BRA Approves $63 Million Dorm for Emerson College
By Veronica Grecu, Associate Editor
As the Menino administration is coming to an end, the Boston Redevelopment Authority (BRA) has been busy unloading a number of development projects from its plate before Mayor-elect Marty Walsh and his staff step in on January 2.
One of the projects that were unanimously approved by the BRA during the December 19 meeting is a new residence hall that was proposed by Emerson College back in June. According to the revised Project Notification Form (PNF)—a scaled down version of the original plans submitted last summer, which called for a 260,000-square-foot building with 750 beds and retail space—the student housing project will replace a 24,631-square-foot parcel located at 1 – 3 Boylston Place off Boylston Street in Downtown Boston. The property was purchased by Emerson College in March 2010 for $3.85, according to data from PropertyShark.com. The site contains two red brick buildings slated for demolition or reconfiguration, as required by the design plans. As previously reported by the Boston Business Journal, the development site is located in a popular nightspot in the Cultural District and is currently occupied by a nightclub and two taverns until March 2015.
Estimated to cost $63 million, the LEED Gold Emerson College Boylston Place designed by Elkus Manfredi Architects will provide housing for approximately 407 students in single and double occupancy rooms with shared bathroom facilities. The 18-story building will also include resident assistant rooms and a resident director’s apartment, as well as an entrance lobby, laundry facilities, mail room and other support spaces.
Founded in 1880 as a “school of oratory” by Charles Wesley Emerson, Emerson College is a private university exclusively dedicated to communication and liberal arts. With around 3,500 enrolled students and only four on-campus dormitories—the Piano Row, Little Building and Colonial Building located on Boylston Street and the Paramount Center located at 555 Washington Street— Emerson College has seen a 10 percent increase in applications from 2013 to 2013. The new Emerson College Boylston Place residential hall is expected to address the need of housing space for the university’s growing number of students.
Rendering via the Boston Redevelopment Authority