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Millennium Place and the Rise of Gated Communities Downtown

There is a certain irony about the optimism surrounding the development of both Millennium Tower and Millennium Place by, um, Millennium Partners. Both towers, particularly the former (which we've aptly called "the mother of all recent Boston towers"), have been touted as essential to the transformation of Downtown Crossing and its environs into a 24/7 area hopping with residents out and about at local shops and restaurants, the streets not deserted after 7 p.m. At the same time, though, both buildings will be the sorts that residents within do not really need to leave. And we don't mean that in the sense that there's a gym inside or even a rooftop pool outside.

We mean they literally never have to engage with the surrounding neighborhood if they don't want to. It's a potentially seismic change in Boston. Take this release we got on Friday re: Millennium Place, which is starting to get under way toward a fall 2013 opening:

Millennium Place will offer a wide selection of open and flexible floor plans that allow working at home in today’s new lifestyle. They feature an abundance of natural light, large scale “great rooms” for living, dining, and cooking, as well as luxurious bathrooms. The project also features the opportunity for residents to engage in unique events through a preferred access program to the city’s top cultural and social attractions through Millennium Partners’ proprietary La Vie program. La Vie will offer a collection of exclusive activities and events designed to enable a sense of community among residents while also connecting them to the urban vitality of their city. Residents will enjoy an on-premises private club with casual dining, a library and a beautifully cultivated garden area. They will also have access to a 24-hour private resident concierge, as well as a staff trained to the same exacting, award-winning standards of the five-star Ritz-Carlton Hotel and Towers directly across the street, also developed and owned by Millennium Partners.

Members-only nightclubs. Private events planning. Working from home. And, of course, the obligatory private fitness center, though this one will also have a connection to the Sports Club/LA on Avery Street with its "Pilates, massage, and yoga studios."

See what we're getting at? All you need is grocery delivery and there will be no reason at all to step outside! And it's not just Millennium Place promising not only privacy but exclusivity. There's Millennium Tower, which will offer much the same amenities, and the Ritz Carlton and buildings like The Clarendon and the coming Copley Place (all of them, needless to say, with a high barrier of entry price-wise). It's almost like date nights—or whatever reason for leaving the building on a weeknight—are supposed to transform Downtown Crossing. Brave, new world.

· Ladies and Gentlemen, the Millennium Tower [Curbed Boston]
· Boston's Tallest Condo Tower Gets More Affordable Housing [Curbed Boston]

Ritz-Carlton Residences

2 Avery Street, Boston, MA 02111

Millennium Tower

1 Franklin Street, , MA 02110 Visit Website