BU Development Thread

TomOfBoston

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The opening of the ground floor windows at CFA was announced in 2007. In 2008 BU suspended all capital improvements due to the Great Recession. It has taken 11 years to get the project restarted.
 

Life Coach Mike

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The opening of the ground floor windows at CFA was announced in 2007. In 2008 BU suspended all capital improvements due to the Great Recession. It has taken 11 years to get the project restarted.
I believe the building was an auto dealership, as were several along Comm Ave. The building's been blocked up at least since I was there in 1970. It was, at the time, the obvious solution to creating office space on a road that was truly ugly, noisy (with T trains) and lacked any appeal except to rush up and down Comm Ave to classes. It was almost at the tail end of the campus since little was developed west of it until the west campus dorms were built, the sports field improved and the hockey rink built. The armory was still owned by the state and the area behind was undeveloped. West campus was considered back then "jock haven" and rather isolated from the rest of the campus.
 

Rover

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I read in maybe BU Today an article about how the windows were covered over because breaking big windows was the thing to do at the time and those were a bit too tempting for the local vandals in the area. Not sure how true that is but it was given as an explanation. Not sure if that was done by BU or someone else. I don't know how long they've owned the building,
 

bdurden

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^nice, thanks bdurden. Is it correct to assume that the gallery space that seems to be being removed in the renovations at 808 Comm. across the street will be replaced by gallery space here?

Overall, looks great! When combined with the sidewalk improvements in the area, this is quite the upgrade in walking experience along this stretch.
There is already gallery space at 805 - as a part of the restoration of the facade the Stone Gallery at 805 will be renovated and visible from the street. There has also been major interior upgrades to the building over the last 10 years and that continues.
 

bdurden

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I am unsure if this makes up for the loss of some of the gallery space at 808, however the addition of the Howard Thurman center at 808 should also be a major pedestrian upgrade there.
 

bdurden

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Seems to be helping to breakup the banality of the existing surrounding structures.
 

ErnieAdams

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AB exclusive: I think I'm the first to report (having just randomly stumbled across it in Norfolk registry records) BU's $50m purchase of 730-766 Commonwealth Ave. from an entity controlled by Druker. The sale was recorded last Thursday; link to deed here. Across the street from the central campus and technically on the Brookline side of the line, this parcel encompasses everything between St. Mary's Street, Comm. Ave., Carlton Street and the Pike. The cluster of buildings includes a CVS, Pavement coffee and Nud Pob (Thai food), and formerly housed Radio Shack and Guitar Center.

BU was already a huge tenant along this strip, operating a number of engineering/innovation type facilities as well as two parking areas. Their presence made it hard to remember that they didn't already own anything here, but the fact that they didn't helps to explain why it has been kept low-rise and low-priority for so long. I wonder what they'll want to do now?
 

HenryAlan

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Interesting -- I always thought they already owned this parcel. It is ripe for something more substantial, as it is so well located at the center of campus.
 

stellarfun

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That looks to be about three acres of land, more or less. Perhaps BU might develop it, and use lease income to help fund the university's operations. The current zoning is, if I am reading correctly, M1.5 and M 2.0, which has a max height limit of 50 feet.
 

Rover

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Good. That parcel could use some sprucing up. Not sure what the CVS building was originally built for (a car showroom?) but that ugly parking garage and the converted gas station can go. Not sure what other academic buildings the school is looking to build at this point but a great opportunity to do something nice.
 

ErnieAdams

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That looks to be about three acres of land, more or less. Perhaps BU might develop it, and use lease income to help fund the university's operations. The current zoning is, if I am reading correctly, M1.5 and M 2.0, which has a max height limit of 50 feet.
And the FY2020 tax bill was $803,648. The town will no doubt be keen to keep the property on the commercial tax rolls. Several of the BU-owned parcels on this side of Comm. Ave. are classified as partially exempt, partially commercial.
 

Equilibria

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Good. That parcel could use some sprucing up. Not sure what the CVS building was originally built for (a car showroom?) but that ugly parking garage and the converted gas station can go. Not sure what other academic buildings the school is looking to build at this point but a great opportunity to do something nice.
The CVS has a nice facade. Hope they do something with the parking deck.
 

TomOfBoston

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Surprised that BU put so much money into the EPIC building as a leased property.
 

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