BPDA to host meetings on General Heath Apartments proposal

The Boston Planning and Development Agency (BPDA) will host back-to-back public meetings on the General Heath Square Apartments project on Oct. 17 at the Julia Martin House at 90 Bickford St. The proposed project will sit on the border of Mission Hill and Jamaica Plain

From 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., BPDA will hold an impact advisory group (IAG) meeting on the project. Following that meeting, a general public meeting will be held.

The General Heath Square Apartments proposal was approved by the then Boston Redevelopment Authority in 2015. The apartments will be built on City-owned land formed by the triangle of Heath, New Heath, and Bromley streets, and is expected to created 42 construction jobs. The Jamaica Plain Neighborhood Development Corporation (JPNDC), a community development corporation, is partnering with Back of the Hill Community Development Corporation (BOTH CDC) for the project.

The plan originally called for 47 affordable units—a mix of one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments—in a four-story, 56,000-square-foot building with 2,000 square feet of community and office space.

“There have been some slight design changes to the project as a result of the ongoing design review with DND, and that will be the basis of the update,” said BPDA spokesperson Bonnie McGilpin. “The JPNDC also felt they owed the neighborhood an update on project timeline given that there had not been much happening over the last year (JPNDC was working behind the scenes on all of its funding, design review, etc. but the neighbors may not have known that). It is intended to be a courtesy update and discussion of any lingering questions relative to the project.”

BOTH CDC and JPNDC previously co-developed the Back of the Hill housing. The team entered the sole bid for the City-owned land after the Department of Neighborhood Development (DND) held three community meetings and a site tour to discuss development options.

The parcels in question total almost 29,000 square feet. The City acquired them through tax foreclosures and is planning their development as the last stage of the 15-year-old Heath Street Planning Initiative.


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