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New developer wants to revive plans for apartment building at Dorchester Avenue and B Street in South Boston

Rendering of 270 Dorchester Ave.

Rendering by Embarc.

A developer who bought a vacant lot at Dorchester Avenue and B Street last year is asking the BPDA to sign off on plans to build a six-story, 114-unit apartment building there.

In a notice of project change, current owner Huabin Fan of Wellesley says he would keep roughly the same plans as approved by the BPDA in 2017 and then again in 2019, but that, in keeping with changing times - and changing city requirements - he is proposing just 20 parking spaces, down from the original 70, and a building that would have no natural-gas hookups.

Also, he would shrink the number of studios by increasing the number of one-bedroom units - each of which would have an installed desk - because of the growing number of people who now work at home.

The plans call for 20 of the units to be rented as affordable. Ground-floor commercial space would be rented at below-market rates to the non-profit Ultimate Self Defense and Performance Center.

An earlier developer first signaled plans to build on the property in 2015, with a 120-space garage - 50 spaces to be used by a car-rental company. The BPDA approved the plans in 2017, then approved changing the originally proposed apartments to condos in 2019. After that, the developer demolished the existing buildings on the site, and began excavation and installation of steel sheet piles, but had to stop work due to Boston's pandemic ban on construction in 2020.

In May, 2022, a potential site buyer filed for BPDA approval to resume the project, then abandoned the proposal.

In June, 2022, Fan purchased the roughly half-acre site for roughly $10.8 million.

270 Dorchester Ave. filings.



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Build it

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And then build 100 more!

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if there is a recommended website or a place to go for information on renting an apartment at one of the so many residential buildings being built all over the city?

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Sign up to be notified of new lotteries, BPDA has information here: http://www.bostonplans.org/housing/finding-housing/more-housing-resources

If you are a BPDA certified artist, work live space is also available, those resources are at: http://www.bostonplans.org/housing/artist-live-work-program/artist-live-...

Maloney Properties maintains a pretty good list of lotteries based on income levels in a number of cities and handles a lot of affordable unit resales: https://www.maloneyaffordable.com/

Unfortunately it appears there are no current active lotteries or resales with Maloney, but you must be relentless and apply to every lottery there is. I applied for countless buildings, but after three years of trying, my lottery # came up as #2 and I was offered a one bedroom at an incredibly inexpensive price. There are a lot of rules: The property appreciates at a fixed 3% compounded annually, you can’t rent it out you have to live in it, your property taxes are greatly reduced based on the affordability factor. If you sell in the first 50 years of ownership, the BPDA tells you how much you can sell it for, and the new buyer has to qualify using the same income/asset guidelines that I met the criteria for, albeit adjusted for the current economic conditions. (for example, if I want to sell my unit tomorrow, the buyer(s) cannot make more than the 2023 100% AMI of $103,000 and excluding retirement assets, have assets of more than $100k.)

The income certification process once chosen was a total nail biter, but I was cleared to buy in 2017.

And yes, I was very lucky.

And no, in answer to a question I am asked frequently, I don’t think the lottery process is fixed, but you’re competing with hundreds of other applicants. As the old saying goes, people really do win, but it’s a tiny fraction of the applicants. Apply, apply, apply!

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