A Boston developer is moving ahead with construction of a long-delayed condominium complex on a former Big Dig parcel in Charlestown, advancing the state’s efforts to redevelop surplus property left over from the massive road project.
The Georges Co. has started construction of 17 condominium units that will help fill a triangular lot that has been vacant for nearly 20 years. The project, to be called Warren Green, includes a publicly accessible park at the center of the 1-acre site at Park and Warren streets.
State documents indicate that the condominiums will be spread between four three-story buildings that will ring the site’s perimeter. The project includes 29 parking spaces, 11 on a surface lot and 18 to be located below a building along Warren Street. Executives involved in the project said it is designed to blend with the Colonial homes of the neighborhood.
“It offers an urban approach to family living and streetscape,” said Kevin Joyce, an attorney with the project. “The Federal-style architecture matches the style of surrounding homes and nicely blends the new with the old.”
The development, on land that used to host a ramp into Charlestown from Route 1, is one of several real estate developments taking place on properties that became part of the $15 billion Big Dig. Other developers are building large housing complexes on Big Dig sites across from the TD Garden and in Chinatown at the edge of the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway.
State officials earlier this year approved an agreement to allow the Warren Green project to proceed.
“The Warren Green development will provide a significant boost for Charlestown, creating new construction jobs and turning a vacant lot into family homes,” said Cyndi Roy, a spokeswoman for the Massachusetts Department of Transportation. “This kind of development of the remaining Central Artery parcels is revitalizing communities and providing new economic opportunity throughout the region.”
Much of that development was delayed by the down economy, which dried up financing for the large-scale projects envisioned for many Big Dig sites around Boston.
The Warren Green parcel also became the subject of a legal battle that delayed construction for more than a decade. Kenneth Flynn of Park Place Development was initially awarded rights to develop the property in 1999, but his designation was withdrawn a year later, causing him to sue the now-defunct Massachusetts Turnpike Authority. The matter was eventually settled in 2008, according to state documents.
In a second round of bidding, the Georges Co. was selected out of three proposals submitted for the property. Contractors are now digging foundations for the new buildings, which are scheduled to be completed in the summer of 2013.