By Seth Daniel
The old Harley Davidson building on the Parkway is now just another footnote in history, as Post Road Development, led by Andy Montelli of Connecticut, has taken down the building and is more than ready to begin work on the new 284-unit luxury apartment building planned for the site.
“We’re totally pregnant with this thing,” he told the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) on Monday night. “The building is down. The crew has been mobilized. We’ve begun.”
Montelli is the former developer of the Batch Yard Lofts and apartments on Lower Broadway, one of the first developments in the city credited with ushering in a new day for residential projects in the city. With the success of Batch Yard a few years back, he quickly moved on to do more projects in Everett.
Last summer, he brought the plan to the ZBA and the Planning Board for review, saying he had such a great experience in Everett that he wanted to return back quickly.
“They’re moving on this right away and moving very fast,” said their attorney, David O’Neil of Everett. “This is just another fantastic project that this group has brought to Everett. In many ways, they have been game changers here.”
All last week, Post Road set to tearing down the old Harley building that, like it or not, had become a landmark for Everett in many corners of the region. Now, this week, the building is demolished, and the site will now become the first residential project on the heavily industrial “other” side of the Parkway, making the area likely to be known for fine accommodations rather than motorcycles.
O’Neil reported that the company received its building permit on July 12, and would be pouring the foundation and securing a final building permit in the weeks to come.
Post Road closed on the property in early May, paying $8 million to Woods Realty Trust for the site.
On Monday night, Post Road requested, and was unanimously approved, to extend their variances received last summer for another six months. Montelli and O’Neil specified that the extension was purely to satisfy other partners and investors in the project from Boston who wanted to make sure all the particulars were in line.
“This is really just to satisfy some Boston attorneys,” Montelli said.
A delay came due to things out of their control, he said.
First, the car company that had leased the Harley building took a little longer than expected to vacate the premises. Then, the owners of Phunk Phenomenon (which was also demolished for the project) asked to be able to stay on until the end of the school year.
The project came in with much fanfare last year, with most everyone excited to see the landmark developer return with an even more exciting project. At the time, Montelli said he had taken his design and engineering team on a trip to the West Coast in search of new ideas to bring to the Everett site.
The project includes the residential units, and also incorporates retail at the street level.