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Old 06-28-2008, 08:46 AM   #41
whighlander
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

Ablarc re: Transit

I don't think that moving the Orange Line is an option and as there is nothing in the present land parcel on the other side of the Orange Line -- it has to be at one edge.

That said -- if the development is successful -- I would expect to see some redevelopment of the parcels on the other side of the tracks to happen eventually -- thereby integrating the transit into the midst of the "new nieghborhood"

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Old 06-28-2008, 08:51 AM   #42
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

RE: Transit at Assembly

PS: If this development is successful then somewhere down th road (about 10 years or so) it should re-invigorates the potential of a conversion of Wellington's parking lots into high density development and to then add a T-stop to the River's Edge development to better urbanize the strip along the Mystic

All this and Ikea too!

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Old 07-21-2008, 02:23 PM   #43
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

Quote:
$1.75B Assembly Sq. Project to Finally See Groundbreaking
By Thomas Grillo
Reporter


Rendering courtesy of Vanasse Hangen Brustlin
An artist?s rendering of Assembly Square. After years of delay, construction is expected to begin in September.


After a decade of delays and courtroom battles, the $1.75 billion project at Assembly Square in Somerville is expected to break ground after Labor Day.

?We?re on track and moving forward,? Somerville Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone told Banker & Tradesman.

The 50-acre, transit-oriented development wedged between Medford and Charlestown promises 1.75 million square feet of office space, 2,100 condominiums and apartments, a 200-room hotel, 852,000 square feet of retail including Swedish furniture giant IKEA, a new MBTA Orange Line station and more than 160,000 square feet of parkland at the edge of the Mystic River.

Robert Walsh, vice president of Northeast development at Federal Realty Investment Trust, the Maryland-based company that paid $64 million for the parcel in 2005, said it expects to demolish buildings in September on Sturtevant Street, including the Good Time Em-porium, to make way for Ikea and a new road.

?We?re pretty excited about getting started,? he said. ?We expect construction to start soon on the mile-long Assembly Square Drive, the infrastructure backbone for the development, and then the foundation for IKEA will be poured.?

The history of transforming what has been called ?Somerville?s last frontier? has all the ingredients for a real estate development case study. While Boston and Cambridge officials planned waterfront projects without big box stores, a succession of Assembly Square land-owners and Somerville mayors fought to turn the failed Assembly Square Mall into a retail Mecca.

But through a series of lawsuits, the Mystic View Task Force, a citywide advocacy group, forced the city and the developers to abide by zoning requirements for a mixed-use development at the waterfront location.

While some neighborhood organizations routinely fight any kind of development with a NIMBY (Not In My Backyard) approach, Mystic View demanded a denser development, free of sprawling retail stores and a sea of parking lots. It successfully argued the site would be better served with office and research-and-development space, which generates more tax dollars and less traffic than giant stores.

In 2006, Mystic View and Federal ended a decade of lawsuits when a compromise was reached requiring the developer to contribute $15 million toward a $40 million Orange Line stop between the Sullivan Square and Wellington stations to help keep cars off city streets. Since then the developer has sought a series of environmental and other permits to commence construction.

Today, Mystic View members won?t talk about whether the concession for an IKEA, which attracts more than 1 million patrons to its stores annually, was in the best interest of the city.

?That fight is over,? said Sate Senator Patricia Jehlen, a Somerville Democrat and Mystic View member. ?There?s no sense in talking about it anymore.?

Instead, Jehlen said she has focused on making sure the waterfront land swap between Federal Realty and the state Department of Conservation & Recreation was in the public?s interest. The exchange provides the developer with a 1.5 acre parcel that was used by the Winter Hill Yacht Club for boat storage. In return, the state gets a 1.8 acre lot that will be added to the waterfront park. The home rule petition is before the Legislature and is expected to be approved before the session ends, she said.

While many Somerville residents brace for massive traffic jams as shoppers seek IKEA bargains, Elliot Tatelman, whose Jordan?s Furntuire in Avon is across the street from IKEA in Stoughton, said the traffic worries are shortlived.

?The first couple of months were a disaster,? he said. ?We couldn?t do any business, and Costco and Home Depot also suffered be-cause our cusomers could not get down the street. It hurt us, but now that has gone away and traffic flows.?
http://www.bankerandtradesman.com/pu.../200352-1.html

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Old 09-26-2008, 10:11 AM   #44
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

Quote:
Will Assembly Square be left out of Urban Ring?

New proposal would end at Sullivan, with bus service to Assembly

By George P. Hassett

A much-hyped transit project expected to connect Assembly Square to research centers, universities and Logan Airport could skip the city for a stop in Boston if state officials choose a new plan unveiled this week.

Ned Codd, manager of planned development for the state, presented a new option for the Urban Ring at a public meeting Monday in Boston. If adopted, the new plan would feature a stop at Sullivan Station instead of the previously proposed location of Assembly Square. The state chose to consider Sullivan after meeting with city officials in Somerville who were skeptical that Assembly Square's roadways could handle the bus lines needed to accommodate the project, Codd said. A plan by Boston officials to lessen congestion on Rutherford Avenue also made Sullivan an option, he said.

Under the new proposal, Assembly Square would still be served by the Urban Ring - a sprawling public transit system that would run in a roughly circular ring, connecting most of greater Boston - just not as well. Instead of buses running on traffic-free, dedicated roadways, a bus connection traveling through regular traffic would run from Sullivan to Assembly.

The state's proposal raises questions about the future of possibly the city's most important development project. An Urban Ring link to Assembly Square would connect the area's future mixed-use development to employment centers and major educational and medical institutions in Boston and Cambridge. It is considered to be an integral part of attracting 5 million square feet of office space to the development that would provide a much needed boost to the city's tax base. The developers of Assembly Square, Federal Realty Investment Trust, are also legally obligated to build that much office space.

City officials, however, do not seem to be outraged about possibly being left out of a direct connection to the Urban Ring.

City spokesman Tom Champion said the project is not expected to be built until 2020 and stressed that no decisions have been made concerning Assembly Square.

?The Urban Ring is not abandoning Somerville,? said Dick Garver of the Boston Redevelopment Authority at Monday's meeting. ?Somerville is abandoning the Urban Ring.?

Calls to Federal Realty for this story went unreturned.

Alderman-at-Large William A. White said he would put in an order at the next Board of Aldermen meeting asking the city's director of planning and development, Monica Lamboy, to discuss the issue with the aldermen.

Codd said state transit officials ?recognize that it is very important to provide service to Assembly Square as part of the Urban Ring.? And Champion said city officials are not ?abandoning the Urban Ring? as Garver suggested. ?It is both inappropriate and premature to suggest that Somerville has walked away from the Urban Ring.?
LINK
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Old 09-26-2008, 11:07 AM   #45
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

Instead of creating a new station would it be possible and desirable to move Sullivan Sq station to the other side of 93?
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Old 09-26-2008, 12:50 PM   #46
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

What do you mean other side? It is UNDER 93. It isn't on a side.
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Old 09-26-2008, 01:12 PM   #47
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

But it would sure be nice to improve access to the station from East Somerville -- perhaps with a pedestrian bridge from the end of Perkins Street.
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Old 09-26-2008, 01:20 PM   #48
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

yes, over by Assembly Sq Drive.
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Old 10-26-2008, 09:45 PM   #49
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

I think they should put the whole Orange Line back exactly where it was --but underground.
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Old 10-26-2008, 10:09 PM   #50
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

The northern endpoint of the old Orange Line was in a totally useless location. Malden is a much better place for it.
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Old 10-27-2008, 05:53 AM   #51
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

^ Yeah, but the rest ...
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Old 10-29-2008, 07:04 PM   #52
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

Today 10-29-08
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Old 10-29-2008, 07:37 PM   #53
PaulC
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

This looks like the official web site:

http://www.assemblyonthemystic.com/

http://www.assemblysquare.com/index.html
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Old 10-30-2008, 12:50 PM   #54
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulC View Post
Thanks for the links. This looks like it is going to be a great boost to the area. Something needed to be done to help this area out.

It's sad though that Good Times is going bye bye. Any plans for this to poen at a new location?
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Old 10-30-2008, 12:57 PM   #55
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

They got a license to open an expanded Good Times in Brockton, but then could not get financing.
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Old 02-08-2009, 11:37 AM   #56
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

http://www.bostonherald.com/business...ess&position=2
Quote:
A former state senator is pushing a proposal to build a self-storage facility in Somerville?s Assembly Square, but critics say it could kill development of the 145-acre district.

?If they did a perfect job, it might work,? said Wig Zamore, a founding member of the Mystic View Task Force, a citywide advocacy group. ?If they do a bad job, it will be toxic to any future Assembly Square development.?

The storage idea follows a failed 10-year fight by the task force to create a new waterfront neighborhood and keep giant retailers from constructing stores on what many consider Somerville?s last frontier. Swedish furniture chain Ikea is expected to start building a 310,000-square-foot store next year.

The sprawling Assembly Square parcel is located along the Mystic River between Charlestown and Medford.

Urban planners say it could be a model for transit-oriented development similar to East Cambridge?s waterfront and Boston?s emerging Seaport district.

?Somerville must be vigilant about creating an urban village at Assembly Square and resist projects that don?t meet the city?s vision,? said Terry Szold, a land-use professor in MIT?s Department of Urban Studies & Planning. ?A bland self-storage center will hurt the city?s image and won?t contribute jobs or tax revenues.?

Some residents insist that the city has settled for retail instead of holding out for office, R&D and small retail that could transform the desolate district into a neighborhood that would generate hefty tax revenues and good paying jobs for the cash-strapped city.

?Somerville has a history of taking whatever it can get from developers rather than insisting on what?s best for city,? said William Shelton, former Mystic View president.

Former state Senator George Bachrach, a partner at SSG Development, has met with Somerville planners and community groups to float the idea of a storage building at 50 Middlesex Ave. The firm has an offer to purchase the truck terminal on the site that is assessed at $1.1 million.

Bachrach did not return calls seeking comment.

Adam Dash, SSG?s attorney, said the firm has not filed anything with the city and he did not know the project?s size or price tag and could not provide images of the buildings.

Storage facilities are not an allowed use at Assembly Square sothe developer would need a zoning change to build, Dash said.

Monica Lamboy, head of the city?s Office of Strategic Planning and Community Development, said SSG is proposing two buildings - a six-story self-storage facility and a two-story office building. She said the storage center would be ?uniquely designed? for the location.

The concept could work, Lamboy said, because the parcel has many constraints and the developer would be willing to allow the city to divide the site to make way for a new road connecting to Foley Street into Assembly Square.

?This is a very unique site and the storage and office buildings could be a pretty good use given the constraints of the location,? she said.

Robert May, the city?s director of economic development, said the new buildings would be an improvement over the truck stop. ?It?s in a disheveled state of affairs,? he said.
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Old 02-08-2009, 03:15 PM   #57
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

After seeing first hand what a new IKEA did to Red Hook, Brooklyn, I am pretty pessimistic about Assembly Sq being the next great neighborhood. Maybe in 20 years? But IKEA is just another big box store. Wal-Mart would have been no different.
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Old 03-03-2009, 07:57 PM   #58
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

http://www.wickedlocal.com/somervill...s-funds-coming
Quote:
Stimulus money will go to creating new roads for the new neighborhood, Kerry said. Construction of a road that will lead to the Ikea store -- Curtatone called it "the main spine of the development" -- is set to begin in April, Briggs said. The second phase of the construction, which includes office, retail and residential space, won't begin until 2011. By that time, Briggs said he expects the economy to rebound.
"The stimulus is going to help us bridge the gap until that time," Briggs said.
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Old 03-03-2009, 08:05 PM   #59
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

The fact that this money is NOT going towards building a T station right now is proof of just how fucked up the MBTA is. This is outrageous (or it would be if our opinions of the T weren't so low.)
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Old 03-03-2009, 08:11 PM   #60
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Re: Assembly Square Redevelopment

I would doubt that the project is shovel ready. Is it even a definite? It's not even on the T's web site.

I believe that four corners will be getting stimulus money and if there is a phase 2 then two additional fairmont line stations may get money.

Too bad they can't fast track some of the work on the somerville green line. Some of the work must be known at this point

Last edited by PaulC; 03-03-2009 at 09:22 PM.
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