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Newbury Street parking lot fetches $40 million ahead of likely redevelopment

Back Bay deal underscores ongoing parking changes in downtown Boston

A parking lot with an entry gate and there’s a pedestrian walking by. Boston Globe via Getty Images

Chicago investment firm L3 Capital has bought the surface parking lot at the corner of Newbury and Dartmouth streets in Back Bay for $40 million, and may fill the one-third-acre parcel with a new retail development.

The family that has owned the lot for decades put it up for sale at the start of 2019, and L3 Capital beat out several other bidders, per the Globe’s Tim Logan. It is unclear what the company will replace the lot with, but L3 does specialize in retail development and their new site is along one of the most coveted U.S. retail drags north of New York City.

The sale also underscores an ongoing trend in downtown Boston: the slow death of conventional parking norms. Developers are converting garages, investors are snapping up lots (usually for development), and spots are disappearing to make way for bus lanes and ride-hail drop-off points.

Meanwhile, too, new developments are opening or going up without on-site parking, something that would have been unheard of in downtown Boston only a decade ago.