75 Northern Avenue
Encompassing more than 8 million square feet of space, Seaport Square is one of the most talked-about new developments to hit the Boston area in modern times. It began with an entitlement in late 2010, and construction started in early 2012. Slated for a 2020 completion date, this master planned project will incorporate a completely novel infrastructure, including new streets, buildings, plazas and parking spaces in addition to residential, commercial and retail spaces.
Even more exciting, the project is aiming for a Gold qualification under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) for Neighborhood Development rating scheme maintained by the U.S. Green Building Council. Regardless where you stand on modern urban development trends, it's difficult to find fault with Seaport Square's environmentally conscious approach.
Improving on Existing Space
The Seaport Square project will fill about 23 acres of land. When completed, this wide swath of development should connect various neighborhoods and landmarks, including Fan Pier, Pier 4, Fort Point Channel, the Financial District and Waterfront. The addition of roads and walking paths should also facilitate easy transit for locals and tourists who want to explore the many opportunities the area will soon offer.
Unlike other projects that erect new facilities and amenities at the expense of classic real estate and local culture, Seaport Square isn't going to evict entire neighborhoods or bulldoze green spaces. Instead, this innovative development will simply reclaim some over-sized parking zones that currently waste space and serve as major eye sores. Developers and industry insiders alike believe the project has the potential to inject fresh new life into the Seaport District without compromising its unique historic character or its modern flair.
The Seaport Square Layout
One notable aspect of this development plan is how free it is. A whopping 37 percent of the project is earmarked for various forms of open space, meaning residents and visitors won't have to settle for feeling cramped or claustrophobic no matter how popular the area becomes. For those who prefer a more natural feel, 25 percent of the development is green space, so you shouldn't have a problem finding a comfortably shady spot on sunny summer days.
Seaport Square Park
In addition to open street plans intended to make conditions as pedestrian-friendly as possible, the development includes a sizable green zone. This one-acre Seaport Square Park will certainly be a major improvement over the current asphalt lots, and with avenues of trees and a memorial honoring Massachusetts military heroes, it's certain to prove extremely popular.
One Seaport Square
Arguably the centerpiece of the entire project, this essential component of the Seaport Square master plan is a 1.5-million-square-foot development devoted to mixed uses. Its size makes it the most extensive Boston-based project of its kind in the last three decades, and it's currently one of the biggest urban redevelopment projects in the nation. With investors sinking $600 million into its development, the reclamation is on track for something great.
One Seaport Square features two main residential towers, the Benjamin and VIA. With a total of more than 800 apartments between them and 250,000 square feet of retail space distributed across their lower three levels, the towers will be developed and owned by Boston Global Investors and Berkshire Group. WS Development will oversee the retail development, but the three firms are likely to work in close cooperation with each other to create a uniform aesthetic.
The Benjamin and VIA both feature lease apartments designed to cater to flexible lifestyles, and their accommodations range in size all the way up to three bedrooms. VIA's 96 innovation units will meet the city's requirements for affordable rent; those who occupy these special dwellings also get to use collaboration spaces in addition to the outdoor and indoor facilities accessible to all. Heated pools, courtyards with city and sea views, lounges, gardens, water features and pet-friendly buildings are set to establish the Benjamin and VIA as hallmarks of modern high-class living that redefine what Bostonians come to expect from life.
At 20 and 22 stories tall, the Benjamin and VIA should fit right into the growing Boston skyline without overshadowing any local landmarks. Their combined 2.6 million square feet of space will also give residents plenty of room to stretch out and really enjoy themselves.
One Seaport Square's 250,000 feet of retail space will make it the densest retail zone in the Seaport District. Of course, the planners are working diligently to combat congestion and ensure things flow smoothly; WS Development's close ties with local businesses and retailers promise to keep the area from becoming overcrowded like so many others.
Chic Shops and Unique Entertainment
What kind of retail consumer will this complex cater to? In 2014, Bostonians were pleased to learn that the city's first new movie theater in more than ten years would open ten new screens alongside a lounge and restaurant here.
In addition to the new ShowPlace Icon Theater, a fully-stocked gym and a bowling alley complete with private rooms, the retail allocation is expected to provide storefront space for around 30 different clothiers, eateries and high-end shops. Best of all, these stores are scheduled for completion three years ahead of the rest of the project in 2017, so locals can get their shopping started early.
Hotels and Accommodations
The 20-building master plan for Seaport Square includes 850,000 square feet of space for hotels. While tenants had yet to be announced as of late 2014, the promise of space for 1,000 rooms should attract the biggest names in tourism and hospitality.
Office and Research Space
Another 1.3 million square feet of the Seaport Square project have been designated for offices and research space. As you might expect, startup companies and entrepreneurs aren't the only parties who are excited about such a prospect; the local government is also throwing its full support behind the idea.
The City of Boston has long involved itself in urban planning strategies that foster forward progress of the type exemplified by Silicon Valley. Tech companies looking to establish strong roots in Massachusetts know they're in good company in Boston's Seaport Innovation District; 40 percent of the new firms in the city share some kind of workspace here.
With tech companies, breweries, boutiques and more all within easy walking and driving distance, this is becoming a true mecca of contemporary urban reclamation. Of course, it doesn't hurt that the Boston Innovation Center is only a short distance away either: This nearby venue boasts more than 12,000 square feet of space, so it's perfect for new and established firms that want to make big changes in their fields.
Ease of Access
No development is complete without transportation infrastructure, and Seaport Square has the distinct advantage of being built right on top of some already-thriving routes. Residents and visitors will enjoy easy access to downtown, but they'll also be close to the Mass Pike, I-90 and I-93, so they needn't feel locked in when they want to explore beyond the city limits.
Commuters will love the fact that the Courthouse Silver Line MBTA station is also right on Seaport Boulevard, and the ability to reach Logan Airport or the Amtrak South Station in minutes ensures that no matter how far you want to travel, Seaport Square is a perfect starting point. Naturally, public transportation isn't for everyone, but the presence of multiple Zipcar locations and bike rental stations will make it easy to get around in whatever style suits you best. Cyclists can also look forward to a litany of bike racks and five new streets designed to accommodate pedal pushers as well as drivers.
What will happen to all the parking spaces that once dominated the area? Although they'll no longer represent glaring scars on the city landscape, they'll still be accessible in the form of underground garages. An estimated 6,000 spots should make it easy for people to live, work and play in the area, and the change will definitely contribute to the visual aesthetic.
Who's Behind Seaport Square?
This urban infill development is being completed under the direction of Boston Global Investors, Berkshire Group and WS Development. These are all Boston-based companies with ample real estate experience, so they ought to bring a uniquely local perspective to the table.
The three Boston developers are also joined by Morgan Stanley's real estate arm. One Seaport Square was designed by Elkus Manfredi Architects, which has completed numerous well-received buildings in Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago and other cities.
Should You Get Excited About Seaport Square?
This is only the beginning of what Seaport Square might become; plans are in the works for condos, galleries, cultural meeting places, exhibits, education venues and even a center for the performing arts. Supermarkets, pharmacies and other amenities are certain to follow, and the area is bound to acquire a life of its own as new residents decide how they want their little part of the city to take shape.
Even if you decide this high-end neighborhood doesn't quite suit your residential tastes, remember that it's got quite a few other things going for it. The Seaport District is about to become much better for shopping and entertainment, meaning that local real estate is sure to receive a welcome boost. Regardless whether you're a property investor, a business owner looking to expand or simply a renter in search of a change, this is an opportunity you can't ignore.
In coming years, this project will be one of the apartment complexes to watch out for. After receiving approval in 2017, this luxury project is expected to be completed in 2020. The master-planned project will take up 23 acres of land and include 8.6 million square feet.
In total, this project will include 20 blocks of business, retail and residential space. It will create five new streets that have more than 20 buildings. Four gathering areas will be designed for public use. In total, the project is expected to include 2.6 million square feet of residential units. This will include 3,000 apartment units. Plus, there will be an additional 1.3 million square feet of retail space and 1.3 million square feet of office space. Beneath the entire complex, there will be .2 million square feet of parking for up to 6,000 cars.
Other than residential space, the property will include 250,000 square feet of area devoted to civic, cultural and educational topics. Plus, there will be up to 1,000 hotel rooms in the complex. To make sure that the area retains a natural ambiance, the developers are devoting 40 percent of it to just open space. This will include a tree-filled Seaport Common that will include one-acre of green space. The Sea Green will encompass a play area, a basketball court and a dog park. Because of its focus on green building, the project is eligible for the LEED Silver certification.
A Growing Development
From the property, tenants can enjoy having easy access to downtown Boston and the Courthouse Silver Line Station. Joggers can also enjoy being close to the Rose F. Kennedy Greenway. The architecture for the project was created by Elkus Manfredi Architects. When this project is completed, it will be the largest mixed-use development project in the city for nearly 30 years.
A Greener Lifestyle
The first stage of the project should be completed in 2018. This will include two residential towers. These towers will include 250,000 square feet of retail space as well as 832 apartments. The retail space will be on the first three floors, and the residential space will be on the upper levels.
The units at the complex will include 354 units at the Benjamin building and 458 units at the Via building. Each building has a distinctive architecture and ambiance. In total, 96 of the units will be designated as affordable units.
At the VIA, tenants will find 96 innovation units. These innovation units will consist of studio and one-bedroom apartments. From these units, tenants can readily access collaboration space. Both of the buildings will include a range of studio, one-bedroom, two-bedroom and three-bedroom layouts.
To make a community-like experience, the complexes are served by shared indoor and outdoor spaces. At the Benjamin, part of this experience will consist of two courtyard spaces. To ensure that there will be plenty of green space, an outdoor terrace space was created that includes more than one acre of open land.
Boasting of high-end amenities, this project is designed to be a place where tenants can live, work, play and shop around the clock. It offers world-class research and office space as well as a range of retail offerings. From the units, tenants can enjoy having direct access to public transportation and a short walk to the Financial District.
In keeping with its LEED Silver certification, this complex was created with energy-efficient designs. This includes Energy Star appliances, energy-efficient water heaters and green building materials. Right now, the management team is working to change the project so that it also qualifies for the LEED Gold certification.
At the property, tenants will find that 37 percent of the land consists of open spaces. A total of 25 percent of the property is designated as green space.
Life at the Property
Tenants at the property can enjoy having a number of exceptional amenities. Depending on the building, the exact features and architecture can vary. No matter where tenants live, they can enjoy having luxury, high-end features. These units are outfitted with modern fixtures and energy-efficient appliances.
Residents can also enjoy having a pet-friendly rental policy. Within the development, residents will find a dog park and plenty of open spaces for taking their dog on a walk. These green spaces are also great for younger residents who need some room to burn off steam.
Finding parking in Boston is not always easy. To make life a little more convenient, the management team has ensured that 6,000 parking spaces are included as a part of the development. These parking spaces are built underground to maximize space and provide a controlled-access area for the vehicles.
From luxurious features to innovation spaces, these units offer a collaborative living environment. Tenants can enjoy living in a community-like atmosphere in a development where they can shop, live, work and play. No matter what residents are looking for, they can find it within this unique rental complex.
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