

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Hopefully I can get my Aston Martin serviced here. Driving all the way to Waltham is a drag. I'm sure the other brands will sell here as well. Lots of wealthy people in Boston these days, finally.

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I can't wait to vote for the millionaires tax this fall.

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Wow, you wear your jealousy on your sleeve. Impressive!
I mean, why does it bother you so much that others have much more?
It must be an awful way to live.

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And your true colors come out. Green being your primary color. You hate people who can't afford to live in the city and hate people who can afford to live in the city. You are a really miserable person aren't you?

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I've reloaded this page about 10 or 12 times, and every time it comes up with ads related to new cars, Including, once, an ad for a Herb Chambers dealership.

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Contextual advertising :-).

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If I was Herb, I would make the argument that having a large dealership filled with ostentatious cars at this location will in fact help reduce traffic because much of my clientele will be coming from the school down the street.

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They seem to prefer fancy German cars, not holdovers from when Britannia ruled the world.

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All-white Mange Movers with gold trim and illegally tinted windows.

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a British luxury car would be a better form of conspicuous consumption than a German one; it says "not only can I afford to own this car, I can afford to have it serviced constantly."

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increasing internal parking spots and those in back alleviates the impact in front. The existing building there is the personification of chaos. This will get cars in and out quicker at least.

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Both Land Rover and Jaguar have been owned by India's Tata Motors since 2008.

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.

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This dealership will do very well, because it will appeal to all the rich foreign students who can afford the absurd BU and BC tuitions.

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The adjacent BMW dealership has an absurdly busy service department and the Porsche dealer seems to do ok as well. I guess they've done the math and figured there's enough of a population segment that will buy Land Rover and Jaguar to turn a better profit than Honda and Infiniti.

PS. You misspelled Infiniti Adam.

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