By Seth Daniel
The developer of the Batch Yard, Post Road Residential, is returning to Everett for another large project – this time at a prominent location on the Parkway in the old Boston Harley dealership.
Post Road President Andy Montelli is now before the Planning Board and is hoping to build 280 units of rental apartment housing with 3,000 sq. ft. of two-story retail space on the very-visible corner bounded by Vale Street and Restaurant Depot.
City Planner Tony Sousa said the proposal is before the Planning Board now and will also have to go before the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA). While it hasn’t been approved yet and is under careful review, he did say that any time a successful developer returns to do more business in the City, it’s a positive sign.
“It’s going to be a very interesting project to see unfold,” said Sousa. “Redevelopment projects like these have the potential accelerate other developments. This will hopefully accelerate more projects on Revere Beach Parkway and within our Triangle Master Plan area. It shows some real momentum there if it is approved. Both the hotel and this development are the kinds of project we could use…The developer is the same as the Batch Yard and has developed a track record and a solid reputation. It really is something for a developer to come back, not only to develop one time, but to come back and do more development here.”
Right now the plans call for 280 units, 60 percent being one-bedrooms and studios, in one building. There would be four or five stories of units over two levels of parking, with 425 parking spaces provided.
Mayor Carlo DeMaria has been encouraged by the development, and has called for more retail spaces within residential projects.
Post Road has accommodated that preference by adding a two-story, 3,000 sq. ft. retail space that would front the development. Inside, the developer hopes to attract a brew pup or coffee shop.
The current Harley building would be demolished to make way for the larger residential building, which will be set back from the street as the developer has indicated to the City he didn’t want to create wall of buildings fronting the Parkway.
It would be built all in one phase, and would likely resemble the newer buildings at the Batch Yard fronting Lower Broadway.
Some of the early amenities outlined include bicycle storage, a bike repair shop, a pet spa, a weight gym, and aerobic gym, Yoga Studio, Spin Studio, roof decks and an outdoor courtyard that will include a fire pit, bocce court and a movie screen.
One key new amenity is a work from home office.
Filings showed that the building contemplates offering an Office Suite as an amenity to residents who want to work from home and use the space. Instead of having to rent office space at an incubator or flex-space location, residents can just reserve the Office Suite.
Sousa said one unique thing about the project in the early stages is that Post Road has hired an Urban Designer before anyone else. Though an architect and a full development team is now in place, Post Road began the process by looking at the entire area with an Urban Planner.
“It works well in that the architect can look at the site and the plans for the site and the urban designer looks at the whole neighborhood as a bigger piece,” he said.
He also said the mayor and the Planning Office see the proposal as a potential next piece after the InVision Hotel.
“You have the hotel that’s come on board and now another developer has returned to potentially do more development and the other developers watching this see the investment,” he said. “They may now decide that now they should begin thinking about it too. They may realize that there is something to it and they should get in on it.”