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With the demise of the 115 Federal scheme, a new push is underway to redevelop the garage at Winthrop Square which was a part of the 115 Federal plan. Under new guidelines, development will be restricted to 725 ft. tall towers, the original supertall proposal having run into a buzzsaw of regulatory and political resistance.


Eight proposals to develop Winthrop Square have been released:

Latest Winthrop Square Proposals, Renders

A proposal from a team led by Accordia Partners would built a 725-foot tower with 280 hotel rooms, 185 condos, 34,000 square feet of civic and community space, and 2,600 square feet of retail as well as 385 parking spaces.

Millennium Partners would build yet another 725-foot tower (and, bear in mind, this one, like the others, would include dozens of additional feet of mechanical apparatus and antennas). Thirty-eight floors would be given over to condos and perhaps apartments, the makeup isn't clear. At least 14 floors would be offices, and then retail.

Trans National does not go into specifics on height nor unit totals, but its proposed complex would run to 1,715,000 square feet over two towers, with another 250,000 below ground. Residences, including condos, would comprise 915,000 square feet of that above-ground sum, with offices the next biggest chunk at 530,000 square. There would also be a hotel.

Trinity Financial would build a tower of up to 725 feet with 231 hotel rooms on the lower floors; 349 apartments above that; and then 296 condos spread throughout. There would also be a full floor of amenities and one parking space for each condo.
Additional proposals are noted in the above article.


As originally conceived: The rendering of Boston's proposed 1000' tower by Renzo Piano:

Monday, November 13, 2006
One bidder for 1000-foot tower site in Boston

Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino's invitation to developers to build an iconic, 1,000-foot-tall tower on the site of a decaying city-owned parking garage drew only a single bidder today.

Steven Belkin, chairman and founder of Trans National group and an owner of the Atlanta Hawks basketball and Atlanta Thrashers hockey teams, proposed a tower -- which after approvals may turn out to be Boston's tallest building -- with extensive retail space on the ground floor.

The Boston Redevelopment Authority issued a request for proposals for the Winthrop Square public parking garage site, at 115 Federal St., in May; bids were due on today. Belkin, a hugely successful businessman but not as of yet a real estate developer, was considered by many to be the one to beat because he owns a key adjacent property, 133 Federal St.

The odd-shaped parking garage, with a footprint of a little over an acre, is considered much more valuable if a building there could also include the space occupied by Belkin's building.

Belkin has hired Meredith & Grew/Oncor as development manager for his project, and he has been working with architects including the highly regarded Renzo Piano of Italy, who designed the commercial and cultural Centre Pompidou in Paris.

"Very clearly he's been working on this for quite a bit of time,'' said David I. Begelfer, chief executive of the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties' Massachusetts chapter. "He has the land, he has the money, and without question he has the determination to build this."

Belkin pioneered the successful use of "affinity" credit cards, those tied to businesses or nonprofit institutions, and has started more than two dozen companies. He is extensively involved in charitable work in Massachusetts, including efforts on behalf of Harvard University, Combined Jewish Philanthropies, and the Museum of Fine Arts Boston.

Belkin also owns Belkin Family Lookout Farm, in Natick, Mass. He graduated with a degree in engineering from Cornell University in 1969 and received a masters in business from the Harvard Business School in 1971.

Menino surprised the development community in February by giving a speech in which he invited developers to think big, after many year during which tall towers were shunned in Boston. The 60-floor Hancock Tower in the Back Bay is the city's tallest office building.

(By Thomas C. Palmer Jr., Globe staff)
Posted by Boston Globe Business Team at 01:46 PM

9,583 Posts
Another 1000 footer outside NYC and Chicago. Looks good although would like to see some more renders to judge better

476 Posts
how much is a 1000 feet in meters?? sorry for the stupid question..

217 Posts
I like your attitude! For sometime people around here have been saying that the boom is almost over. On the other hand, the 90's were the only postwar decade that didn't witness massive development. There are at least cities in the US that I think could sustain a thousand foot tower, and it looks like the NIMBY powers are waning. The stigma of supertalls is gone - people are excited at a national level about FS(or CS now) and the new WTC. Developers take note of this. Nashville, now Boston, and possibly St Louis, Miami and SF. I'm hoping for an intesting decade.

It's Sting. So What?
32,693 Posts
From that render, I dont like it. If I see others then maybe I'll change my mind but the only thing special about this is the height.

2,713 Posts
Beautiful tower! Crispy needs to be brigged.

778 Posts
Piano Tower Would Give Boston a Lift
Sunday, November 19, 2006 1:54 PM EST
The Associated Press

BOSTON (AP) — Finally, things are looking up — 1,000 feet and 75 stories up — in this history-rich city where colonial era church steeples are prized over skyscrapers, and the skyline's few tall buildings are largely conservative in design.

Boston businessman Steve Belkin's proposed glass-and-steel tower would top the city's current tallest building by more than 200 feet and 15 stories, reflecting a resurgence in the downtown commercial real estate market, observers say.

"I think it's going to make a lot of our other buildings look very boring, quite honestly," said Frank Nelson, a Boston-based executive director with the commercial real estate services firm Cushman & Wakefield. "We need it."

The design by renowned Italian architect Renzo Piano emerged last week in response to Mayor Thomas Menino's call in February for private development proposals to replace an aging city-owned parking garage in the heart of the Financial District.

Officials in Boston and other U.S. cities typically seek to rein in developers' wishes to build high above neighboring office buildings, but the sky was the limit for Menino. He encouraged a bold architectural statement to surpass the John Hancock Tower, which for three decades has stood as New England's tallest building at 60 stories and 792 feet.

The Hancock anchors Boston's Back Bay section along with the 42-year-old, 52-story Prudential Tower.

In the nearby Financial District — home to the likes of Fidelity Investments and State Street Corp. — most tall buildings top out at around 40 stories. The last time a new Boston building of more 40 stories went up was in 1987, with the completion of the 46-story One International Place.

In a city that has managed to save historic structures such as King's Chapel and the Old Statehouse from overshadowing high-rises, reluctance to build high runs deep. A state law restricts new buildings that would cast a shadow on Boston Common, and past proposals to build 50 stories or higher in the Financial District have failed to secure city approvals.

"We are an old city that is not that tall, so we take a look at each and project and make sure it is appropriate," said Susan Elsbree, a spokeswoman for the Boston Redevelopment Authority, the city agency that will review Belkin's proposal.

So when Menino called for a project taller than any the city had seen before, the mayor and others hoped several developers would respond by last Monday's design-submission deadline, leading to a competitive selection process.

But in the end, there was just the proposal from Belkin, the founder of credit card and travel companies, and part owner of two Atlanta pro sports teams, the Hawks and Thrashers.

However, real estate officials say Menino's failure to bring in more than one development proposal is not an indication that the downtown commercial real estate market has failed to break out of a five-year slump.

They say the office building market is starting to catch up with recent booming residential growth in high-rise downtown condominiums. They cite the Boston office market's vacancy rate of 8.2 percent in this year's third quarter — the lowest in more than four years, according to the commercial real estate firm CB Richard Ellis.

Observers say Belkin was the only developer to come forward because he has an edge over rivals to make the most of the hemmed-in Winthrop Square development site, where the skyscraper would replace the parking garage on Federal Street.

Because Belkin already owns a mid-rise building adjoining the oddly shaped site, he could expand his skyscraper to the space occupied by his existing building, which could be torn down.

"He really had the edge coming in," said David Begelfer, chief executive of the Massachusetts chapter of the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties. "The space issue has made it a much more limited opportunity for other developers."

Belkin wants to call his skyscraper Trans National Place, after his company, Trans National Group.

Piano, the project's Italian designer, is a Pritzker Prize-winning architect known for his work on such projects as the Centre Pompidou in Paris and The New York Times Co.'s new headquarters in Times Square.

His Boston design would create 1.3 million square feet of office space, with a mix of retail and restaurant space on lower floors. A 1-acre park would be built at ground level, with more public space on the building's roof.

There is no specific timeline for the project, and the city says it's review process could involve more than one stage before the final building design is approved. But real estate industry officials say they're optimistic the project will be built, given the recent rebound in the downtown office space market.

Don't expect Boston to resemble Manhattan's skyline. The site for Belkin's tower is one of the last prime pieces of real estate available for development in the downtown core, and new projects on the city's South Boston waterfront are height-restricted to provide unobstructed flight paths to nearby Logan International Airport.

"I think the sight for this new building is so prime that it's the last of the great downtown building sites in Boston," said Nelson, of Cushman Wakefield.

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