Builder presents ideas to replace Simmons residential campus with offices, residences, stores and, of course, life science labs

Skanska USA has filed preliminary plans with BPDA for the proposed six-acre, four-building mixed-use complex it plans to build with Simmons University off Brookline Avenue as the school moves its current dormitories to a new space on its main campus a few blocks away.

The proposed project will include approximately 2.3 acres of open public space and up to 1.75 million gross square feet of mixed-use development spread over four buildings, including residential spaces, community spaces, retail , laboratories / offices and ancillary parking. …

Overall, the development of the proposed project aims to create a dynamic core of innovative workspaces, active community amenities and additional housing and public domain in the [Longwood Medical Area]. It will reinvigorate a long, dormant stretch of Brookline Avenue with retail, outdoor and indoor public spaces, improvements to the streetscape, wider sidewalks and accessibility for bicycles, as well as improved circulation for all. modes of travel in the neighborhood. The indoor and outdoor public spaces on offer are designed with a blend of passive and active programming in mind that are intended to be welcoming to all Fenway / LMA neighborhoods and beyond. It will draw people to, in and through the site, forge a better connection with the Emerald Necklace, develop existing relationships with neighboring institutions and add more cohesion to the site and the surrounding context.

Also available: Underground parking for 1,039 cars.

The descriptions come from the “planned development zone” proposal filed with the agency. This document specifies the total amounts of development and offers rough ideas on what the new complex would look like. Under a PDA, the developer and BPDA essentially reject the underlying zoning of a site and come to an agreement on what can be built.

The developer will still need to file a “project notification form” which gives more detailed specifications for buildings, parks and other parts of the project.

Skanska says he would build the new complex over a 10- to 15-year period, as Simmons makes separate plans for a 21-story “living and learning center” on his campus next to the Boston Latin School from avenue Louis Pasteur and du Fenway.

305 Brookline Ave.


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