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Slowdown in Boston’s apartment market? Delay in rental tower’s construction

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Garden Garage replacement

Rendering via Elkus Manfredi

In what might be another sign of Boston’s cooling apartment market, the developer of the 44-story, 470-unit replacement of the West End’s Garden Garage has pushed back the start of construction to 2018.

Plans that developer Equity Residential filed for 35 Lomasney Way in 2015 called for a June 2016 star and a June 2019 completion. The former never happened and the latter looks unlikely.

Why the delay? Equity Residential blamed rising construction costs and lower potential yields in the rental market.

In other words, it looks to the developer of what would be one of Boston’s tallest new apartment towers like the city’s rental market is shifting in favor of tenants.

Whether that’s actually the case in terms of real-time rents is debatable. But the news of Equity’s move follows on the heels of developer HYM Investment Group’s decision to convert dozens of its planned apartments at the under-construction Bulfinch Crossing project to condos instead.

One more and it’s a trend.