Two development companies teamed up today to file preliminary plans for new hotels at the intersection of Beacon Street and Commonwealth Avenue that would house up to 763 rooms in two separate towers.
Mark Development had already floated a proposal to replace a single-story Citizens Bank branch on Comm. Ave. with a hotel. But in a letter of intent filed with the BPDA today, Mark said that in addition to that 24-story, 375-room hotel, it is now teaming up with the Buckminster Annex Corp. to tear down a small office building and garage behind the Buckminster Hotel along Beacon Street to put up a separate 19-story, 388-room hotel.
With a total of roughly an acre of land under consideration, at 560-574 Comm. Ave. and 655-665 Beacon St., the companies would seek BPDA designation of a "planned development area" with its own zoning rules for the dual project.
In its letter, the companies explained the benefits the city would see from letting the hotels go up:
Kenmore Square is a lively hub for education, hospitality, dining and living and it is the main entry point to Fenway Park, Boston's most famous sports venue. The Proposed Project will redevelop the remaining underutlized parcels at the western edge of the Square, transforming them by building modern, high-rise hotels that flank and define this important public space. The Proposed Project will create additional, badly needed Boston hotel rooms at a range of price points, supporting the nearby Back Bay business district, the Longwood Medical Area and area attractions. It will further provide for appropriate ground-floor and streetscape improvements to better knit together this complex intersection, in which cars dominate despite heavy pedestrian use.
The letter signals the companies' intent to file a more detailed project-notification form this summer, along with proposed zoning for the lots.