Old Boston Edison Plant | Summer St | South Boston

tangent

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So, no residential option then? Seems like they should have started there in the first place since they couldn't legally build residential. Let the port work.
 

jl326

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People talk of Southie as a single entity, but the absolute bulk of Southie's transformation is still in the western half -- especially the western third, west of Dorchester St, and to a lesser degree the middle third, between Dorchester St and L St. The western third is almost an extension of the South End now, and people seem to apply its changes to all of Southie, which isn't really the case.

Once you head east, approaching the L St area and east of that, it hasn't changed nearly as much, and you're still going to get a lot more people using cars in their daily life the further away you get from the Broadway T station, and thus more people worried about traffic/parking. I think it was last year when the city proposed to do a bus-only lane experiment on E Broadway for just one single block off L St, and outraged ensued, which was a good indication that the eastern half hasn't quite changed as much as people thought (this was also the same area as the Starbucks outrage).
I see. I was thinking of nearby areas such as parts of East 1st St. where there has been newer construction. But after looking a map, I realize those areas are indeed west of L St.
 

estyle

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I see. I was thinking of nearby areas such as parts of East 1st St. where there has been newer construction. But after looking a map, I realize those areas are indeed west of L St.
There has actually been a fair amount of new construction on E 1st between L and Farragut. Not as much in the lower end, but lots of 4ish story condo buildings.

TBH I find the demands for an all commercial development here irrational and very short sighted. They are asking for an office park, which is a closed environment. Adding some residential along the edge of the neighborhood is a nice bridge to the waterfront. I'd rather look at other appropriately scaled residential than at a big commercial building.
 

Rover

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TBH I find the demands for an all commercial development here irrational and very short sighted. They are asking for an office park, which is a closed environment. Adding some residential along the edge of the neighborhood is a nice bridge to the waterfront. I'd rather look at other appropriately scaled residential than at a big commercial building.
From the article:

"

U.S. Rep. Stephen Lynch — who last year requested Redgate and Hilco scale back their plans at the site — encouraged residents to be realistic when evaluating the project.

"Listen to the proposal and what they have to offer. Think about what it means for the community in the long term," he said. "Try to be pragmatic about what's the best we can do here."

Once the presentation was complete, community members in attendance spoke up, forming lines in front of microphones so they could deliver remarks. One of the earliest speakers summarized what seemed to be the general consensus in the room.

"I think we can all agree that no matter what, this is gonna suck," she said."

It sounds like the people attending the meeting want either nothing built or would like the developer to pay millions of dollars to put up a park and nothing else. When even Congressman Lynch is telling the audience to spend some time in reality, that's a sign to me that they're dealing with unreasonable people. The alternative is an empty power plant standing until the end of time.
 

JeffDowntown

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Also, This is very much a brownfield site. It is going to cost millions to clean up the site for any use..

No developer is going to take that on without a significant upside potential. (Cleanup costs can be very tricky to predict!). It is not like this is going to be a casino that basically prints money.
 

atlantaden

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When even Congressman Lynch is telling the audience to spend some time in reality, that's a sign to me that they're dealing with unreasonable people. The alternative is an empty power plant standing until the end of time.
Is this even a surprise to anyone? I mean, didn't Catholic Church just tear down the Gate of Heaven school to put up a parking lot after years of fighting with the intractable neighbors over possibly adding housing on the site? I mean, talk about cutting off your nose to spite your face!!
 

Cliff Clavin

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Has there been any discussion regarding bringing back the old SL City Point route? Believe it was SL3 at the time. The 7 bus won't be able to handle the influx of new residents and office workers.
 

odurandina

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Once the presentation was complete, community members in attendance spoke up, forming lines in front of microphones so they could deliver remarks. One of the earliest speakers summarized what seemed to be the general consensus in the room.

"I think we can all agree that no matter what, this is gonna suck," she said."

It sounds like the people attending the meeting want either nothing built or would like the developer to pay millions of dollars to put up a park and nothing else. When even Congressman Lynch is telling the audience to spend some time in reality, that's a sign to me that they're dealing with unreasonable people. The alternative is an empty power plant standing until the end of time.
This is just shocking i tell ya. What Southie joining the South End, East Boston,
Charlestown, Back Bay, Mission Hill, North End, West End.....
 

falcon42

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So frustrating. As a constituent, I'm fully on board with ANYTHING. A pink power plant is not the solution.

We live in an age where people just want to complain and protest development. Maybe looking at a proforma would help them. The site work alone makes several alternatives impossible. My question to them is, what do you want? They never seem to answer that.
 

jl326

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So frustrating. As a constituent, I'm fully on board with ANYTHING. A pink power plant is not the solution.

We live in an age where people just want to complain and protest development. Maybe looking at a proforma would help them. The site work alone makes several alternatives impossible. My question to them is, what do you want? They never seem to answer that.
Well, according to a previous post here, what some of them want is a parking lot/garage that will somehow be magically free for them to use. :lol:
 

HarvardP

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The either/or scenario the developer laid out is the wisest course of action given page 1 of the NIMBY playbook reads 'Stall for as long as humanly possible.'
As an aside, the idea this lot - a brownfield with significant clean-up entailed - would become a park or a parking garage for existing locals, because developers care, shows the old Southie mentality hasn't been gentrified out of existence.
 

JeffDowntown

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The either/or scenario the developer laid out is the wisest course of action given page 1 of the NIMBY playbook reads 'Stall for as long as humanly possible.'
As an aside, the idea this lot - a brownfield with significant clean-up entailed - would become a park or a parking garage for existing locals, because developers care, shows the old Southie mentality hasn't been gentrified out of existence.
Well, the old Southie mentality would also say, "don't botha with da cleanup, leave da bodies buried where de are."
 

Rover

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The either/or scenario the developer laid out is the wisest course of action given page 1 of the NIMBY playbook reads 'Stall for as long as humanly possible.'
As an aside, the idea this lot - a brownfield with significant clean-up entailed - would become a park or a parking garage for existing locals, because developers care, shows the old Southie mentality hasn't been gentrified out of existence.
It would be nice to have a sense of how much noise is being made by activist NIMBY's looking to get their names in the paper vs the community at large. I kinda doubt Lynch would stick his neck out in a public meeting like that if the community in general expected a park to be built and nothing else, but I'm not close to the situation.
 

odurandina

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Why should a neighborhood have that much of any say at all beyond making suggestions, if in the end iag's stacked with patron neighborhood bullies just use their implicit veto power/s to preserve the status quo, and succor a disastrously dysfunctional city? i laugh if someone suggests these people are anything but a bunch of self-serving assholes.

If you count the sum total of every nimby stronghold in Boston, (never mind the surrounding communities), short of drastic changes about who will be given the final say, how will anything change? You can't continue to do that without rendering a trend-line of Boston 2030 falling flat. Even the revised 2030 numbers are probably too low to bring real, positive change.

Worse, maybe Boston's attempt to reverse decades of mistakes will only ignite a new generation of nimby's. In the end–in terms of creating a community where the young people can afford to be here–maybe Boston is in fact, doomed. i believe a line has been crossed in recent months. If it keeps up: re; 1 Charlestown, Tremont Crossing, Edison Plant, LM's Harrison-Albany block (yes that one too), 45 Worthington, etc, w/ projects either delayed (for years), or the # of floors & proportionately/ the net affordable units slashed to the bone–or projects killed outright, it probably isn't unreasonable to conclude Boston probably is doomed. Look: Copley Tower, Columbus Ctr & Fenway Ctr (main tower) would have gotten built! Instead, a minority contingent of crazy loons have been remarkably successful at killing projects that would have been hugely beneficial and valuable additions to the City. Cape Cod has a shark problem and Boston has a nimby problem.
 
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tangent

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The old developer playbook of seeding the room with a bunch of fringe people to make the whole notion that there are reasonable people that oppose the project for reasonable reasons.

A shipping container port facility and residential are incompatible uses and need physical separation. Taxpayers and Massport have spent a lot of time and money to make that physical separation happen. The port facility is of vital economic interests... a bunch of condos aren't worth the time to even discuss if they at all could potentially interfere with the port of Boston's viability.

That said, residential fronting Summer and 1st St physically separated and with no exposure to the port facility operations are a reasonable compromise.

And looking at the neighborhood a bit. I think extending that green way down to the corner of 1st and Summer (or through the development to physically separate the residential and commercial sections) with a thirty foot wide tree lined strip with a path would be a reasonable trade and be in keeping with good public planning.
 

JeffDowntown

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A shipping container port facility and residential are incompatible uses and need physical separation. Taxpayers and Massport have spent a lot of time and money to make that physical separation happen. The port facility is of vital economic interests... a bunch of condos aren't worth the time to even discuss if they at all could potentially interfere with the port of Boston's viability.
This is a very valid argument and concern.

But is anything being proposed actually port oriented? I got the impression (potentially wrong) that the proposal is basically an office park that could be located almost anywhere?
 

whighlander

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The old developer playbook of seeding the room with a bunch of fringe people to make the whole notion that there are reasonable people that oppose the project for reasonable reasons.

A shipping container port facility and residential are incompatible uses and need physical separation. Taxpayers and Massport have spent a lot of time and money to make that physical separation happen. The port facility is of vital economic interests... a bunch of condos aren't worth the time to even discuss if they at all could potentially interfere with the port of Boston's viability.

That said, residential fronting Summer and 1st St physically separated and with no exposure to the port facility operations are a reasonable compromise.

And looking at the neighborhood a bit. I think extending that green way down to the corner of 1st and Summer (or through the development to physically separate the residential and commercial sections) with a thirty foot wide tree lined strip with a path would be a reasonable trade and be in keeping with good public planning.
None of that is really an argument against the proposed development of an old power plant site

Personally, I would have preferred a nice modern combined cycle natural gas generation site similar to what was recently installed at Everett with the rest of the land sold to a developer experienced in high/bio tech projects to extend the Seaport District economic zone -- the real goose with the golden eggs

Maritime-wise --- Boston will never be anything other than a regional container port it's just too easy to truck stuff from / to New York / NJ. I'd keep the dry dock and what fishing related stuff is still there and economically viable. By the way -- most of the fish processing being done in the Seaport can be done in any industrial building --and it doesn't need to be on the pier as the fish arrive in trucks and air cargo containers.

There is of course no reason to prevent the continued operation of the Conley Terminal including the construction of the new berthing space and new cranes.

Overall -- the development as proposed seems very reasonable if somewhat wishful with respect to the reuse of the old turbine halls as markets and perhaps a bit under dense given the obvious height constraints close to Logan.
 

tangent

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I like it overall, but the residential is too tall as it has a direct line of sight and line of sound to the haul road. Residential should not have a line of sight to the haul road. Residential along east 1st street should probably be no more than 8 stories(?) to make it work. Unless they do something a bit more creative with using the buildings along the waterfront to screen the road.
 

BMW

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I don’t get what the big deal is... if people want to purchase a condo within sight of the haul road that is their choice. What about all the ink block buildings facing 93? It could be a problem if this was specifically zoned non residential but I believe it is a perfect site for a very large residential project.
 

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