It was a project that had widespread support from the Charlestown Neighborhood Council (CNC) but once abutters began complaining they were not involved in the process things went sour.
The Boston Zoning Board of Appeals Tuesday (ZBA) was asked to take a deferral for the project at 40 Warren St. until the community process with abutters is satisfied. The ZBA scheduled another hearing for property owner Vahid Nickpour’s plan to increase the footprint and capacity of the building for Tuesday, January 24 at 11:30 a.m.
Elected officials and the Mayor’s Office were prepared to ask the board to oppose the project until Nickpour met with abutters and address their concerns. Nickpour opted to defer until January and plans to meet with neighbors before the next hearing.
Nickpour plans to add two floors to the three story garage at 40 Warren that would house commercial space and 14 residential units.
Nickpour began the community process last November and pitched the plan to the CNC. There, architect Philip Hresko said that Nickpour planned to use the current garage structure’s first floor as parking and 3,000 sq. ft. of commercial space while the second and third floors would be additional parking and office space. Some of the controversy comes from his plan to add two and a half floors atop the current building with both floors housing seven condo units ranging from 1,347 sq. ft. to 1,960 sq. ft. The plan would also historically renovate the façade of the building.
Because Nickpour needed zoning relief the CNC referred the project to its development committee. Once that committee signed off on the project additional community meetings were held over the year with the CNC ultimately supporting the project.
However, before Tuesday’s ZBA meeting a group of organized abutters began complaining that they were left out of the process. Many of the abutters oppose the project in its size and scope and will now have the opportunity to voice concerns to Nickpour about the project.