READ ABOUT FORT POINT'S HISTORIC PAST HERE!

READ SAND'S VISION FOR BOSTON'S WATERFRONT HERE!

 
   
 
 

2008 LATE-BREAKING SAND NEWS

BRA, abandoning Seaport Master Plan and recently awarded variances,
rewards Lincoln with $5M+ rooftop addition for office project

Agency to approve new variance from existing zoning for new construction on Summer St projects
Residential Units required: 0
Retail requirement: 0 s.f. (developer option, first floor may be office lobby)

BRA approvals pressing Seaport District office space development to 90%
Lucrative approvals rewarded without concurrent development requirements for mixed-use commercial, civic, cultural, residential
Greater Seaport District residential units under construction: 34
Fort Point residential units under construction: 0
Fort Point recreational parkspace under construction: 0 square feet
Fort Point civic space under construction: 0 square feet
Fort Point cultural facilities under construction: 0 square feet

Mayor Calls for More Housing At Fort Point Office Development
Lincoln Property cites lack of guidance from BRA for ongoing impasse
5/26/08

 

Lincoln Project at impasse at BRA, community wrestles with project outcome
Former approved plans for 87 residential units and 4 artist live/work units abandoned

"Drop it boys -- we've got BRA approval for another office project!"

"Blighted Neighborhood" tax breaks tapped by JPMorgan Chase to find prime Waterfront digs
Boston Seaport to be renamed: "The Only Official Tax-free Backwater of the Financial District"
4/30/08

Skepticism, impatience mounting on Seaport Square phasing, after 10+ years of BRA "Master Planning"
Developer seeks office and hotel approvals based on someday promise of 2,400+ housing units
4/21/08

SAND files comment on Archon/Goldman Triple-Building Office Space Proposal
First 100-Acres Project: Flipped from residential "vision" to Office Space due to "market conditions"
4/18/08

Lincoln Properties Notice of Project Change under microscope at BRA
Developer seeks BRA-approved Summer Street rooftop addition: 18,800 SF of new FAR
Developer nixes BRA-approved project: 87 residential condos and 4 artist live/work units
Developer hopscotches for April BRA Board approval: 140,000 square feet of office space
Update: Developer offers treasured cultural organization 5-year lease, (2) lease extensions + buildout

PUBLIC COMMENT LETTERS: Residential live/work per 2006 PNF or NO ROOFTOP ADDITION
4/15/08

SAND files comment on 316-322 Summer Street Office Space Proposal
Archon/Goldman flipped building as office space after pursuing Residential variance
4/10/08

Archon website: A "valued added play" for "rolling below market tenants", upzoning, flipping
4/1/08

Missing: Archon/Goldman's $2 million neighorhood contribution
3/31/08

BREAKING NEWS
Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino
and newly appointed BRA Director John Palmieri intervene,
responding to Fort Point community's plea for attention to Master Plan
Planning agency to revisit office space proposals and renew focus on fulfillment of "Neighborhood vision"
3/25/08

10 years and counting: Fort Point Developers privately gaming BRA Master Plans
5 more buildings flipped for 100% office space after capitalizing on BRA variances
Agency selling variances, failing to require one square foot of housing, civic space, parks
3/15/08

Berkeley Investments announces plan to preserve and renovate 368 Congress St. Boiler Room
Developer responds to dialog with Boston Landmarks Commission and Fort Point community
2/13/08

Boston Civic Design Commision (BCDC) hails Archon's Melcher Street Plan:

So says the Boston Civic Design Commission
2/9/08

News from the bizarre world of Boston Seaport planning:
Ex-BRA director lobbying for FBI high security office complex in the heart of evolving residential district
1/16/08

2007

Fort Point property owners begin cherry-picking BRA variances from area Master Plans
Residential projects, Open Space and Civic Plans forgotten or postponed to nebulous "Phase Two"
You Decide: Is Fan Pier architecture worthy of a Pritzker Prize?
10/23/07

MASSPORT SHOCKER: Waterfront parcel to be developed for port activity
Agency takes a breather from "Houston on the Harbor" hotel, office, condo, mall projects
9/17/07

Ex-BRA Director's Scheme: Develop high-security FBI tower in historic neighborhood
As Fort Point plan flaps in the breeze, windsocks and trial balloons rise in the August air
8/21/07

New Fan Pier proposal: Private day care center on 2nd floor is a "Facility of Public Accommodation"
Boston Harbor Association comment letter highlights deficit of civic planning at water's edge
8/17/07

Seaport parking lots overparking cars for $$$ despite South Boston Parking Freeze
6/28/07

UPDATE 8/9/07: BRA Responds
Why is the BRA failing to lock in Public Access Provisions of its own Master Plans?
Fort Point property owner reclaiming right to privatize street in BRA-approved 100-Acre Plan
6/26/07

With a windsock on every building, Fort Point plan flaps in the breeze
Residential market down? No problem, we're zoned for Office or Hotel or Whatever!
6/8/07

Latest catch-as-catch-can Seaport trial balloon: Private school
Ten years of Waterfront variances, tax abatements and parking lot revenues for property owners,
Fort Point community vexed by lack of public amenities, schools, civic, fire, police in Seaport plan

6/8/07

Boston's Prime Waterfront Property: Urban neighborhood or high-security gulag?
FBI eyeing move to Fan Pier; institutional office space would trump residential requirements
5/22/07

SAND joins with Chinatown to preserve historic Dainty Dot building
4/15/07

Fort Point added to Groundwater Conservation Overlay District, with some modification
Capture and recharge not required of new projects; No detrimental impact to existing groundwater allowed
3/12/07

Fort Point 19th century wharf buildings placed on 10 Most Endangered list
Non-profit org. Preservation Mass. calls for immediate action to protect district
2/2/07

Jim Kelly, a friend of the Fort Point neighborhood and arts community, passes.
Boston City Councilor James M. Kelly, 1940-2007
January 9, 2007

Need a $2000 liquor license in Boston? No problem, just don't tell the neighbors!

Property owners, abutters and residents sidelined, despite claims of Boston Licensing Board
1/4/07

Fort Point Landmark District Study Committee begins work; public meeting scheduled
One-year process anticipated by committee to complete research, discussion, report
01/03/2007

2006

In Fort Point, a district of over 80% office space, BRA incentivizes... more office space
Available space for residential development dwindling; critical mass seen unlikely
Boston City Council unanimously approves Fort Point historic landmark study committee
Mayor Menino, Councilors Kelly and Flaherty approve appointments
SAND files comment on Beacon Capital Partners' Channel Center amendment
SAND files comment on Congress Street Hotel
10/12/06


BRA purging numerous historic wharf buildings from "existing" property maps
Five historic brick-and-beam Boston Wharf Co. buildings enter twilight zone
8/22/06


Despite Fort Point plea, BRA purging the term "historic" from City maps, plans
5-year effort to secure Boston Local Landmark historic designation seen languishing
BRA double-counting South Boston affordable housing unit projections
BRA improperly suggests in public document that South Boston is beneficiary of "Community Benefits"
8/11/06


Fort Point 100 Acres Master Plan approved, marred by last-minute BRA reversals
Five years and 100 meetings later, BRA inserts new provisions into Final Draft including:

1.
2.
3.
4.

Residential projections lowered far below critical mass and disproportionate to office space
100 Acre Flip/Flop: Two-story additions on historic buildings suddenly supported
BRA quietly renames "Fort Point Historic North" subdistrict as "Fort Point North"
BRA adopts P&G/Gillette "Phase One" scheme: new streets without concurrent public realm

8/11/06


SAND files comment regarding redevelopment of Archon residential condo
5/29/06


Fort Point excluded from BRA Groundwater Conservation District Plan
City plan to include Chinatown, Back Bay, Beacon Hill, South End
5/23/06


State Environmental Agency disbands waterfront access working group
Real estate organization sought common ground, terminated participation two months later
Coincidence? Legislators seeking to gut key waterfront public access provision
3/30/06


Fort Point public realm plan to hilight access to Channel
BRA modifies 100-Acre plan to include signature recreational park
3/28/06


Murdoch to purchase and develop McCourt parcels
2/22/06


Double-dipping at the public trough — parcel owners turn from zoning to subsidy
Fort Point parking lots seen as placeholder while lucrative sweeteners flow
2/17/06


Fort Point National Historic District excluded from groundwater program
Historic buildings, past and current, irreparably damaged by declining water table
2/15/06


McCourt reportedly selling Seaport site
1/14/06

2005

Developers propose viable maritime use for Seaport; Massport follows
11/3/05


BRA 100-Acres draft excludes Fort Point subdistrict from historic identification
Area formerly named "Fort Point South Historic Subdistrict" renamed "100-Acres" in new BRA plan
9/23/05


Is the South Boston Waterfront on the map for BRA groundwater plans?
Not yet, according to Citywide Groundwater Emergency Taskforce
9/21/05


Summer 2005 100-Acres Meetings concluded, no change to June 2005 DRAFT
Fort Point Advisory Committee strongly recommends redraft with major changes
9/16/05


Fan Pier purchased by local partners
8/18/05


Plans drafted privately, BRA and Fort Point’s large-property owners ready for State approval
BRA PLAN: FORT POINT CHANNEL HIDDEN BY WALL OF 100-200' OFFICE BUILDINGS ALONG 'A' STREET
BRA PLAN: FORT POINT DISTRICT's ONLY RECREATIONAL PARK: 1/2 MILE FROM SUMMER ST.

BRA PLAN: HEIGHT AND DENSITY INTRODUCED TO PUBLIC IN SUMMER '05, NO CHANGES POSSIBLE
Updated 8/3/05



After one year of private negotiations, BRA to host summer series of public meetings
Cement dry on 100 Acres Plan — no change expected through public process
7/22/05
BRA publishes DRAFT of Fort Point 100 Acres Plan
7/8/05
 


Russia Wharf plan and amenities, years in planning and approvals, changed overnight
Market forces, not planning or zoning, determining fate of Waterfront projects and public accommodation

Public Market opens on Old Northern Avenue Bridge
7/8/05


Waterfront developers embroiled in lawsuit over zoning variances
Russia Wharf project stalled by abutter suit over zoning process and rights
Boston Globe weighs in on stalled Fan Pier project
7/7/05


Boston Mayor threatens Fan Pier permits due to developer inaction
Supreme Court backs eminent domain land taking for private development
6/25/05


Turning community talk into action, Midway Artist Studios opens for business
Court Square Press developer weighs in on design ideals for residential projects
6/22/05


Goldman Sachs Frontrunner in Chase for Boston Wharf Holdings
BWCo. Pres. Bob Kenney, longtime friend of Fort Point arts community, signals farewell
Water shuttle to offer connection between Boston’s waterfront neighborhoods
6/20/05


Dozens of public realm planning meetings hosted by BRA —Result: No Change
Private plans roil Fort Point community — scale and tax breaks trump master plan
Community ideals for public realm absent from plan, residential development seen lagging
Why public process matters: SAND takes a look at recent BRA approval
Pedestrians now face long city block with no “doors on the street” — Jane Jacobs be damned
What are SAND’s stated objectives for the Fort Point 100-acres?
Community members, largely pro-development, consistently advocate for mixed-use neighborhood
6/15/05


Fort Point community views BRA plan for land use, height and density
No change seen to Open Space plan since 2002; BRA to move forward with private agreement
5/31/05


Lennar revisiting Fan Pier -- and Fan Pier plan -- for possible purchase.
5/18/05


Fort Point development tax incentives under consideration
5/8/05


BRA and large property owners nearing private agreement on
Fort Point land use, height and density Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)
Agreement to mark culmination one year of private meetings at City Hall
Boston Wharf Co. sells entire remaining porfolio
4/25/05


Boston Wharf Co. sells 3 additional Fort Point properties
2/17/05


SAND files comment on Pier 4 Final Environmental Impact Report (FEIR)
2/03/05


Housing shortfall on Boston Waterfront now under 50% of BRA’s published goal
Full build: 70% of Waterfront employees would be forced to look for housing in other neighborhoods
1/31/05


Waterfront-based Gillette Co. to be acquired by Cincinnatti-based P&G
Pier 4 plans moving forward through State approvals
1/28/05


BRA, developers solidify Fort Point height, density and land use plans in private process
Six month series of private meetings at City Hall trump public discussion
1/08/05

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

3/99 BRA Seaport Public Realm Plan Completed

1998

November 1997

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