What's this? A Jamaica Plain development not facing residents' ire? Not only not facing residents' ire, but being driven by residents? It's true. A group of long-time neighbors have gotten together to build on a site on Robeson Road.
The Globe's Matt Rochelau has the story of the four neighbors, who've known each other for about 20 years, pooling their monies to buy the 15,500-square-foot at 53 Robeson, a site that's been vacant since the house on it burned in 1980. Part of the neighbors' motive was to not have some outside developer dictate their new neighbor and part was to preserve two large oak trees on the site. Per Rochelau:
Configuring a building that would preserve the lot's two large trees was challenging. They scrapped nearly a dozen designs before settling on their current plan: a 6,600-square-foot, 2½ story residence. From the outside, it will resemble the other large, single-family homes on the street. Inside, the design calls for three, three-bedroom townhouses. The units will be sold. There will be two garage parking spots and five more outside. Construction is supposed to start in the fall. (Naturally, the neighbors are splitting any profits.) Now, of course, this small-scale development at 53 Robeson pales in comparison to the larger stuff that's caused such controversy in JP, including the 196-unit Olmsted Place on South Huntington Avenue and the possible redevelopment of the old Goddard House (also on South Huntington) into hundreds of apartments. Still, it's nice to see such a happy development ending in a Boston that so needs new housing.
· Jamaica Plain Neighbors Team Up to Develop Empty Lot [Globe]
· South Huntington Ave. Readies for Another Round [Curbed Boston]
· Boston Better Hurry Up and Do Something... [Curbed Boston]