Spring St. revamp needed to go with proposed tower

Sky Everett project should kick-start massive remake of blighted area


On its face, the suggestion of a development comprised of a 21 story apartment building with a rooftop restaurant with a big draw and 360 units is, frankly, a miracle waiting to happen.

Even in today’s hot real estate development marketplace in this city, not many would have predicted a many tens of millions of dollars 21 story proposal that boggles the mind.

(Courtesy of Volnay Capital)

The building permit alone for this project would give the city a whopping dump of free cash which is dependent on the total estimated construction cost.

Spring Street is not exactly Park Avenue. It isn’t even Park Avenue in Revere, for that matter.

Spring Street is about as ravaged a piece of squalid urban property that you can find.

Yet today, the land is worth millions.

The project will cost maybe $50 million or more – that is – if the project’s developer Steve Tocco can get the thing permitted by the city of Everett.

Tocco will have no problem doing this. It is actually an on merit ask of the city which the city should approve immediately.

Roof top restaurant at Sky Everett rendering. (Courtesy of Volnay Capital)

On the other hand, it would be to Tocco’s benefit and the city, to discuss how the entire block of urban blighted land could be developed with three to four 21 story buildings and to actually think about building a small neighborhood in that space. This is not a pipe dream. It takes imagination. This requires vision and a sense of design.

The city should try to negotiate strict, strategic timing and development recommendations and stipulations for the entire area rather than to have Tocco’s building standing alone.

The entire area will one day be residential apartment housing.

It pays to invest in distressed land.

No taxes need to be paid. The investment is what matters.

After ten years, developer/owners will begin to pay taxes.

MARCH 4: Corner of Spring and Second Streets, site of proposed Sky Everett tower. (Photo by Jim Mahoney)

That being said, I have some questions about the viability of the 360 proposed apartments on Spring Street surrounded by nothingness.

Who will rent those spaces? Is it a guarantee all the units could be rented?

Where will these residents’ shop or walk?

What will be the draw to live in a 21 story building on Spring Street?

And what of the possible restaurant developers?

Many who claim to know have heard they are basically out of money (although they might be able to raise private funding). although the renderings showing the restaurant at the top of the building are to die for.

Will Tocco end up owning the building if it gets built?

Likely not.

Does it matter? No, it doesn’t.

He will be inclined to sell the package to a real estate developer with deep pockets.

In the end, Tocco will make out like a bandit.

If he can pull it off, he deserves whatever he gets, and the city is left with a major development in return.

I wonder if he’s thought about talking with the mayor about the deal?

Maybe I shouldn’t waste much time wondering about such a thing.

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