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Developer to replace Dorchester church with smaller church - and 40 apartments

The Zoning Board of Appeal today approved a developer's plan to replace Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church, at 500 Talbot Ave., at Argyle Street, with a four-story apartment building.

JPA Development Co. of Braintree will reserve about 2,000 square feet of space in the building's first floor for a smaller space for the church, which has seen its flock shrink in recent years to the point it was having trouble keeping up the existing church building, the developer's attorney, John Pulgini, told the board at a hearing this morning.

Five of the units in the building, which will have 7 studios, 22 one-bedroom units and 11 three-bedroom units, will be rented as affordable. The building will have 23 parking spaces in an underground garage and a second first-floor space that will be rented to a store or business.

The offices of Mayor Walsh and City Councilors Andrea Campbell, Michael Flaherty and Annissa Essaibi-George spoke in favor of the proposal. Nobody spoke against. The BPDA approved the proposal last fall.

500 Talbot Ave. small-project review application (7.5M PDF).

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This sounds great! There is a need for creative use of space to allow churches to survive and thrive; and also to re-use church spaces that are too big or need too much maintenance.

Voting closed 10

Good luck filling any of that business space

Voting closed 20

The great “genericification” of Boston: Rip down a small building with character and history; replace it with a giant building that looks like every other new building. Fill new building with young professionals without children. Rinse and repeat ad nauseum.

Voting closed 18

maybe if there were more small character filled houses that were AFFORDABLE, young professionals could afford to have kids.

Voting closed 15

That church has all the character of a concrete bunker. Half is generic brick and the rest is prison grey concrete.

"Rip down a small building with character and history; replace it with a giant building that looks like every other new building" - Person from 1800's complaining about all the new brownstones.

Voting closed 14

but that doesn’t detract from the genericness of new proposed building.

Furthermore, this developer has a history of bulldozing nice buildings to build schlock for gentrifiers. They are currently marketing $1.2m condos in Savin Hill (to fund this venture).

Voting closed 10