BOSTON (WHDH) - A development dilemma is unfolding in Charlestown where a plan is in the works to bring more housing and retail space to the neighborhood.
As officials discuss the plan, some fear the proposal will lead to crowding, with lack of parking and additional traffic trouble listed as two common concerns.
“Just looking at those views, I’m shocked you all would think that is totally OK to add to Charlestown,” one resident said after Boston’s planning and development agency passed the final plan Thursday to remake much of historic Charlestown.
The full plan, known as PLAN: Charlestown, aims to help create additional housing while Boston grapples with a historic housing crisis for middle and low-income earners.
On Thursday, though, much of the focus at the Boston Planning and Development Agency’s (BPDA) Board of Directors meeting was on two projects — a mixed use apartment building on Mystic Avenue and another project off Roland Street.
In all, the buildings would involve more than 600 new units that could add thousands of additional people to Charlestown even though both buildings would be built away from the most crowded local areas.
“The overall increase in density and height is simply too much for Charlestown to absorb,” said City Councilor Gabriela Coletta, who represents Charlestown.
“It’s very greedy,” said one other person. “It’s very greedy by developers. And shame on the BPDA for continuing to kind of facilitate it.”
While some have voiced concerns, the proposal in Charlestown has garnered support from some residents, trade unions and Boston Mayor Michelle Wu.
“Obviously, the city does have a housing crisis and this does seem like a great way to get some new units there and it seems unfortunate that it’s taken so long to build,” one person said.
Others like State Representative Daniel Ryan simply asked for more time.
“This community needs to stay together,” Ryan said. “We can’t worry about this presentation. This is all about the next 10, 20, 30 years.”
Planned development changes in Charlestown date back to the mayoral tenure of Marty Walsh.
Passed by the Boston Planning and Development Agency, the plan for Charlestown now goes to the Boston’s zoning commission, which will discuss the plan in its own public meeting.
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