Boylston Place (née Scape Student Housing) | 1252-1268 Boylston Street | Fenway

JumboBuc

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SOJUba is decamping from this building for the old Tony C's space directly across the street. [source] I see this a win. SOJUba, if you haven't been, is a pretty unique spot that has a good business going for itself. With the move they'll be able to stay in the neighborhood and expand significantly into a bigger space (including a roof deck!). It's also interesting to me that a baseball-focused sports bar is being replaced by a club-y Korean bar / lounge / restaurant in that space, since the landlord is the Boston Red Sox Organization.

So now we know where the Baseball Tavern and SOJUba are going. I believe that Sleep-a-rama closed. Domino's and GNC are chains that can go anywhere (I think they'd work well along Ortiz drive in the bottom-level retail at the new Fenway Center Phase I). Machine is now the only non-chain with an uncertain future.
 

shmessy

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Bancars -- its called a Street -- and its a major arterial for a reason it has the function of moving vehicles from one part of the city to another -- there is no room for a "Road Diet"

In my humble opinion we have too many cliche's commonly embedded in these discussions without any care as to whether their inclusion is apropos to the discussion: Road Diet, Induced Demand, etc.
Here's another cliche: Dinosaur.

.
 

jass

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This stretch of Boylston desperately needs a road diet. Given the streetwall and amenities here, the pedestrian and cyclist experience is rather dismal.
I attended public meetings for a road diet in 2008/2009

They said it would go in as soon as construction on X building was done.

Edit, found my post:

I was at the meeting the other day where the Boylston street redesign was presented again. Its the semi final design.

Widened sidewalks (from 7 to 15 feet) - This will be done by setting back all properties. The Triology and 1330 are already set back.

Street parking on both sides, with exceptions in front of the gas stations and possibly the Hojo.

Bike lanes (comm ave style, they were against the better, traffic sheilded ones)

Two lanes each way

The new street may or may not have a traffic signal on Boylston. new street will go from boylston, cross brookline ave, connect with an existing street, cross parcel 7, cross beacon and meet with an existing street.


Also talked about was the redesign of Audubon circle, essentially, bike lanes to be added, beacon to be reduced to two lanes (at the brookline border three suddenly become two) and the turn lanes to be removed and replaced with pedestrian plazas.

If you squint you can see some images that were hosted on photobucket
 

found5dollar

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Apparently applications were just filed to demolish Machine/Ramrod. A rendering I haven't seen is here too.

I will remain very skeptical of "the Boylston Black Box, a 10,000-square-foot LGBTQ-centric venue for the performing arts." You can't just wish a queer space into being. Particularly one with high overhead and an operator not known to the community, which I am sure this will be. How long untill it turns into just a concert venue where Scissor Sisters performs once ever 4 years?

 
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Hydrobus

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Apparently applications were just filed to demolish Machine/Ramrod. A rendering I haven't seen is here too.

I will remain very skeptical of "the Boylston Black Box, a 10,000-square-foot LGBTQ-centric venue for the performing arts." You can't just wish a queer space into being. Particularly one with high overhead and an operator not known to the community, which I am sure this will be. How long untill it turns into just a concert venue where Scissor Sisters performs once ever 4 years?

Its not exactly wishing it into being. I think the idea is it will be the space for the gold dust orphans theatre group which already exist. But yes, overall another sad moment for shrinking gay life in Boston. But the additional housing is great and will be pretty dense.
 

Roxxma

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Apparently applications were just filed to demolish Machine/Ramrod. A rendering I haven't seen is here too.

I will remain very skeptical of "the Boylston Black Box, a 10,000-square-foot LGBTQ-centric venue for the performing arts." You can't just wish a queer space into being. Particularly one with high overhead and an operator not known to the community, which I am sure this will be. How long untill it turns into just a concert venue where Scissor Sisters performs once ever 4 years?

That and the Baseball Tavern is apparently being relocated into the new building. Why can't they do the same with Ramrod and Machine?
 

Sprngh2o

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Its not exactly wishing it into being. I think the idea is it will be the space for the gold dust orphans theatre group which already exist. But yes, overall another sad moment for shrinking gay life in Boston. But the additional housing is great and will be pretty dense.
Is it shrinking because there are fewer gays?
 

cjbski

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How long until that Sunoco gas station sells and something small goes in?
 

George_Apley

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That and the Baseball Tavern is apparently being relocated into the new building. Why can't they do the same with Ramrod and Machine?
The owner of Machine is done and wants to retire. But also I don't think the developers wanted to put a dance club in their project.

Is it shrinking because there are fewer gays?
Lol... no. Gay culture has shifted away from clubs as more public spaces have become safer and more welcoming. But at the same time the community laments the loss of those dedicated spaces.
 

sm89

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Apparently applications were just filed to demolish Machine/Ramrod. A rendering I haven't seen is here too.

I will remain very skeptical of "the Boylston Black Box, a 10,000-square-foot LGBTQ-centric venue for the performing arts." You can't just wish a queer space into being. Particularly one with high overhead and an operator not known to the community, which I am sure this will be. How long untill it turns into just a concert venue where Scissor Sisters performs once ever 4 years?

I'm imagining something similar to Oberon in Cambridge?
 

found5dollar

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Its not exactly wishing it into being. I think the idea is it will be the space for the gold dust orphans theatre group which already exist. But yes, overall another sad moment for shrinking gay life in Boston. But the additional housing is great and will be pretty dense.
Except the Gold Dust Orphans explicitly do not perform in black box spaces. They are a small proscenium space troup. And they only have one or two productions a year. What will the space be used for the rest of the time, and when will the operator realize they can make more money doing stuff that is not explicitly queer?

Sorry if I seem like a negative Nancy, I've just seen this happen over and over again in city after city I've lived in. "We are tearing down this historic queer space, but dont worry we will build a cleaner nicer version of it!" Fast forward a few years and it is just another generic straight centric space. Hell, Julius' in NYC, the second most important historic gay bar in the city, looks like it may not make it through the pandemic. It's just, I'll believe they put an LGBT+ centric theater in this space when I see it. It's all just pinkwashing.
 
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joegenius

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Is it shrinking because there are fewer gays?
I have been an employee of Ramrod/machine for 9 1/2 years. A decline in discrimiation against gays has hurt all gay clubs. A decline in dance music, with ProTools and Dance Pad readily available to all and perhaps most decisively the antagonisn towards masculine gay men are important cultural factors. Finally the West Fens' era of being undervalued has long since passed.
 

JumboBuc

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Construction fencing is going up for this now. They've put down a new asphalt curb at the outside of what used to be the parking lane on Boylston, and it looks like they're getting ready to put down a new temporary sidewalk out there too.
 

joegenius

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Construction fencing is going up for this now. They've put down a new asphalt curb at the outside of what used to be the parking lane on Boylston, and it looks like they're getting ready to put down a new temporary sidewalk out there too.
Work has begun.
 

DAVE

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The owner of Machine is done and wants to retire. But also I don't think the developers wanted to put a dance club in their project.



Lol... no. Gay culture has shifted away from clubs as more public spaces have become safer and more welcoming. But at the same time the community laments the loss of those dedicated spaces.
I don't necessarily buy this argument. I think even while there is 'more acceptance', that hasn't led to fewer gays going to queer specific venues. Not to be overly anecdotal but I'm a young gay and most of my gay friends I know still (pre-pandemic) go to gay bars more frequently than het-bars.

I think it has to do with the overall demand of commercial space going up throughout the city, and because queer people are in the minority no matter what, queer spaces have to compete with straight bars that will inherently have a much higher demand/clientele base. This bar especially hurts because it attracted both younger people and more QPOC.
 

George_Apley

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I don't necessarily buy this argument. I think even while there is 'more acceptance', that hasn't led to fewer gays going to queer specific venues. Not to be overly anecdotal but I'm a young gay and most of my gay friends I know still (pre-pandemic) go to gay bars more frequently than het-bars.

I think it has to do with the overall demand of commercial space going up throughout the city, and because queer people are in the minority no matter what, queer spaces have to compete with straight bars that will inherently have a much higher demand/clientele base. This bar especially hurts because it attracted both younger people and more QPOC.
Yeah, it's not a matter of gay bars vs het bars. It's that the bars are less central to the community than they were in previous decades. But I take your point. It's more complicated than that. There aren't as many entrepreneurs setting up *new* gay bars/clubs anymore as the previous generation of owners moves on. Also, just generally, clubs tend to be "hole-in-the-wall" places that end up ripe for redevelopment (Paradise, Machine, Estate), and when they're gone... they're gone. Club Cafe and Legacy are legit the only dedicated LGBT club spaces left. Royale still had their Candibar gay nights. For bars there's Trophy Room, The Alley, Eagle, Cathedral Station, dbar. Dbar and Cathies are the most recent "new editions" and they tried to fill the gaps in the club scene by doing party nights. It's just not a very diverse landscape (and it never was in Boston).
 

gac108

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Yeah, it's not a matter of gay bars vs het bars. It's that the bars are less central to the community than they were in previous decades. But I take your point. It's more complicated than that. There aren't as many entrepreneurs setting up *new* gay bars/clubs anymore as the previous generation of owners moves on. Also, just generally, clubs tend to be "hole-in-the-wall" places that end up ripe for redevelopment (Paradise, Machine, Estate), and when they're gone... they're gone. Club Cafe and Legacy are legit the only dedicated LGBT club spaces left. Royale still had their Candibar gay nights. For bars there's Trophy Room, The Alley, Eagle, Cathedral Station, dbar. Dbar and Cathies are the most recent "new editions" and they tried to fill the gaps in the club scene by doing party nights. It's just not a very diverse landscape (and it never was in Boston).
There's also Blend, just up the block from DBar in Dorchester. Trophy is questionable if it will survive post-pandemic. There are numerous other gay bar or gay-friendly bars/restaurants throughout the South End and other areas, but few new ones in the pipeline. I've heard rumors of a couple new bars/restaurants opening in Somerville and Cambridge by gay owners that are planned to cater to LGBTQ clientele, so we'll see. The pandemic has of course changed many plans though unfortunately.
 

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