Friday, January 22, 2016

22-Story Apartment Tower Coming to Kendall Square

The Ames Street Residences is a 200,000 square foot residential high rise with 280 apartment units and 16,000 square feet of retail space on the ground floor. The  project, designed by FX/Fowle, will be a slender 22-story tower by rising in front of the Kendall Center East Garage, overlooking the Cambridge Center rooftop garden. 

There will be a mix of unit types at 88 Ames Street, including micro-units, studios, one-bedrooms, and two-bedrooms. Developer Boston Properties will set aside 36 apartments in the new building as affordable housing units.

The residential development has been debated for more than a decade, and was originally planned for the site now occupied by the Broad Institute’s new building at 75 Ames Street, located across the street from the site.

The project will now stand on a vacant lot on the south side of Ames Street, between 4 and 5 Kendall Center.

Boston Properties aims to transform Ames Street, between Main Street and Broadway, from a service street to a more active, pedestrian friendly streetscape with active ground floor use on both sides of the street.

The project includes a significant commitment to bicycle transportation with the addition of 296 secure, on-site, weather protected spaces accessible by residents and retail employees.

There will also be an additional 38 short-term bicycle parking spaces along Pioneer Way.

The city had initially asked Boston Properties to subsidize half the cost of a monthly bus and subway CharlieCard for the first 12 months of residence for all tenants, and also to fund $50,000 for Kendall Square transit improvements.

The developer’s counter-offer was for one month of CharlieCards.

After month of wrangling, both side agreed that for each resident, Boston Properties will provide three months of a subsidized CharlieCard and one year of Hubway membership.

The developer will also contribute $50,000 towards transit improvements, construct a Hubway station and install two electric vehicle charging stations.