High-End Rental Building Planned for Jamaica Plain

By Veronica Grecu, Associate Editor A 3.5-acre property in Jamaica Plain will be converted into luxury rental units, adding to Boston’s construction wave. The former site of the Home for Little Wanderers at 161 S. Huntington Avenue was purchased less than [...]

A 3.5-acre property in Jamaica Plain will be converted into luxury rental units, adding to Boston’s construction wave. The former site of the Home for Little Wanderers at 161 S. Huntington Avenue was purchased less than one week ago by developer Boston Residential Group as part of a $75 million redevelopment project that also covers the acquisition costs.

The existing main orphanage building is almost 100 years old but, according to the Boston Herald, it was never designated a historic site or city landmark, which would suit perfectly the developer’s plan to raise a completely new structure. Construction on the four- or five-story apartment building is scheduled to break ground in the first quarter of 2013 as the project requires changing the site’s zoning from institutional to multifamily residential use, reports the Jamaica Plain Gazette.

The high-end residential building would have up to 200 units, most of them studios or one-bedrooms designed for singles and young couples, while a smaller number of two-bedroom rental units would be available for families with children. And 13 percent of the apartments would be marketed as affordable housing units, as required by Boston Redevelopment Authority regulations. Residents would have access to a fitness center, a patio and a shared community space equipped with a kitchen.

Given area residents’ increased tendency to use alternative transportation, Boston Residential Group plans to create a Zipcar-sharing station as well as an underground garage with only 150 parking spaces. The retail component, which is usually in demand when it comes to multifamily developments, was deliberately left aside in this particular case because the construction is very close to the Hyde Square commercial district.