Community Real Estate Transportation

Another “What Could Have Been” Concept for the North End Waterfront at Sargent’s Wharf

Coming off the post of a Miami towers concept at Lewis Wharf, here is another drawing board plan for Sargent’s Wharf on Commercial Street. Developed in the 1990’s, this greenspace concept with a small residential housing component never happened. The waterfront space remains mostly a parking lot with a surrounding Harborwalk and small public area with benches at the water’s edge.

Current Sargent’s Wharf Parking (NEWF Photo)

Sargent’s Wharf is 2.2 acres and owned by the Boston Redevelopment Authority that leases out the space for parking use. The design by Rauhaus Freedenfeld and Associates was funded by a coalition of local residents combining a public recreational space and marina above a 155 car underground garage with a restaurant pavilion, pedestrian promenade and ferry-boat dock. Scaling of an included 52 unit apartment building was in line with the historic Pilot House.

See the Sargent’s Wharf before and after renderings.

1988 Sargent’s Wharf plan for affordable housing (BPL)

Back in the 1980’s, the North End / Waterfront Neighborhood Council and Boston Redevelopment Authority coordinated to plan an affordable housing development on Sargent’s Wharf. The BRA created a “developer’s kit” Request for Proposal that can be found online. The general configuration of the affordable housing buildings is shown here. The lack of outside funding, public or private, caused that plan to die as well.

So, are there any current plans to develop Sargent’s Wharf? A new parking company, LAZ, has recently renewed their lease at the property at least in the short-term. At a March 2013 meeting on waterfront zoning, the Boston Redevelopment Authority said there are currently no plans to develop Sargent’s Wharf.  (See the 58:00 minute mark in this video post.)

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