The developers of the Floramo’s Restaurant site will be back before the Planning Board for a hearing at the board’s regular meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 28.
Last summer, the Zoning Board of Appeals approved the variances and special permit for the construction of an 11-story research and development building at the Floramo’s Restaurant site at 213 Everett Avenue.
Next week, the developer of the building, Verdynt, is seeking a determination of whether proposed changes to the plan constitute minor or major changes, and approval of the changes.
According to the public hearing posting, the changes include a reduction in the footprint of the building and a reduction in the number of parking spaces.
However, City Planner John DePriest said the building height and number of stories for the project will not change.
“The proposal included a small lot owned by the City,” DePriest stated. “The City is working on transferring the parcel, but since it will take some time, the applicant has opted to redesign the building by removing that portion that is on the City-owned parcel.”
The 150-foot plus building will include three stories of parking within the building above grade rather than underground because of water table and soil issues.
The project had an estimated construction cost of $267 million when approved by the ZBA, according to Doug Medvetz, the principal from developer Verdynt. He said it will likely take three years before the project is completed and ready for occupancy.
The city administration has voiced its strong support for the project. Former City Manager Thomas Ambrosino said the project is exactly the kind of major commercial development it wants to see in its commercial district and would provide good paying jobs for the community and provide numerous economic benefits for Chelsea..
The project will be the first one that falls under the city’s new community mitigation guidance, and could bring in over $4 million in linkage fees for Chelsea, money that can be used for any number of community improvements, according to city officials.
Part of the original proposal by Verdynt included school science space, a conference room, and a restaurant open to the public on the first floor. The developers have expressed an interest in working with the school district on science initiatives, and possibly bringing the Floramo family back into the ground floor restaurant space.