Jackson Square Phase III | Jamaica Plain

FK4

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So I drove by this today and had no idea what it was. I was totally unaware that this had been approved and was u/c - I thought nothing for this next Jackson phase has been finalized at all - it’s two buildings and will be a huuuge victory for this area. Still not sure what the electrical substation plan is - i think in the renders it’s just hidden with greenery. Still, this is massive. Using phone so don’t have time to post pics but there’s a few on bldup and others kicking around the internets -

http://www.bldup.com/projects/jackson-square-site-iii-phase-3

Edit - Also, the plans show the Amory Street extension. Last I heard, which was a couple years ago, there was a private property owner who was preventing this. Not sure if that will be part of this project or not.
 
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FK4

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Yes, but this is major.

I dont know how to extract pdf images but here's the plans.






Edit - on page 3, there's an arrow pointing toward the tracks that says "access to MBTA". I'm a little skeptical this is legit and is probably just conjecture, but wonder if anyone knows anything about the possibility of opening up another headhouse on the other side of Centre.
 

bigeman312

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Might they be planning on turning this into a public headhouse:

Here

That would be amazing for commuters who live south of Centre. Currently, there are TONS of commuters who have to needlessly cross back-and-forth over Centre.
 

FK4

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I know there are stairs there, but given all the blood sweat and tears that went into the overall master redevelopment of Jackson Square, I doubt they had much capital left over to go negotiate with the MBTA on incorporating a new headhouse into the project. That, and I think we would have heard about this if it was actually a plan.
 

Brad Plaid

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A serious response to a housing shortage would have been a cluster of 10-12 story towers with many hundreds of units. An unserious response, this one, is garden-style suburban-grade density with too much open space and 2(!) surface parking lots Right across from an Orange Line station.
 

FK4

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I’d also like to see more height. However, those involved in the process will tell you this is the best that could be done (?wheres elemenoh). This isn’t a privately funded development.

This is still a huge win. It takes an enormous blighted corner, one of the last around here, and fills it in with a good project with a significant amount of affordable housing. Instead of seeing multiple vacant lots when approaching Centre St, you will see housing. That’s enough for me.
 

elemenoh

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There's no new headhouse in this plan as far as I know. There is an existing MBTA repair facility that in the original master plan was going to be screened with small shops facing Centre St. The electrical substation at the corner is also expected to stay, since Eversource continues to refuse to move it or enclose it in a new building.

I was part of the planning group way at the beginning of the project (over a decade ago) and got laughed at when I suggested buildings as tall as Bromley-Heath (which are at least 8 stories).

Folks were genuinely concerned about gentrification and displacement, and all of their concerns have played out into the crazy real estate market in the neighborhood now.
 

odurandina

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There's no new headhouse in this plan as far as I know. There is an existing MBTA repair facility that in the original master plan was going to be screened with small shops facing Centre St.
Pardon, i'm not very familiar with this area. How large? Where would they have put that?
Are you saying the facility already exists?
 

FK4

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^Thanks elemenoh. I remember seeing that plan for the little shops. That seems like something unlikely to happen… I always wish to see a replication of the little “taxpayer“ shops that give an area a much more local feel than the usual corporate-seeming spots in newer buildings, but my guess is it’s very hard to build those now and make a profit.

Edit - odura, it’s a small maintenance structure and you can see it at the corner of Lamartine and Centre.
 

HenryAlan

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I've always wondered about that building. What kind of maintenance is done there? It can't possibly be related to train cars, as it is too small.
 

DigitalSciGuy

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Late to the thread...

I was in public meetings for this up until approval since I live across the street from this (225 Centre) and don't recall anything in the MBTA area across the head house that would be touched as part of this project. In a parallel universe where the MBTA's chief of property development previously from the Asian CDC had actually stayed, that might have been well into bidding for proposals with developers...

RJV Construction equipment showed up on site in September and started utility tie-in work in the middle of Centre Street. Somewhere in November, they paved over Centre Street and then closed off part of Amory Street and the right turn lane off Centre Street to finish off utility work. The wonderful news is that my windows and building insulation have been great at damping the construction work!

It wasn't clear to me whether they were moving forward with the whole project or just the 25 Amory affordable housing component.

Speaking of retail... my building can't seem to keep any. Now the only three tenants are all office uses that do nothing to activate the street, let alone make my building look lively. I almost want to blame the retail property manager (different from the residential property manager, Peabody Properties), but I can't help but wonder if it's gonna take this development to finish and get leased before anymore non-office tenants consider leasing here.
 

stick n move

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Yes, but this is major.

I dont know how to extract pdf images but here's the plans.





Edit - on page 3, there's an arrow pointing toward the tracks that says "access to MBTA". I'm a little skeptical this is legit and is probably just conjecture, but wonder if anyone knows anything about the possibility of opening up another headhouse on the other side of Centre.

You print screen on windows or cmd shift 4 on mac then host.
 

Paletexan

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Was riding a bluebike (please pardon the terrible pics) along SW corridor to Angel Medical Center and came across a couple construction projects. I believe the first is Jackson Square and second is around the corner in Heath Square.

This part of the SW corridor with access to greenway and orange line seems to have potential to have the urban feel of Beacon St going outbound towards Coolidge Corner in Brookline.

51EA5B02-E3BF-4403-9240-32B4122A193F by S S, on Flickr

FEE51FE1-C0CB-43CB-86A8-DA269E495CA2 by S S, on Flickr
 

estyle

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Late to the thread...

I was in public meetings for this up until approval since I live across the street from this (225 Centre) and don't recall anything in the MBTA area across the head house that would be touched as part of this project. In a parallel universe where the MBTA's chief of property development previously from the Asian CDC had actually stayed, that might have been well into bidding for proposals with developers...

RJV Construction equipment showed up on site in September and started utility tie-in work in the middle of Centre Street. Somewhere in November, they paved over Centre Street and then closed off part of Amory Street and the right turn lane off Centre Street to finish off utility work. The wonderful news is that my windows and building insulation have been great at damping the construction work!

It wasn't clear to me whether they were moving forward with the whole project or just the 25 Amory affordable housing component.

Speaking of retail... my building can't seem to keep any. Now the only three tenants are all office uses that do nothing to activate the street, let alone make my building look lively. I almost want to blame the retail property manager (different from the residential property manager, Peabody Properties), but I can't help but wonder if it's gonna take this development to finish and get leased before anymore non-office tenants consider leasing here.
I'm fascinated that 225 Centre can't keep retail. It seems like a great spot for it and the other newish building a block away on the other side of center has a lot. It may be property manager but I wonder if getting some matching retail on the other side of Centre wouldn't help.
 

FK4

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I'm fascinated that 225 Centre can't keep retail. It seems like a great spot for it and the other newish building a block away on the other side of center has a lot. It may be property manager but I wonder if getting some matching retail on the other side of Centre wouldn't help.
I would say activating the other side of the street is absolutely critical. Think of where this is… 15 years ago, there was absolutely nothing here, and as far as this corner goes the only thing that has changed is there is one large residential building here. But it remains a very windswept and isolated place — if you live in JP, you’ll gravitate further outbound on Centre where it’s denser, and if you’re in Roxbury, you’ll gravitate toward the commercial spots on Washington or end of MLK. That’s why the Il Panino is successful - it’s enclosed by buildings and attached to a commercial strip (and has a beer license).

I also think these spots tend to not be sized appropriately. Commercial rents are insane and yet a lot of these public grant money developments seem to continue including weirdly large floor plans that end up being too expensive for anyone. Take the Bolling Building in Roxbury - yeah, it’s nice to think that some restauranteur is going to open a giant restaurant right in the heart of Dudley Square, but they should’ve been more realistic and realized that, at least for now, that’s a total pipe dream… And sized the space accordingly.
 

vanshnookenraggen

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This is what happens when you build transit away from where people want to be. Ironically Jackson Sq suffers from not having a proposed urban renewal project built. MLK Jr Blvd was supposed to have been extended to Centre St to create a sorta crosstown artery. Had this been done you would have seen more traffic for Jackson Sq and more reason for people to go there. If you look at Columbus Ave there is no reason why anyone would be walking along it. Jackson Sq has a ton of potential but it is more like the Seaport in that it will take a long time to get a critical mass there.
 

curcuas

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Another issue is zoning along Columbus Ave. It's incredibly wide from Ruggles to Jackson Square with precious little activation. The enormous parking lot for Roxbury CC is a mess....the entire east side of Columbus should be rezoned for relatively high density, which would both activate Jackson Sq more and draw people down from Highland Park...
 

elemenoh

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When they were justifying the retail, all of the studies showed the 70,000 daily commuters who drive by along Columbus Ave. as potential customers. Obviously that hasn't worked out. The rents are also high since it's new construction, so local shops haven't relocated there. Retail would be more successful along the Centre St. side of the Bromley-Heath project since thousands of people actually *walk* by there every day to & from the T. (There was a proposal decades ago to replace the lower floors of Bromley-Heath with a retail podium facing Centre, but that never went anywhere.)
 

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