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Sep 15, 2017

Developer Seeks to Build 865 Housing Units in Upper Falls

Banker & Tradesman
September 15, 2017
By Steve Adams

Northland Investment Corp. has unveiled its plans for a 1.4-million-square-foot redevelopment including 865 housing units at a 29-acre parcel in Newton’s Upper Falls.

The 172,000-square-foot former Clarks Americas shoe company offices would be expanded into 372,000 square feet of commercial space, according to documents submitted to state environmental regulators. 20 percent of the residences would be restricted as affordable housing.

“The project presents a unique opportunity for smart growth in the spirit and tradition of Newton’s historic village centers,” according to the submission by Newton-based Northland.

The development site consists of five parcels at Oak and Needham Streets acquired by Northland over the past decade, including the Oak Street converted mill complex. Clarks relocated last year to a build-to-suit headquarters at a former Polaroid building on Main Street in Waltham.

A Northland executive told Banker & Tradesman that the company hopes to attract small and mid-sized office tenants with open format brick-and-beam workspaces. Retail and restaurant space would be built in a Main Street format in the center of the site, with residences on the upper floors.

Building heights would range up to 95 feet and the redevelopment would be served by 2,250 parking spaces including on-street, surface and parking garages.

Northland said its approach supports the Newton-Needham (N-Squared) Innovation District’s goals of boosting suburban job creation. The program is a partnership between the two communities, Newton-Needham Regional Chamber and local businesses seeking to revitalize 500 acres of commercial properties near Route 128.

Northland’s plans require rezoning the five parcels from the existing mixed-use 1 district to business 4.


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