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Hamilton Street Apartment Building Developer Told To Return To Drawing Board

Project architect Ashraf Ragab describes the apartment building to the Planning Board.

A Kendall Park developer who wants to build a three-story mixed-use residential building on Hamilton Street will have to wait until at least November to see if his project will become reality.

That’s because the Planning Board told representatives of the developer, Mohamed Nassim, that his application had too many gaps for the Board to be able to render a decision.

Nassim, through his company, 789 Hamilton, wants to construct a 25-unit apartment building that would have retail on the first floor.

The retail spaces would be relatively small, the project’s architect, Ashaf Ragab, said. He said there would be a total of less than 3,000 square feet, which would be divided among four spaces.

The second floor would have four 1-bedroom apartments and eight 2-bedroom apartments, while the third floor would have five 1-bedroom apartments and 8 two bedroom apartments, he said.

The apartment sizes would range in size from about 700 square feet to 800 square feet, except for the corner units, which would be about 900 square feet, Ragab said.

Part of the second floor would be a community room for the tenants, he said. There would be space for table games and a kitchenette, he said.

The application started showing signs of trouble when teh discussion focuses on how garbage and recycling would be connected, where bicycle racks would be placed, and where utility rooms would be located.

The Board was concerned that there were no definite plans for any of those items, and that decisions were being made in the moment.

As for utility rooms, Ragab said that the retail spaces could be reduced to make room for them.

Garbage trucks would have to enter the building’s parking lot to collect the garbage, but it was not clear if the trucks would actually fit.

The missing information soon became to much for Board member Robert Thomas.

“We don’t know where the garbage cans are going, we don’t know where the utility rooms are, we don’t know where the bicycle racks are, we don’t know if a garbage truck actually can make a turn in the parking lot … it just seems like there are too many loose ends here,” he said.

Board member Ted Chase agreed.

“I think you tried to stuff a little too much onto the site and now you’re promising away various parts of the site to meet the requests that the board has made, and you may end up with retail space that will be too small to be usable,” he said.

Board vice chairman Charles Brown made it a trio.

“We don’t feel comfortable with the engineering on the fly, the architectural on the fly,” he said. “We would really prefer that you … come back better prepared.”

The next hearing was scheduled for November 2.

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