A 29-story, 391-room hotel at 560 Commonwealth Avenue in Kenmore Square looks increasingly likely following the Boston Planning and Development Agency’s approval of the project on December 13.
The triangular property at Beacon Street and Comm. Ave. would resemble Manhattan’s famed Flatiron building, and would also mean the demolition of the existing building at the site. What’s more, the project would lead to a new publicly accessible street connecting Comm. Ave. and Beacon—behind the hotel as well as in between a new plaza, also part of the project, and the former building’s site.
Mark Development, the firm behind the project (it first proposed it back in May 2017), has said that the streetscape changes will help Kenmore traffic move through the square like a “signalized round-about.” In the end, the changes would mean the elimination of 200 feet of the southbound portion of Comm. Ave. and 300 feet of the westbound portion of Beacon.
Aside from the streetscape changes and the Studio Gang Architects design, the building will also be notable for opening in a Kenmore that’s seeing other development-driven changes and in a wider Boston hospitality market that’s seeing no signs of slowing down.
Boston University, for instance, is building another architecturally striking building in the neighborhood. The hub for the school’s mathematics, computer science, and statistics departments at 645-665 Commonwealth Avenue will look like a stack of books. And developer Related Beal is redeveloping several Kenmore buildings, including 660 Beacon Street, which hosts the Citgo sign.
Meanwhile, a recent report from brokerage CBRE Inc. forecasted that Boston’s hotel market will enter the 2020s in particularly fine nick. Among other trends, room rates are expected to inch upward.