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The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) and the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) have approved a real estate deal that will leverage private dollars to help pay for improvements to the Hynes Convention Center Station on the Green Line.As part of the agreement, The Peebles Corp. has been given permission to develop commercial and residential property at Parcel 13, which comprises about 54,500 square feet of air rights over the Massachusetts Turnpike and portions of the MBTA Green Line tunnel.Peebles will pay more than $30.5 million in rent to develop the parcel. That money will be used to fund the station accessibility improvements, MassDOT officials said on the agency's blog.
The Hynes Station is the busiest Green Line Station that's not accessible to people with disabilities, MassDOT officials.Peebles will provide space within the air rights building for the new MBTA station entrances and for relocating Green Line electrical equipment, along with project construction management services for the station at no cost to the transit agency.The station work will cost $45.7 million, according to a preliminary estimate."By harnessing the developer’s expertise and the value created by the air rights development, this project gives us the opportunity to address station accessibility and reliability concerns at a critical location sooner than we would be able to otherwise," said MBTA General Manager Frank DePaola.Known as "The Viola," Peebles' proposed project will consist of 390,000 total gross square feet, including 170 residential units, a 60-room hotel, 26,000 square feet of retail space, on-site parking and two public plazas.Permitting and design are expected to begin in 2016, with station improvement construction slated to start by 2019, MassDOT officials said.