The Globe is reporting that developers in our Greater Boston Area who build projects near the T are more frequently being asked to fund T service and this practice has been going on for years. The article cites upgrades to North and Back Bay stations were funded by Boston Properties (who were permitted the right to build towers on top of them) and Boston Landing and Assembly Row as examples of funding the MBTA. Recently, agreements have been reached where developers will be paying for extra T service on the Orange Line.
“Developers routinely tout their projects’ closeness to the T in marketing materials, and rents are often higher in buildings with easy access to transit. In many cities and towns around the region, builders can get a break on costly requirements to build parking spaces if they can demonstrate that many residents and workers in their buildings will commute by train.
“Transit-oriented development not only adds people to transit but also generally benefits from the system as a whole,” said Marc Draisen, executive director at Metropolitan Area Planning Council. “It seems legitimate that they should kick in some money to help it.”
Although we did get $700K in mitigation funds from Washington Place – see Administration’s memo on recommended spending of these funds – should we be demanding more?