Zoning Board Online Hearing re: 246.1 Market St.

Some time ago we all received notices about a hearing regarding the number of units to be allowed in the derelict building attached to the rear of Canal Place. That hearing was postponed and is now taking place tomorrow online. More information about the meeting and how to participate can be found here. Information about the plans themselves is available here.

The original post on this subject in March is here, although the variance being requested will only mean the difference between 25 units and 29, not the huge jump the post mentions. It appears we have no say over most of the increase, only the last four the developer would like to squeeze in.

Please spread the word to any neighbors you think might not subscribe to the Bulletin Board. Since abutters notices were mailed earlier this year, there will be no additional communication of this information beyond the bulletin board outside of City Hall.

2 thoughts on “Zoning Board Online Hearing re: 246.1 Market St.”

  1. I dont understand why our comments were left out of this decision. We are abutters and deserve proper notification! We live in one of the most densly populated areas of Lowell. Why is the developer allowed to apply for zoning variances to make it even denser? I am thinking of such things as noise, traffic, garbage collection, recycling and other impacts on neighbors. I am very disappointed that these projects are being approved without due process.

  2. So outcome from tonight’s epically long board meeting is that the request for off-site parking was approved and the boards kicked the can down the line for a modification of the plans from 29 units to (likely) 27 in order to fall just under the threshold of 50% undersized units in lieu of the fact that reducing the plans by 2 units no longer triggers a need for board approval, is that about right?

    For those who have been here a bit longer that might have actually seen the original plans, were there really on two potential design plans proposed over the last 5-10 years of this building sitting empty? It seems silly to assume that a zoning board vote is between the extremes of 11 luxury units with in-building parking that would further increase traffic versus 29 micro-apartments because Lowell wants to be the next Cambridge.

    The idea that micro-apartments are the key to affordable housing or that Millennials and empty nesters are fighting over the privilege of living in 598 square feet spaces for $100 less than the 800 square foot space they can split with a roommate or partner seems like a trap many cities fall into.

    More often subdivision is simply the quickest path to greater margins for the developers, a tactic we seen executed every day in condo conversions of single family homes.

    Lastly, while the board claims there is no indication of where columns are, it seem highly likely that the small rectangular cutout denoted in the bedrooms of each floor below are likely the space intended to house columns, similar to the ones in 200. If that is indeed the case, what is the issue in simply two small units per floor? You’d end up with 2 large units, 2 small units/floor for a reasonable compromise outcome of 15 total apartments: still above the original 11 units, but keeping parking/traffic offsite and density reduced.


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