City Councilor Tito Jackson (Roxbury) tonight joined residents to condemn a developer's plans to replace the Perrin Street house where S.S. Pierce himself once lived with a four-story apartment building with a steeple and an underground garage.
At a meeting with about 20 residents from Perrin, Copeland and Moreland streets, Jackson called the plan for 35 apartments and a 43-space garage at 63 Perrin St., in a neighborhood with numerous 19th-century houses, "absolutely outrageous."
Developer Patrick Hoban had originally had a Jan. 10 hearing scheduled for his plans before the Zoning Board of Appeals, but asked for a six-month deferral to try to reach some accommodation with neighbors.
At a meeting at the Boys and Girls Club, though, residents were not in an accommodating mood, saying the building is simply too big, would result in too much traffic on the narrow Perrin Street and would have little buffer for residents on the back, Copeland Street side of the building.
Hoban did not attend tonight's meeting.
In addition to concerns about the building being too large, residents worried about noise from early morning construction of a garage built into the hillside and about rats that might be dislodged from the site by all the work.
They said it's not their fault if the developer paid more for the property than could be supported by a more modest development and that they worry about the precedent the project could set.
Residents said that after decades of neglect by the outside world, the area around Dudley Square has suddenly become such a hot real-estate market that people now drive around the area in vans during the summer offering residents cash for their houses. One resident said she has a four-inch stack of cards from would-be buyers who just walk up and ring her bell.
And when it's not foreign investors offering cash, it's drug and alcohol rehab programs that think the large houses in the area would be ideal for their residential programs. "Where are the sober houses in West Roxbury?" one resident asked. "In Hyde Park? In Lower Mills?"
Jackson told residents he would advocated for them before the BPDA and the ZBA. And if that doesn't work, he said he would simply call a City Council hearing to demand Hoban explain himself. He pointed to a similar hearing the council called to discuss the affairs of City Realty.