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Mixed-used, 184-unit building pitched for Mt. Vernon Street in Dorchester

Posted by Patrick Rosso  April 24, 2013 05:15 PM

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(Image courtesy Corcoran Johnson Companies)

A rendering of the proposed structure showing the portion along Mt. Vernon Street that faces the JFK/UMass MBTA Station.

Developers are getting closer to finalizing plans for a six-story, $60-million, 184-unit apartment building proposed for the entrance of Mt. Vernon Street in Dorchester.

The project, dubbed “University Place,” will be developed and managed by Corcoran Jennison Companies, a development and property management firm located in the office building adjacent to the site.

The plans propose building the structure on the parking lot in front of the company’s building located at the Bay Side Expo Center.

In addition to the 184 units, which will include 67 studios, 73 one-bedrooms, and 44 two-bedrooms, the project will also include 76 underground parking spaces for residents, 120 at-grade multi-use parking spaces, and 17 street parking spaces for shoppers.

The units, excluding the 24 affordable units, are expected to be rented at market rate, with a one-bedroom estimated to go for between $2,000-$2,200 a month.

“We want to add things to the community that are missing,” said Sean McReynolds, a project director for Corcoran Jennison, who described the units as “workforce housing.”

Plans show the top five floors of the building will be dedicated to residential units, with 10,000-square-feet on the ground-floor reserved for retail. The building will also house a fitness center, conference space, resident lounge, and ample bike storage space, said McReynolds.

Developers have proposed constructing the building along the property line on Mt. Vernon Street, with the retail space facing the JFK/UMass MBTA Station and the street to help generate traffic in the area.


(Image courtesy Corcoran Johnson Companies)

A rendering, looking toward Day Boulevard and South Boston, of the proposed structure with the existing Corcoran Johnson Companies' building to the rear.

“We want to create a pedestrian friendly ground-floor retail space,” said McReynolds, who added that the group will look to fill the retail space with local and small businesses.

In addition to the building, which developers hope to have LEED certified Silver, the plans propose constructing an estimated 25,000-square-foot courtyard between the new structure and Corcoran Jennison’s existing office building. The courtyard would include new tree plantings as well as passive green space and grass spaces.

Residential balconies and a top-floor roof terrace are also included in the design.

McReynolds added that company is dedicated to using union labor on the project.

Of the few area residents in attendance, some were concerned that the building could turn into dorms for nearby UMass Boston, but McReynolds said Corcoran Jennison won’t be going anywhere and will manage the building.

“We’re not here to develop, flip, and leave,” said McReynolds, “We’re here for the long haul.”

Although timelines are not exact, McReynolds said the group would like to break ground in the winter of 2013-2014 and have the project completed in 16-18 months.

The project is just in the beginning phase of the Boston Redevelopment Authority's Article 80 community review process. Because the project is in a planned development area the public comment period will last for 45-days.

Comments must be written, faxed, or emailed to the BRA by May 24.


Fax: (617) 742-7783

Mail: John Fitzgerald
Boston Redevelopment Authority
One City Hall Square, 9th Floor, Boston, Ma 02201


(Image courtesy Corcoran Johnson Companies)

A rendering of the proposed courtyard.

Email Patrick D. Rosso, Follow him @PDRosso, or friend him on Facebook.

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