PETITION TO OPPOSE CURRENT 212 STUART STREET PLAN
We, the undersigned, residents of Bay Village, CITIZENS of Boston, and neighbors to the proposed development located at 212-222 STUART STREET & 17-19 SHAWMUT STREET BOSTON 02116 (the “Property”), hereby notify the Boston Planning and Development Authority (BPDA); our City and State representatives; our mayor, Martin Walsh; and both the Planning Committee and Executive Committee of the Bay Village Neighborhood Association that we are unequivocally opposed to the development proposed by Transom Real Estate, LLC, and/or the owner of the Property. Specifically, we are opposed to this new construction on the basis of a) violations of Boston City Zoning; b) violations of General Laws of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts; and c) anticipated injury to the Bay Village Neighborhood and to the public welfare if this construction were to go forward as proposed:
- All zoning approvals from the City (“BRA”) regarding previous proposals for this site (in 2006 and in 2008) have expired and should be considered null and void in relation to this project.
- The project is located within the BAY VILLAGE HISTORIC DISTRICT, established under MA General Laws Ch. 40C (Historic Districts Act of 1960), which prohibits new construction which would “materially impair the historical, social, cultural, architectural, or aesthetic significance of the district.” Transom’s proposed building will denigrate the architectural integrity and historic character of the neighborhood as established by the Massachusetts legislature due to the building’s excessive height (199 feet) which is out of scale and character with this historic residential neighborhood and will disrupt the rhythm of the north to south street facades extending from the buildings on Statler Park to the 35-65 foot facades along Church Street.
- Building Height as proposed violates zoning height restrictions in the Historic District on all 4 parcels by between 469% (164 feet), at most, and 206% (134 feet), at least. Proposed project height is unacceptable and incompatible with existing low-rise buildings in the vicinity and will destroy the intimate character of the neighborhood. Especially, the building would physically isolate and limit the light and air surrounding properties on tiny Shawmut Street.
- Off-Street Parking Insufficient. The proposal states long-term parking leases for “up to 50 spaces” in the nearby Revere Hotel garage, for a building of 133 units. There is insufficient parking in the area to accommodate the extra cars anticipated and the overcrowding will harm the neighborhood especially during snowstorms when everyone has to move off-street.
- Floor Area Ratio (FAR) is excessive: 1300% more than FAR zoning for this parcel. See Article 63-9 Density Limitation Regulations (Bay Village Neighborhood District). See also Map 1N, Zoning Districts of City of Boston.
- Light pollution generated by the project will flood the neighborhood and has not been studied or addressed by the developer.
- Blue sky will be blocked out of Bay Village. Developer’s claims that the building will only be seen by 29% of the Village are inaccurate, due to a faulty methodology. This will be a looming building seen by everyone facing north from sidewalks and windows facing north.
- SHADOW CRITERIA. Developer has yet to provide complete data proving that proposed building satisfies Article 38-16 (Environmental Impact Standards) of the Midtown Cultural District code, requiring that no project shall cast shadows on any single Shadow Impact Area depicted on Map 1A of the Zoning Code for more than 2 hours from 8 am thru 2:30 pm on any day from March 21 thru October 21. Statler Park is a Shadow Impact Area.
- WIND CRITERIA. Developer’s own studies already show that the 199-foot structure would increase wind in the vicinity, at times over 14.1 miles per hour during normal conditions, likely in excess of the Environmental Impact Standards established in Section 38-16 of the code for the Midtown Cultural District (“Open Plazas and Park Areas”). Wind in the vicinity of South Cove Apartments, in Statler Park, and within Bay Village itself will degrade the quality of life of Bay Village residents. See attached Wind Analysis.
- SOUTH COVE ELDERLY APARTMENTS. During construction the project will severely limit access for the elderly residents within the Church St. Plaza as well as along Shawmut St. Once completed, per the Wind Analysis, the area outside the entrance (which includes the residents’ public space) will be negatively affected 100% of the time.
- There are no conditions especially affecting this parcel which do not affect the zoning district in general.
In conclusion, the proposed new structure will cause substantial hardship to the community, cause detriment to the public good, and will nullify and substantially deviate from the intent and purpose of the zoning ordinance and the historic fabric of the neighborhood. We encourage and respectfully request that the the Zoning and Planning Committee and the Executive Committee of the Bay Village Neighborhood Association takes steps to stop this project as proposed by voting to oppose. Please add this document to the public record at each meeting regarding this project.