Friday, June 11, 2010

Chestnut Hill Phoenix

Ugly, vacant buildings, Newton, MA

From Dave Brigham:

This site in the Chestnut Hill section of Newton, Mass., has been a mess for years, since a major fire wiped out several buildings and took a handful of lives.

New England Development Co. initiated plans three years ago, before the real estate and economic collapse, to erect a major project here, comprising residential, retail and office space. The company's plans have been on hold, but recently reps outlined scaled-back ideas, including a new grocery store, an eight-story residential building (instead of the original 14-story edifice), about 100,000 square feet of retail/restaurant space and room for a health club and medical offices. With the economy looking up, N.E. Development hopes to break ground early next year, according to an article in the Newton Tab.

Former Omni supermarket, Newton, MA

While there's no doubt this site needs to be developed, and I'll likely end up shopping at the grocery store or other retailers that land there, I'll miss the carnival that's been held in the barren parking lot the past few summers. For more on the demise of venues featuring roller coasters, games of chance and fried dough, see June 1, 2010, Backside feature, "The Ones That Got Away, Part II."

Dilapidated buildings, Newton, MA

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