Cambridge Crossing (NorthPoint) | East Cambridge/Charlestown | Cambridge/Boston

FitchburgLine

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The special permit to change Q1 from hotel to office and permit occupancy of both Q1 and R before all Phase 1A/B buildings have been completes was approved on Dec 17. This allows two more office buildings very near GLX which will potentially be the next projects.
 

etik

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Pretty but that REALLY belongs in Burlington, not this location
I had the same thought as I was walking away. But take a look at the master plan render:

Screen Shot 2020-01-05 at 9.17.07 AM.png


It's going to be nicely hemmed in by a tall building on the right (where the cranes currently are, parcel I). There will also be a tall building peeking out from behind at this vantage point. So, thankfully, you won't see so much open sky once everything is done.

On the other hand, the left side is a big missed opportunity. The relatively low height and the buffer with the street means the left buildings won't bring with them a comfy sense of enclosure. That half of the picture will remain looking like Burlington.
 

Equilibria

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I had the same thought as I was walking away. But take a look at the master plan render:

View attachment 2414

It's going to be nicely hemmed in by a tall building on the right (where the cranes currently are, parcel I). There will also be a tall building peeking out from behind at this vantage point. So, thankfully, you won't see so much open sky once everything is done.

On the other hand, the left side is a big missed opportunity. The relatively low height and the buffer with the street means the left buildings won't bring with them a comfy sense of enclosure. That half of the picture will remain looking like Burlington.
You mean this Burlington?



None of this will look like Burlington.
 

stefal

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You mean this Burlington?

None of this will look like Burlington.
I don't think he was referring to that Burlington, rather, this Burlington (3rd Ave), which that park and low-rise structure and park could very well fit in.

1578241748490.png


Northpoint as a whole does feel a little less urban than what it could be. As etik pointed out, I would consider this neighborhood much more successful if the park felt like it was more enclosed. Perhaps anchoring it with a taller hotel/residential portion on Parcel R could go a long way. I'd agree the left side does appear to be lacking, especially the strangely large setback on Parcel S, which definitely reads more suburban than urban. The sidewalks in front of S are very wide for apparently no reason, and the streetwall could be more defined IMO, but seeing as its already completed, there's no hope in fixing that. Q2's landscraping design hurts too.
 

Equilibria

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I don't think he was referring to that Burlington, rather, this Burlington (3rd Ave), which that park and low-rise structure and park could very well fit in.
Yeah, but 3rd Ave and the District are both designed to look urban, so I'm not sure the argument works. Saying something in a new urban development looks like something that would fit in a new urbanist development a little farther from Downtown isn't a strong dis.
 

#bancars

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I had the same thought as I was walking away. But take a look at the master plan render:

View attachment 2414

It's going to be nicely hemmed in by a tall building on the right (where the cranes currently are, parcel I). There will also be a tall building peeking out from behind at this vantage point. So, thankfully, you won't see so much open sky once everything is done.

On the other hand, the left side is a big missed opportunity. The relatively low height and the buffer with the street means the left buildings won't bring with them a comfy sense of enclosure. That half of the picture will remain looking like Burlington.
Unfortunately it looks like we are still building no-protection paint bike infra, even with a brand new development and updated streetscape. Parking-protected or fully curb-separated should be the default now, not the exception...
 

stefal

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Unfortunately it looks like we are still building no-protection paint bike infra, even with a brand new development and updated streetscape. Parking-protected or fully curb-separated should be the default now, not the exception...
Unsure how closely we should be following the infrastructure in the renderings. Those usually just indicate "these things will exist here" and the architects and designers put in charge of making the rendering aren't going to pay as much attention to the bike lane details as they are the building details.
 

Gameguy326

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99% sure that the bike lanes will be protected since the city government has said all new street renovations with bikelanes will have protected bikelanes.
 

Equilibria

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99% sure that the bike lanes will be protected since the city government has said all new street renovations with bikelanes will have protected bikelanes.
Is the City building these, though? On a private development site I'm not sure that applies.
 

shmessy

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Is the City building these, though? On a private development site I'm not sure that applies.
It's the People's Republic of Cambridge. Those private developers will have to go along to get along.

.
 

HenryAlan

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Also, when was that render done? It was likely before Cambridge made the new commitment to protected lanes.
 

etik

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The last update was 2019-09-30, available here (and money screenshot below): https://www.cambridgema.gov/~/media/Files/CDD/ZoningDevel/SpecialPermits/sp179/sp179_design_q1_20190930.pdf

That shows that there will be protected bike lanes running along both sides of N. First St (a new road), and a bi-directional bike lane along Morgan Ave (technically this already exists along the common as the community path, but is used mostly for foot traffic.)

Unprotected bike lanes will remain on Morgan St and Water St, or the other two sides of Parcel I.

1578338436716.png
 

tocoto

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It would be nice to have a ped lane protected from bikes and microtranport.

too bad there is so little support for dedicated bus lanes. So many more people use them than bikes.
 

#bancars

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It would be nice to have a ped lane protected from bikes and microtranport.

too bad there is so little support for dedicated bus lanes. So many more people use them than bikes.
Little support for bus lanes? They are popping up everywhere across the inner core of Greater Boston... Boston, Watertown, Everett, Somerville, Cambridge, etc. The Governor and Secretary Pollack are highly in favor as well.

Also, bike modeshare in Cambridge as of 2017 was 8.2%, whereas transit modeshare in 2015 was 28.6%. Per the city of Cambridge's website, it seems like it is close to a 60-40 subway/bus split. So probably around ~10-14% are commuting by bus, by my very rough estimates. So while more people use buses currently, a not insignificant number of people in Cambridge use bikes regularly, and both Cambridge and Boston are looking to increase their bike modeshare exponentially, as it is cheaper and cleaner than other modes (aside from walking). More people won't bike without safe infrastructure.
 

ivyhedge

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It's the People's Republic of Cambridge. Those private developers will have to go along to get along.

.
That is not the case.

In meetings and discussions, DivCo has not committed to hard protecting the bike lanes, soft protecting them, or doing anything other than marking them ... badly (the ones marked last year are already trounced by construction vehicles despite being officially open for ~40 days). I have pushed this for years at CX, as have others in the development (the same way we have pushed for safer crosswalks with speed reducers here).

Sadly, there might be little interest in pedestrian or cyclist protection, despite noted incidents when children and dogs were almost hit with multiple witnesses during the Racing Days. Indeed, the firm's chosen security vehicles routinely park in the bike lanes on Morgan Avenue, forcing bikes to round them. One conversation we had via social media saw CX representatives affirm that painted lanes *are* protected. Totally tone deaf.

(Some of Cambridge's new bike lanes are nice, but keep in mind that Route 28's lanes are not protected.)
 

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