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Boston real estate this spring: What to watch for and expect

Including with prices and rents

It’s the first day of spring—though you’d hardly know it with the weather—and that means it’s time to look forward a few months.

What’s on the horizon for the Boston area’s neighborhoods and real estate?

Construction galore

Rendering of six-building Bulfinch Crossing
Bulfinch Crossing
HYM Investment Group

Major projects such as the South Station tower, Bulfinch Crossing, and the South Bay Town Center expansion are expected to either get underway this season or to pick up their construction pace toward scheduled openings in 2018 or soon after.

Meanwhile, the region’s construction boom will continue apace, whether it’s hotels, theaters, apartments, or office towers.

Decision time

Winthrop Square tower
Handel Architects

There could be reckonings for several different projects this spring, including the long-stalled Fenway Center, the perennially controversial Boston Harbor Garage redevelopment, and 2 Charlesgate West out in Fenway.

And, speaking of garages, the spring might be make or break for what’s supposed to be New England’s tallest residential tower: the one slated to replace the city-owned Winthrop Square Garage.

A condo cool-down?

It would probably be wishful thinking on the part of prospective buyers, but mortgage rates are due to rise and the condo market is getting a bit frothy of late.

Still, it’s not like there’s a crash in prices on the horizon. Right?

Rental market repeat

While prices might moderate this spring, apartment rents by any measure will likely remain high.

The Boston area has been the nation’s third most expensive in terms of rents for so long, it’s hard to imagine it as anything else.

Even with all the new construction, there’s just too much demand and too many prospective tenants able to pony up the monthly amounts.

Green Line’s next stop

Peter Alfred Hess/Flickr

The region’s biggest infrastructure project could get some big news from the federal government this season—and it might not be good news.

The Trump administration is said to be backing off its original plans for massive infrastructure spending.

And, while funding for the Green Line’s extension through Somerville into Medford is largely already in place, sizable federal cuts could delay it well past 2020.

Tipping points

Malden is going to happen this spring. We’re calling it. The new Somerville and all that.

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