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Chinatown developer bucks pandemic trend, proposes changing tower under construction from rental apartments to condos

A developer has asked the BPDA for permission to change 148 apartments in its building under construction at Lagrange and Tamworth streets to condos.

Under the proposed change, the Fortis Group of Brooklyn says it would hold onto an additional 22 units and rent those as affordable.

The request is unusual because developers have been fleeing condo construction since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, citing the reluctance of lenders to get involved with condo construction. Last June, for example, Millennium Towers sought permission to build out its Winthrop Square high rise as apartments instead of the originally proposed condos.

Some developers are even seeking to reduce all residential work - last month, a developer proposed turning a residential tower planned for Dorchester into a life-sciences R&D building.

In its "notice of project change," Fortis did not cite a reason for making the switch from apartments to condos. However, it said the change would not mean any new impacts on either the building or the surrounding area.

Fortis added they now expect the building to be ready for occupancy by mid-2022.

47-55 Lagrange St. notice of project change (22.7M PDF).

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... for how long? Remaining skeptical.
I imagine the dingy dark lower floors will be where the affordable units are located because that building couldn’t be anymore squished into that dank hole than it already is.

Cue John Costello for another apoplectic rant.

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Sums you up perfectly.

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There’s only the temp branch of the Chinatown BPL and a couple of cultural orgs in the China Trade Building left of that block. It never really was part of Chinatown anyway. More like the Theater District.

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change 148 condos in its building under construction at Lagrange and Tamworth streets to condos.

Voting closed 3