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Brookline’s 455 Harvard only second new rental building in town in past decade

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Apartments in 17-unit project near Coolidge Corner start at more than $3,200 a month

Renderings courtesy of the Danesh Group

A 17-unit apartment building at 455 Harvard Street in Brookline has started leasing, with one-bedrooms starting at $3,250 a month, two-bedrooms at $4,400, and three-bedrooms at $5,000.

The project is only the second newly constructed rental building in Brookline in the past decade, according to developer the Danesh Group. The company was also behind the first such building, at 45 Marion Street, which finished construction in 2016.

That 455 Harvard and 45 Marion are the only two newly constructed rental buildings in a town of nearly 60,000 on the Boston border underscores a gnawing problem for the region at large, one that helps explain why its housing is so expensive: a lack of multifamily construction in communities beyond Boston.

A recent report from the Massachusetts Smart Growth Alliance and six other organizations blamed byzantine zoning regulations from town to town and city to city. There are other reasons, too, including construction and land costs as well as a dearth of develop-able sites in many locales (though that’s due in part to the zoning).

As for the Danesh Group’s four-story 455 Harvard, it is designed in a contemporary style, with open floorpans and a washer/dryer in each unit. The developer is also touting the building’s proximity to the Longwood Medical and Coolidge Corner areas as well as to downtown Boston, Cambridge, and the Green Line.

There will also be a fitness room and garage parking as well as ground-floor retail space (the project replaced a single-story retail building). Construction is supposed to wrap this summer. Encore Realty is handling the leasing.