Built in 1979, the Dock Square Garage is not a building anyone would consider historic nor architecturally distinctive, however it is located near some of the most significant historic resources in the city: Quincy Market, the Blackstone Block, the North End and within the viewshed of the Custom House Tower. Fortis Property Group of New York has proposed the construction of a ten-level, approximately 195-unit addition atop the garage and recladding of the brick façade on the existing garage. They propose a Planned Development Area to allow them to exceed height and FAR limits established in both the Greenway District Guidelines and the Market Protection Area. The Alliance feels it is out of scale and context for this extremely historically significant neighborhood. The Boston Civic Design Commission and many members of the community agree.
The Alliance has expressed our concern, not with redevelopment and the opportunities of re-envisioning of this garage (a rather non-descript, innocuous non-entity within the neighborhood), but with the scale and insensitivity to the historic area where it is centered. We also are troubled with a growing trend of “glass hats” being placed on top of historic buildings. Finally we want to see successful ground floor/pedestrian engagement in any new use here, and the current proposal provides little. We sent a letter expressing our concerns to the BPDA in April 2018.
Highlights from our activity log:
• April 2018
Alliance files comment letter with the Boston Planning and Development Agency. Earlier in the month the Alliance attended the Boston Civic Design Commission and one BCDC subcommittee meeting where there was strong Commission opposition to the proposal’s height, scale, and massing, particularly in this historic area. We were also represented at a public meeting where there were numerous voices opposed as well as questions about how this proposal will interact and engage with a new hotel recently approved for an adjacent parcel in Haymarket. The existing garage is 70’ tall and the proposal is for 193’ to the top of the last occupied floor, 213’ to top of penthouse.