Rent All site developer working on a revised plan for proposed building on Adams Street in Lower Mills

A rendering of the current proposal for the Rent-All of Boston property in Lower Mills.
Artwork courtesy Spalding & Tougias

After some neighbors expressed concerns after an initial peek into the plan for developing the Rent All of Boston property on Adams Street in Lower Mills, the developer is now working on a revised concept.

The proposal was unveiled at a Dorchester Lower Mills Civic Association meeting and in the Reporter earlier this month by 6M Development’s Bill Caulder. His plan then called for 33 units of condo housing with 29 parking spaces under the building.

Some have suggested in meetings that the plans should involve single-family homes while others have said that the design and size make them feel like they are disappearing in their own neighborhood.

George Deveney, who said he lives on Adams Street and isn’t against a development there, feels like this one might be too big as it stands now.

“I’m not in the camp of it being a single-family home; I’m fine with it being something but 33 units seems like a lot,” he said. “I would love to see what comes out of something not as tall and hopefully that would also mean a more manageable number of units.”

He added that traffic is really one of the biggest concerns, and that the project relies on a trolley that isn’t reliable. “If this is for public transit and bike utopia, I don’t know if we’re there yet,” he said.

Neighbor Joyce Linehan said she looks forward to hearing the entire proposal and added that she’s glad at least that it meets the threshold of including affordable housing.

“I live close to the site, and I am glad it’s not yet another proposal for an eight- or nine-unit building,” she said. “There are a lot of those around. If you build ten units or more in Boston, you are required to build some affordable. So, if someone shows up in your neighborhood asking to build nine units, you should always ask them to build ten.”

In response, Caulder said that he understands the sentiment of it being too big, but he noted that single-family homes aren’t an option. He pointed out that that would be counter to the city and state’s housing production edicts – adding that the site has high walkability, transit, and bike scores.
“Most people I have interfaced with thus far agree and welcome new multifamily housing on the site, but there are a few voices - and always are - that are critical of the proposed development,” he said. “There are some who want development and think the building ‘feels too big’ and so we are working to address this monolithic ‘big’ feel from the street through some reduction of scale in the architecture.”

He said he will continue to reach out to abutters and those in the neighborhood. “A revised concept will be presented to abutters in the coming days to get further feedback, which we welcome,” he said.

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