Developer Ad Meliora last week filed plans with the BPDA for a two-building, 305-unit development off Hyde Park Avenue at the Milton Street Bridge.
Ad Meliora, based downtown, says it would build a 221-space garage on the 2.5-acre site, just north of the Readville commuter-rail station, and would create a 2,000-square-foot pocket park open to the public - in addition to the courtyard with a pool for tenants and owners at the proposed Residences at Readville Station.
A key issue for the developer - and for a separate developer planning a 492-unit development just south of the train station - is the intersections of Hyde Park Avenue and Neponset Valley Parkway with the Milton Street Bridge, also known as the Father Hart Bridge, which have no traffic lights and which are a challenge for drivers even on a Saturday afternoon:
Ad Meliora says not to worry: The city will install traffic lights at either end of the bridge - and replace the aging traffic lights in the nearby Wolcott Square. In 2017, Mayor Walsh announced a $1.4-million project to add and update the lights. The bridge intersections - with conflicting jurisdictions between the city, the state DCR and the MBTA - remain without traffic signals, but the city's current budget, which ends June 30 - has money for the work.
The developer adds it expects any traffic impacts from the development would be minimized because most residents would use the nearby train station to get into town. Nearby residents, however, worry that people will drive to the Fairmount station a mile away, because a round trip from there costs $4.50, rather than the $13.50 it would cost to get into town and back from Readville, because the two stations are in different fare zones.
Ad Meliora's proposal calls for one building of apartments and the other of condos, both with six floors. The company says it expects its project to be the first of several in which the old industrial lots along Hyde Park Avenue are replaced with residential complexes:
Well-situated for public transportation near the MBTA Readville Station, the project will begin to establish an urban street wall edge along Hyde Park Avenue. The proposed new streetscape improvements, along with the “pocket park” and proposed new restaurant will benefit this stretch of Hyde Park Avenue by establishing a pedestrian-friendly zone. And assuming that, over a period of time, there will be future re-development of some of the adjacent remaining industrial sites, this building will help ‘set the stage’ for the kind of additional future streetscape improvements that will continue to benefit the neighborhood as it gradually changes from an industrial area to a place offering varied residential and commercial opportunities for the local citizenry.
Ad Meliora hopes to begin an expected 18 months of construction this fall.
The proposed view north on Hyde Park Avenue from near the train bridge: