Housing comes to Sullivan Square

A mixed-use building with 171 apartments, 2500 square feet of commercial space and 114 parking spaces has been proposed for 32 Cambridge St in Charlestown. The site is within spitting distance of Sullivan Square, its Orange Line station and its two busways. According to the filing developer Berkeley Investments made with the Boston Redevelopment Authority, one existing building on the site will be demolished and another renovated. Twenty three of the units will be affordable.

32 Cambridge St

A view of the new construction on Rutherford Avenue.

According to the filing documents, the residences will be a mixture of studios, lofts and one-bedroom units in the renovated builing and studios, one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments in the new building. Some of the parking will be on the surface and some will be in a semi-underground garage and bicycle storage will also be provided.

The development would play into the BRA’s plans to promote greater pedestrian connections from Sullivan Square to the residential parts of Charlestown. The site is extremely transit-oriented, however, there will be difficulties that planned streetscape improvements can only do so much to alleviate. Rutherford Avenue is a very wide road likely to discourage trips to Charlestown proper. Similarly, it would be possible to walk to the Super Stop and Shop on McGrath Highway in Somerville, but the width of Broadway might discourage some.

As an Article 80 Large Project Review, the filing included a traffic study done by Howard Stein Hudson, which reports that a great deal of change is coming to the area. Not only are there other development projects, but as part of the mitigation agreement Wynn Casinos made with the City of Boston, a number of streets will be reconfigured and the Sullivan Square rotarty may be removed entirely.

The result is that the study concluded that the project would make no difference to the traffic flow if it were built or not.


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