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City Seeking Proposals for Austin Street Mixed-Use Development

What would you like to see in a potential development at the Newtonville lot?

After several years of studying the space and discussing its potential for development, the city has officially posted a request for proposals (RFP) for a mixed-use development at the Austin Street municipal lot in Newtonville. 

The RFP was issued on Thursday, Feb. 14, according to the RFP document posted on the city's website

The RFP document is located in the .pdf section to the right.

The 1.7-acre lot was deemed as "surplus" by the Board of Aldermen's Real Property & Reuse Committee in December 2010. It currently includes 159 parking spaces, with 121 spaces open to the general public.

After the space was deemed as surplus, the city formed a Joint Advisory Planning Group (JAPG) in March 2011 to study the potential uses for the lot. The group met for three months and eventually put together a report recommending the space be used for a combination of both housing and commercial development.

The JAPG also recommended that if a project is built, at least 85 parking spaces should remain on the site. 

, which paved the way for a potential mixed-use proposal. 

RFP proposals for the Austin Street lot are due in to the city by Thursday, April 25 at 10 a.m., according to the RFP schedule outlined on the city's website. The deadline for design and special permit applications are yet to be determined. 

Are you in favor of a mixed-use development at the Austin Street lot? What would you like to see in a development there? Tell us in the comments section below. 

Rhoda February 19, 2013 at 12:41 PM
Ideally, I'd like to see a small parking lot (30-40 spaces) plus a small mixed-use or commercial building. I'd like to see would be things like hardware, toy, fabric, book, or gift shops (please -- no more banks or fitness centers). I'd love to see something like a "bookstore-cafe" or an old-fashioned country-store that sells everything from hardware to licorice, with maybe a little comfy "tea room" tucked in a corner.
Sam February 19, 2013 at 02:08 PM
Adding "mixed-use buildings" in a time when the schools are overcrowded seems irresponsible. With two fairly new restaurants and the loss of several spaces on Walnut Street, parking is already becoming difficult in Newtonville, and yet the city is seeking proposals for adding more residences. Leave the lot alone!
Newtonite February 19, 2013 at 02:42 PM
People don't use that parking lot when they should. Instead they jockey for parallel spots on Walnut Street, double park in front of CVS, and park half way down Madison Ave. Maybe adding a store front or two would re-align people's perspective of the area.
Sue Skoler February 24, 2013 at 05:02 PM
Parking is becoming increasingly difficult throughout Newton. Many Newton residents would love to support our local businesses, but each village in Newton should have adequate near-by parking for their businesses. I'm with Sam. Don't exacerbate the already difficult parking problems in Newtonville.... Leave the parking lot alone!

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