Wednesday, December 16, 2009

MIT Town/Gown Report Released

MIT has just released the 2009 Town/Gown Report, which quantifies the Institute's impact on C-port and the city, and publicizes future plans for development. It's an interesting read for those curious about MIT's ever-important role in our neigbhorhood (it's also an excuse for me to try out the PDF portal in the blog). The map on page 29 is helpful for those of us who are always curious about what properties the Institute owns (and does not own).

Some of the highlights...

Impact on the city:

  • MIT owns 5.1 million square feet of taxable commercial space and 175 taxable residential units in Cambridge (compared to about 11 million non-taxable square feet of space in academic, dormitory and student activities buildings)
  • MIT taxable properties generate $31.2 million in Real Estate Taxes for the City, with an additional $7.4 million in other contributions, fees, etc. This makes up about 12% of the City's annual budget
  • There are about 1700 students residing off-campus in non-MIT (private) housing, a number that has decreased as about 200 additional students have been accommodated in "Institute-approved" (dorms, fraternities, etc) in the past year

Recent and Future Development:

  • 350 additional bike parking spaces have been added, as well as bike "repair stations" with air and minor tools--one at the student center across from Lobby 7 on Mass Ave
  • MIT and the CSX railroad company are working on creating a safe pedestrian crossing of the railroad tracks at Pacific Street, creating a better connection between C-port and the western half of campus
  • The cluster of parking lots at the western end of campus (near Ft Washington) are being viewed increasingly as an opportunity to develop new buildings to house administrative uses (that don't need to be as close to the heart of the academic campus). The potential future Urban Ring stop would make this an even more attractive option for the Institute to create transit-oriented development focused on office uses
  • Though there are no immediate plans, the Institute is studying the parking lots along Mass Ave, Albany Street and Vassar Street for development, including the necessary active ground floor uses that would need to be incorporated into future buildings
  • As mentioned here before, MIT is permitting a few projects in anticipation of an rebound in the commercial real estate market, and hopes to start (re)development work when primary tenants are identified. These include 130 Brookline Street and 640 Memorial Drive.

See the full report below...


No comments: