Allston Post | 25-39 Harvard Avenue | Allston

Equilibria

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Where are you getting these figures? The LOI says one building with 170 units.
 
Awesome--this area of Allston Village has way too many surface parking lots given the density of the neighborhood. I'm hoping the nearby CVS parcel will eventually be redeveloped as well.
 
Awesome--this area of Allston Village has way too many surface parking lots given the density of the neighborhood. I'm hoping the nearby CVS parcel will eventually be redeveloped as well.
The one on Comm Ave? There's a proposal there for a big apt building
 
For reference, this is what the parcel looks like from street level (9.30). Any residential building should be a big upgrade!

Harvard CVS Lot.JPG
 
This really gives you a sense of how much new housing has been approved in the area!

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Stash that nasty, horrid housing by the train tracks and highway. God forbid anyone actually has to SEE that hideous density. Nobody should have to suffer something so disgusting, but I suppose that's what blighted areas are for...
 
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Stash that nasty, horrid housing by the train tracks and highway. God forbid anyone actually has to SEE that hideous density. Nobody should have to suffer something so disgusting, but I suppose that's what blighted areas are for...

Umm... I get what you're saying, but doesn't everyone see it if it's right next to the highway (and it also helps block highway noise)?

Also, the Harvard/Cambridge intersection isn't a blighted edge spot - it's actually a pretty busy, prominent location.
 
I assumed the previous post had been sarcasm/humor. If not.... yikes.
 
Umm... I get what you're saying, but doesn't everyone see it if it's right next to the highway (and it also helps block highway noise)?

Also, the Harvard/Cambridge intersection isn't a blighted edge spot - it's actually a pretty busy, prominent location.
Just observing the fact that we mostly get density where vacant lots and/or undesirable areas happen to already be. Of course that will be the way it is, but the reality is we need to be a lot more open to tearing down existing buildings that most of us on here would consider attractive and historical, in order to really make a difference.

In other words, we aren't doing anything really visionary which is the level needed in this region to turn the housing problem in the other direction. When we find clusters of density, we shouldn't know without looking that it's next to a highway, or a former rail yard, or a former industrial site, etc. Developing those sites makes sense, but it's also low hanging fruit that offends nobody and misses the point that we actually need to demolish lower density areas. And that's much harder and makes a lot more people uncomfortable because older housing stock looks nice, "is historic" etc.

Boston in say, 1890, did not cling to historic structures the way we do now. And if it had, we never would have had a city.
 
....but the reality is we need to be a lot more open to tearing down existing buildings that most of us on here would consider attractive and historical, in order to really make a difference.

I argue for the completely different approach of actually allowing the proper height and density on these open parcels to make the difference that needs to be made. Boston wouldn't be Boston without the historical neighborhoods tying it all together. These buildings should be 4-5 times as tall. Otherwise we come to the point where people like you advocate tearing down a bunch of historical 3-4 story buildings to get replaced with 6-7 story junky tinderboxes (cause it will be "more like Paris"). I say keep the history, whether it be Paris-scaled or not, and go as big and bold as possible on the open lots to meet demand.
 
I argue for the completely different approach of actually allowing the proper height and density on these open parcels to make the difference that needs to be made. Boston wouldn't be Boston without the historical neighborhoods tying it all together. These buildings should be 4-5 times as tall. Otherwise we come to the point where people like you advocate tearing down a bunch of historical 3-4 story buildings to get replaced with 6-7 story junky tinderboxes (cause it will be "more like Paris"). I say keep the history, whether it be Paris-scaled or not, and go as big and bold as possible on the open lots to meet demand.
I agree with the sentiment but the fact is that once upon a time development proceeded as needed and now we are all stuck in some version of rejecting modernity. I love Boston for what it is but the neighborhoods simply can’t be preserved as they are and also have Boston remain affordable (it already isn’t). The back bay is now a museum and if you really want most of the rest of the charming neighborhoods to likewise be a museum of what things once were like, inhabited by ultra wealthy, well, that’s the path we’re on now. Change is hard, but part of accepting what we need is realizing we can’t have our cake and eat it too.
 
I think theres also a fairly easy happy medium path that should be taken first before we even need to think about bulldozing low density neighborhoods. The first would be as mentioned, adding lots of density abutting highways, on old industrial sites, parking lots, and empty lots (especially around transit). Theres still far too many empty/underutilized lots across the city that could be dense housing.

After that theres hundreds/thousands of single story retail buildings lining roads across the entire metro area along with strip malls and other single use buildings. Adding 3-5 stories of housing above these while maintaining the ground floor retail would be another one of the easiest ways to infill lots of density without displacing ppl.

Heres an example right on Beacon st where theres a strip of single story retail buildings flanked by a 4 story residential building on one side and a 3 story residential on the other.
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Buildings like these exist on every main road in Boston and hundreds/thousands of other roads. Theres no reason you couldnt have a 4 story residential building here and have the exact same retail situation at ground level. Adding housing above all of these buildings would keep the feel of the city the same while adding thousands of new units of housing.

Heres another on commonwealth, theyre everywhere.
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I think theres also a fairly easy happy medium path that should be taken first before we even need to think about bulldozing low density neighborhoods. The first would be as mentioned, adding lots of density abutting highways, on old industrial sites, parking lots, and empty lots (especially around transit). Theres still far too many empty/underutilized lots across the city that could be dense housing.

After that theres hundreds/thousands of single story retail buildings lining roads across the entire metro area along with strip malls and other single use buildings. Adding 3-5 stories of housing above these while maintaining the ground floor retail would be another one of the easiest ways to infill lots of density without displacing ppl.

Heres an example right on Beacon st where theres a strip of single story retail buildings flanked by a 4 story residential building on one side and a 3 story residential on the other.
View attachment 46037

Buildings like these exist on every main road in Boston and hundreds/thousands of other roads. Theres no reason you couldnt have a 4 story residential building here and have the exact same retail situation at ground level. Adding housing above all of these buildings would keep the feel of the city the same while adding thousands of new units of housing.

Heres another on commonwealth, theyre everywhere.
View attachment 46038
The very fact that we have to exert effort at avoiding disturbing the current fabric shows that it’s difficult to actually do what needs to be done. I like things the way they are, personally, but as I said before, we are headed toward having a museum of that rather than a real city.
 

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