Park 151 opens in September and offers pre-installed Wifi in the units and common areas, including the building’s gyms and outdoor lounges.
It seems as if every couple of months, there’s an announcement that some new lab space being built in the Boston area, causing the inevitable response from beleaguered renters: “Great, but where will all the people brought in by these lab jobs live?” Here’s at least one answer: a new apartment building in East Cambridge, built in a rising neighborhood that’s already home to several employers in the healthcare and tech realms.
LCOR, a real estate investment, development, and management firm, along with real estate firm DivcoWest recently announced the launch of leasing at Park 151, a 20-story, 468-unit, mixed-income building. David Sigman, executive vice president and principal at LCOR, says the plan is to roll out a full leasing effort in June, but they’ve already signed a few tenants, since people are eager to jump at the chance for new housing in an otherwise packed area.
“We were approached by tenants who either work in the area or live in one of the buildings near us,” Sigman says. “We’re kind of the first new building in East Cambridge in quite awhile. (We’re) seeing some pent-up demand on that part.”
Park 151 will officially open in September. The building offers a mix of three bedroom-to-studio units, with 392 market-rate units, 54 affordable units, and 22 penthouse homes. Located in East Cambridge, it’s just steps away from both the new Lechmere stop and from some big-name tech and healthcare companies’ headquarters. And it’s one of the first residential buildings in Cambridge Crossing, an up-and-coming development headed by DivcoWest, promising 4.5 million square feet commercial, dining, retail, residential, and green space across 43 acres.
In launching this new building, Sigman says they’re introducing the area not just to new housing, but housing designed with the needs of young professionals in mind. Over half of the units in the building are studios, he says, a decision made bearing in mind that many of the younger people drawn to the area want their own space. In keeping up with current job trends, Park 151 will also offer work-from-home spaces within the building, include conference rooms and lounge spaces. And the entire building is wired for Internet access, so you have WiFi whether you work from your bedroom, in a lounge, or by the pool. Plus, residents can cut the cord and rely on their building for Internet, as if offering in-unit washer and dryers wasn’t already enough of a convenient draw.
“We felt in some ways we were competing against the Seaport and other parts of city better established,” Sigman says. “We needed to create something competitive with that kind of product. It’s one of the nicest buildings we’ve ever built. But that was on purpose. It’s meant to stand up against some of the best buildings in Boston.”
Outside the individual units, residents will enjoy a number of amenities, including various outdoor living spaces. There’s a rooftop garden with greenery surrounding a fire pit with built-in seating, while a pool deck comes with a lounge area and grilling and cooking equipment so residents can enjoy a weekend barbecue. And for those interested in getting their steps in close to home, there are also fitness options in the form of an outdoor yoga terrace with an indoor component and a general fitness studio.
Then there’s the other components of the neighborhood. Companies like Philips North America, Cerevel Therapeutics, Bristol Myers Squibb, and Sanofi are all tenants of Cambridge Crossing’s commercial spaces. Meanwhile, the retail offerings include restaurants like The Lexington, with its roof deck and modern American fare and Cafe Beatrice, which offers coffee and pastries. Sigman says Park 151 itself will also have four retail spaces spread across 19,000 square feet within the ground floor of the building, where they’re considering having a café, a pub, a sit down restaurant, and a daycare.
Within Cambridge Crossing, there’s even more retail, with more service-oriented businesses to come, Sigman adds, building to the promise of an already up-and-coming neighborhood. And lest you worry about too much building, the development also maintains dedicated green space, 11 acres of which are adjacent to the new building. There’s also a five-acre stretch with a waterway for concerts and fitness classes, plus a dog park. It’s sort of like they said in The Wizard of Oz: If you go looking for your heart’s desire, you don’t need to go any further than your own backyard.
“It’s a pretty complete environment,” Sigman adds. “You can live and work inside the building. Cambridge Crossing itself has a lot of retail that’s going in, a lot of food service…It’s just a very convenient place to live.”