ZBA Approves Six-Unit Buildings for Bennington Street Project

The Boston Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) voted unanimously Tuesday to approve a six-unit condo development project on Bennington Street.

Owners Joseph and Jason Ruggiero purchased the single-family ranch home at 1225 Bennington St. last July with the intention of razing the property and constructing a four-story, six-unit residential building. The mansard-style victorian home the Ruggieros are planning received praise from the community at a February Orient Heights Neighborhood Council (OHNC) meeting. OHNC members voted in favor of the project 18-12.

At Tuesday’s ZBA meeting Office of Neighborhood Services Liaison Jose Garcia told the board that the Mayor’s Office was in support of the project. City Councilor Lydia Edwards and Rep. Adrian Madaro were also in support of the Ruggieros’ plan.

The ZBA approved variances for Floor Area Ratio, Height, Side Yard, From Yard, Rear Yard and Parking.

The Ruggieros’ plans call for the demolition of the single family home that sits on a 5,000 sq. ft. lot and replace it with the four-story building. Both Joseph and Jason Ruggiero plan to live in the two separate three-bedroom units on the top two-floors of the home while the other four-units will be sold as condos. The other units will all be 995 sq. ft. two bedroom units.

There was some concern over parking but Attorney Jeff Drago, representing the Ruggieros, said the project consists of two off-street parking spaces and the Ruggieros are currently looking to lease additional spaces at the parking lot across Bennington Street from their home.

Another issue that came up was the height of the building. At 39 feet some residents said the building was too tall compared to neighboring homes. However, Joseph Ruggiero said he was conscious of this and the design attempts to soften the height impacts.

As a true mansard building the third floor looks more like the building’s roof and the fourth floor which will consist of the top two units’ master bedrooms and decks are set back so they are not very visible from the street. There is also a four-story commercial building directly across the street and a recent city approved multiunit condo project less than a block away that was approved for four stories.

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