Roche Bros. set to expand to Brighton Center

Proposed Parsons Crossing Building in Brighton Center

Architect's rendering.

Officials say that Roche Bros. wants to put one of its new breed of small supermarkets in the proposed Parsons Crossing mixed-use development at Washington and Parsons streets.

Word of the chain's letter of intent came at a BRA neighborhood meeting on the proposal, which would also include 54 residential units and 125 parking spaces - 40 in a street-level lot intended for the supermarket and other retail space in the building.

Traffic, as is the fashion these days, proved the most contentious issues, with residents worrying the new residents will only exacerbate Washington Street's traffic woes.

Parsons Crossing filings with the BRA.

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Comments

please make it happen!

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I live close to this area and I really like this proposal. A real grocery store that is within WALKING distance of thousands of residents might actually incentivize people to walk more. As far as traffic goes, it is already so bad along Washington st, that i think it actually needs to get worse before it gets better. In order for the residents to get serious about building real biking infrastructure and properly investing in the MBTA, we need to reach a level of density that matches NYC. Brighton is still very suburban and this would move it in the right urban direction.

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Voting is closed. 51

The city doesn't need the

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The city doesn't need the extreme density like you are talking about, that would just create more congestion without solving anything. Having suburban areas is good for a city. Just make the transit better for the given demand.

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Voting is closed. 39

There Is Nothing Good About Suburban Areas

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You do realize we have a housing shortage, and an even worse affordable housing [not the program but actual middle class housing] shortage, whose only cure is to increase density in ALL neighborhoods. This is particularly true in Brighton as it is [mostly] within walking distance of trains. You are right that the 57/A line needs to be bolstered, but it's cart and horse there. The MBTA is not going to improve anything unless the number of users increase.

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Voting is closed. 42

You do realize that though

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You do realize that though there is a housing shortage, that does not mean you must build wherever it's possible or without planning for traffic and congestion?

You won't solve the housing problem by building, because there's no limits on the amount of investment real estate people can buy. That's a simplistic argument.

Increasing density in all neighborhoods would also create much greater transit problems.

"There Is Nothing Good About Suburban Areas "

There's plenty good about them, considering many people will happily live there. You may have your own specific notions on what a city must look like,

"The MBTA is not going to improve anything unless the number of users increase."

When you increase the ridership, you make the cost and demands of improvement even greater.

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Voting is closed. 32

You do realize that demand

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You do realize that demand for housing does not obviate the need for planning and traffic and transit considerations? You won't solve the housing problem simply by building since there's no limitations on the amount of investment real estate people can buy, the issue is more complicated than that. This is a large reason why there is less middle class housing.

"There Is Nothing Good About Suburban Areas "

Just because you don't like them doesn't mean there's anything wrong with them. Neighborhoods don't need to be completely changed just because you think people should build without much planning.

"The MBTA is not going to improve anything unless the number of users increase."

That is not a sustainable method for improving transit. By increasing the usage you also increase the amount by which it needs to improve.

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Voting is closed. 22

You don't decide that.

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And you aren't going to be able to build enough housing without buying restrictions. Nor do existing neighborhoods need to change just because you believe they should be different.

By increasing density as much as you want, you create even larger transit problems.

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Voting is closed. 21

"You do realize we have a

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"You do realize we have a housing shortage, and an even worse affordable housing [not the program but actual middle class housing] shortage, whose only cure is to increase density in ALL neighborhoods."

The supply and demand doesn't work that way in the market. By adding more construction, you create additional demand from outside the region in addition to the demand that is already there.

" This is particularly true in Brighton as it is [mostly] within walking distance of trains."

Then convince more people to use them rather, than increasing congestion across all types of transit through your unrealistic notion of vastly increasing housing density any time soon.

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Voting is closed. 26

Building more luxury condos

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Building more luxury condos and apartments that are largely unaffordable to most isn't going to help either way. Does anyone know what the market value of these apartments will be? I understand that it is not profitable to build reasonably priced housing, but in my humble opinion it is a waste of space to make buildings that people won't move into.

Take the condos at the corner of Western and North Harvard for example. It is still mostly vacant it seems. While it does not affect traffic because hardly anyone lives there, it also does nothing to alleviate the housing crisis (and personally, I hate looking at it) and I feel like this is what is going on throughout the city.

You know what, I got a bit off track. I think my problem lies with the ugliness of all of these buildings and the fact that I feel like I'm being pushed out of my neighborhood for some "greater" cause.

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Voting is closed. 22

Vacancy rates in a lot of the

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Vacancy rates in a lot of the luxury buildings are still pretty low, though. The good news is that for some of them, there are higher vacancy rates, which means eventually the developer will need to lower rent to fill rooms. Someone on the Boston subreddit who lives in the Troy said their vacancy rate is like 20% and as a result a lot of the existing residents plan on negotiating lower rent or a free month when renewing their lease.

What a lot of people forget is today's low/midrange apartment buildings were luxury apts in the 80s

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Voting is closed. 23

Let's hope that proves to be

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Let's hope that proves to be true!

But it doesn't change the fact that those old buildings from the 80's are ugly and the ones being built today are not much better. Throwing a bunch of plate glass windows and granite counter tops in a sterile and boring apartment doesn't seem all that luxurious to me. Or maybe my taste is incredibly old fashioned and tacky.

I'm getting ahead of myself again. I don't know what the inside of this building will look like. What was this thread about?

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Voting is closed. 19

I agree they're ugly and that

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I agree they're ugly and that the term 'luxury' describes the price point and pretty much nothing else about them.

But in 10-20 years when they're no longer shiny new and banking on people who want to live in new buildings, and competing with fresh 'luxury', their prices will go down and the supply will open up to regular people.

Fighting demand induced pricing with supply works, it just takes longer than the 3-4 years the city's been actively building

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Voting is closed. 20

The MBTA is not going to

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The MBTA is not going to improve anything unless the number of users increase.

FTFY.

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Voting is closed. 21

You couldn't be more wrong if you tried

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In the book "Walkable City" by Jeff Speck, he explains why density and walkability makes everyone healthier and happier. The suburbs are toxic. People THINK this is what they want, but it really isn't.

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Voting is closed. 30

It really *is* what they want

People THINK this is what they want, but it really isn't.

For almost everybody out in the burbs, it definitely is what they want. Calling suburbs 'toxic' is really pegging the drama scale.

I get it, you don't like the burbs. That's fine, I understand, people are different. But please don't think you're right and people in the burbs are wrong.

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Voting is closed. 31

Eh

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The suburbs are toxic. People THINK this is what they want, but it really isn't.

Well...I think there are a lot of inherent problems with suburbs, I could write a book, and I'm sure you and I could have an interesting conversation about it. But to say that "density and walkability makes everyone healthier and happier" strikes me as simplistic bosh. People need open spaces and green spaces, and human beings need things like air, clean water, food and so on that you can't get from a built-up environment. Again, you and I would probably agree that the classic suburb is not the best solution for the human need for open/green spaces, and we'd probably agree on why, too -- and I admit that I haven't read Speck's book, either, but I hope if his ideas are valid, you could explain his points a bit better.

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Voting is closed. 23

That doesn't change that the

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That doesn't change that the suburban areas already exist. You also don't address the fact that the current infrastructure isn't really set up or easily improved for vastly greater amounts of density.

Also, a lot of people live in the city for a while then move back to the suburbs after they get bored with the city.

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Voting is closed. 23

Boston Chain Grocery

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Boston Chain Grocery Locations, 1955-1974

http://www.groceteria.com/place/massachusetts/boston/boston-chain-grocer...

Fun Fact : Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company (A&P)

3-5 Fitchburg Street, aka Brickbottom Artist Building. The multi-building commercial
complex,was built from 1920 -1923 to serve as a distribution center for the food products of the
Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company (A&P) supermarket chain. Three of the four original
4
early 1920s A & P buildings are still extant. The complex was designed to keep up with the
demand for food products sold at the A&P's far-flung stores. The grocery warehouse provided
space for the temporary storage and canning of food products. Baked goods were produced as
well as stored within the bakery. To insure that the goods were delivered as expeditiously as
possible to the Company's stores, an auto repair shop for trucks was constructed on the northeast
side of this distribution center.
The construction of the A&P complex at the margins of the Brick Bottom neighborhood during
the early 1920s represents an important late development in the history of Somerville's
southeastern industrial/commercial zone.
In 1984, a group of artists came together, in search of a stable
and affordable working and living environment. They
eventually purchased the semi-abandoned buildings of the
A&P complex at 1 Fitchburg Street. The Brickbottom Artist
Association has become a well-known model for other artists'
live/work developments throughout the country. Today, the
nearly 150 condominium spaces, each of a unique size, shape
and design, serve as both home and workspace to BAA
member artists and non-artists alike.

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Voting is closed. 21

Will convenience outweigh traffic concerns?

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While I would love to see a small grocers come back to the neighborhood (used to be Flanagans in the CVS area) especially for our elderly non-driving residents, I worry about the increased traffic congestion on Washington street. Getting through Brighton center from west to east on Washington can be a nightmare.

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Voting is closed. 27

The unfortunate thing about

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The unfortunate thing about buildings in the outer neighborhoods is there isn't enough money for high quality renderings. This means, it is hard to tell if a building is crappy or if it just has a crappy rendering. Oddly, the lost art of hand drawings was much cheaper for high quality results.

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Voting is closed. 23

Two renderings for $10K

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This seems just plain wrong. I'm now wrapping up participation in a $17MM restoration/construction project that used two high quality, watercolor hand renderings at a cost of $10K.

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Voting is closed. 23

I have stared at this for

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I have stared at this for about 20 minutes and I have mixed feelings. I think the idea of a small scale grocery store is great, assuming it will be like the one that took over the Staples in Allston and have lots of fresh made food and the like.

The downside is ... that intersection IS terrible. I have nearly been hit on a bike or on foot, or the a number of times there. Having lived in/around Brighton for 7 years now I know how to avoid it as much as possible, but ... yea I get why people raised traffic concerns. ( don't worry about people who live there parking there cares or the usual nonsense, but I am worried about traffic getting in and out of the parking lot.

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Voting is closed. 14

Traffic lights?

Maybe they'll put up lights at that intersection? It sucks getting stuck trying to turn off of Parsons, only to have a line of MarkKs not let you in.

Also, is the Merchantile Commerce Bank still there? I should know, as I have a seldom used account there, but I don't... (heads off to findmassmoney.com)

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Voting is closed. 21

Pike Conduit

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If you want to solve the traffic problem on Washington, take down the toll at Allston. So many people use the Newton exit to bypass the toll at Allston. The timing of sitting in Brighton traffic versus Pike traffic is about the same so they save $1.50 a trip. Brighton residents are smart enough to use lots of the side streets and other corridors to move around.

In addition during commuter hours, you could remove a lot of the parking on Washington and make it a bike/bus lane. Quite a few express buses it to get to/from the Pike as well and the 57 is a high volume line too.

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Voting is closed. 29

What need does it serve?

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As someone who will be able to take advantage of this, I'm a fan, personally. Given the average Roche Brothers prices, though, I'm not sure it's a great solution for the neighborhood's supermarket need. They have a nice selection of products, but it's a pretty spendy place, and there's a Stop & Shop not far away.

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Voting is closed. 16

It does serve a need in

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It does serve a need in Brighton. I cannot walk to Stop and Shop, but could walk to the Brighton Center grocery store. The CVS was a grocery store for many years and I have missed that since they closed.

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Voting is closed. 18

Just say no!

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Regarding Roche Brothers Supermarket! .I am going to have petitions to sign if you agree that Roche Brothers should not take over Brighton Center. AS a lifelong resident who believes in COMMUNITY FIRST. I don't want to see a hard working small shop like Johnny D's who worked his ass off and helps local charities lose his business, because he is also a lifelong resident. I don't want to see my friend at Jim's Deli or Palace Spa watch their businesses suffer either!

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What are you on about?

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Odd, my content went missing. Basically I don't think any of the things you mentioned are going to compete with Roche Bros for customers.

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Location