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Developers Pitch New Allston Yards Project Proposal at BPDA Meetings

Developers proposed a new Allston housing project at meetings held by the Boston Planning and Development Agency this month.
Developers proposed a new Allston housing project at meetings held by the Boston Planning and Development Agency this month. By Zing Gee
By Yusuf S. Mian and Charlotte P. Ritz-Jack, Crimson Staff Writers

The developers behind a proposed project at 52 Everett St. in Allston pitched their plans to build a new housing project at meetings hosted by the Boston Planning and Development Agency over the last two weeks.

The proposed development would be a part of the Allston Yards project, which will create a new neighborhood center in Allston. The project plans to create new housing, offices, and spaces for restaurants and businesses.

The 52 Everett St. development would be located alongside four buildings approved by the BPDA in December 2019 at 60 Everett St. that are still under construction. In March, the BPDA approved a different building project for Allston Yards located at 90 Braintree St. that will include rental residential units and artist live-work spaces.

The 52 Everett St. project, which is set to begin next spring, will take roughly 24 months to complete.

David P. Manfredi, an architect for the project, lauded the sustainability of the proposed building.

“We have a very highly insulated and very sustainable building envelope designed for reduced energy consumption,” Manfredi said.

Still, some residents said they were concerned about the proposal. Brighton resident Eileen K. Houben said she was concerned about the project’s impact on the electrical grid.

“We have lots of blackouts, at least in my neighborhood,” Houben said. “I was wondering what percentage of your power is going to be generated by you and not dependent on the grid.”

Other residents expressed support for the project and the role it would play in developing the Allston-Brighton area.

Owen Palmatier, a Brighton resident, voiced support for the project.

“I think this is a good project for us. I’m a Brighton resident and I’m also a Local 12 member,” he said, referring to the Boston plumbers and gasfitters union. “I think this would be good for the community — it would bring in a lot of money to the community.”

Local resident Paula Alexander lauded the project’s design.

“It’s an attractive looking building, I think, compared to some of the others in the area,” she said.

Housing prices in Allston have soared in recent years. The average home went up 43 percent between 2011 and 2019, and the median rent went up 36 percent, according to data compiled by the Boston Department of Neighborhood Development.

At the meeting, the developers discussed their efforts to promote affordable housing in the neighborhood.

“We’re accelerating our Allston Yards affordable commitment and that brings forward more affordable homeownership units, which is something that the neighborhood has been really vocal about and it’s important to the community,” said Mark Jackson, a project manager from New England Development, one of the development agencies behind the proposal.

The public comment period for the project will continue through May 6.

—Staff writer Yusuf S. Mian can be reached at yusuf.mian@thecrimson.com. Follow him on Twitter @yusuf_mian2.

—Staff writer Charlotte P. Ritz-Jack can be reached at charlotte.ritz-jack@thecrimson.com. Follow her on Twitter @Charritzjack.

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