The proposal by Joel DeLuca to tear down a former automotive storage facility at 29-30 Geneva St. and replace it with six-story, 32-unit condo development has some longtime Geneva Street residents welcoming the proposal as something that may start a rebirth on the long-neglected street.. The 8,000 sq. ft. lot would also include 15 parking spaces as part of the proposal.
Attorney for DeLuca, Jeff Drago, said Geneva Street is basically a blank canvas that needs some attention. Historically the unpaved Geneva, which connects Gove Street to Maverick Street, has been dotted with auto repair shops, auto storage facilities and a few homes.
Those who live on the street agreed with Drago and want to see more developers take interest in the street.
“There’s nothing down here,” said one resident at the meeting. “I’m an abutter to this project, and the street has been a dump for as long as I can remember. I am for anything they can do to make this street look better because honestly it can’t be any worse than it is now. There are no sidewalks and no street.”
Drago said already one developer has begun a project on the street and another of Drago’s clients received approval for a nine-unit development on the corner of Gove and Geneva St.
“As more and more parcels are developed on this street the better the street will look,” said Drago. “We are proposing new sidewalks, and as more projects come on line ,the sidewalks will be extended and eventually the street will be paved.”
DeLuca is proposing a mix of studio, one, two and three-bedroom units.
According to Drago he will need zoning for floor area ratio, height, open space, front and rear year as well as parking.
“Geneva Street is really a unique area that is starting to get some attention,” said Drago at the meeting. “This project will play off some of the other projects that are coming along on the street.”
At the first meeting regarding the proposal, some Gove Street Citizens Association members were wary of another large-scale development with one member commenting that the group has seen enough six-story proposals and didn’t like the modern design.