The North End/Waterfront Neighborhood Council (NEWNC) heard from two separate petitioners on Monday evening during their monthly meeting. A petitioner at 120 Salem St. sought to legalize the existing conditions of the building to nine residential units and one commercial space. A petitioner at 230-238 Hanover St. filed for a use of premise permit to change fifteen residential parking spaces into fifteen commercial parking spaces.
120 Salem Street
The request at 120 Salem St. would not require any work to be done. The owner is simply attempting to correct an existing error that designates the building as eight residential units and two storefronts instead of the current condition of the building which has nine residential units and one storefront.
This building is located at the corner of Salem Street and Baldwin Place. The storefront is currently vacant. It was most recently Ivyees “Honey Everything” store and, before that, Pasta e Pomodoro.
A change of occupancy request would correct this issue, which the owner encountered after requesting permits for past renovations. Existing zoning violations include a lack of open space and the lack of an additional parking spot to accomodate the extra residential unit. Because the building is located in a “shopping district,” the first floor residential unit would require a conditional use permit.
There is currently no Zoning Board of Appeals hearing scheduled. Abutters of the building had no issues from the request, noting that the building always only had one storefront to their knowledge.
230-238 Hanover Street
The request at 230-238 Hanover St. would change the use of premises from fifteen residential parking spaces into fifteen commercial parking spaces to allow the owner to continue renting them out. Anticipated violations would include a maneuverability violation since the spaces are tandem parking spots.
Due to the Air Quality Act of 1967, the City of Boston is only allowed a certain amount of commercial spaces, which is currently at its maximum. Attorney Daniel Toscano, representative for Matteo Gallo, stated that there’s a possibility the permit will be denied based on this.
“If there was some off-street parking or on-street parking that was eliminated from the City of Boston, then they would add more commercial parking spots. So right now, we’re in the middle of trying to figure that out,” stated Toscano.
If the permit is approved, renovations would include repaving the lots, remarking the parking spaces, creating an egress, and adding a bollard to prevent cars from parking directly against nearby buildings. Toscano stated the owner would be willing to add structures and signage to increase public safety if necessary.