Kendall Square Redevelopment Overview
Kendall Square is the center of Cambridge's innovation economy and continues to evolve rapidly. The district is becoming more active and mixed-use, with growing ground floor retail, streetscape improvements, redeveloped open spaces and new residential buildings and office/R&D space. The CRA has been instrumental in the transformation of Kendall Square since the 1960's when the CRA and City of Cambridge adopted the Kendall Square Urban Renewal Plan.
Kendall Square Urban Renewal Plan
The KSURP guided the CRA to transform 42-acres of urban blight into vacant land suitable for development. Using the tools of a redevelopment authority granted through the Massachusetts State Legislature's Chapter 121B, the CRA acquired land, relocated businesses and roadways, demolished buildings, and made public infrastructure improvements. In 1978, the CRA approved Boston Properties as the Developer of the KSURP area. Through development agreements (Parcel 2 & Parcels 3 & 4) between Boston Properties and the CRA, construction of the first new buildings in Kendall began. Click here for more details on the history of Kendall Square's redevelopment.
Since 1965, the KSURP plan has been amended a number of times by the Cambridge City Council and CRA Board. The most recent major amendment to the plan was passed on December 21st, 2015. The KSURP Amendement 10 provides for 4 million square feet of mixed-use development, accommodating office and biotech labs, hotel, residential, retail and open space.
Infill Development Concept Plan (IDCP)
In February of 2017, The CRA Board and Planning Board approved a new Infill Development Concept Plan (IDCP) for the MXD District of the Kendall Square Urban Renewal Plan (KSURP).
The IDCP is a concept plan required to be created and approved by the CRA and City, as a result of the major KSURP Amendment 10 passed 2015. The concept plan was informed by the K2 planning process, and details the urban design, circulation, and open space of the new development in the MXD District. IDCP documents can be found here, and will be completed in three phases.
Phase One will include the completion of Ames Street Redevelopment including construction of The Proto residential tower and Pioneer Pedestrian Way, 145 Broadway which will be the new Akamai headquarters, and creation of Innovation Space at 255 Main Street. Open space enhancements will include improvements to the existing Loughrey Walkway (6th St. Walkway) and the addition of a new bike path.
IDCP improvements after full build-out
Phase Two will involve the reconstruction of the commercial building at 250 Binney Street and new residential space located on the South side of the existing Blue Garage. The East/West pedestrian connectors from Loughrey Walkway to the East Service Drive and Broadway Park (South Park) will also be improved.
Phase Three incorporates the demolition and reconfiguration of the North side of the Blue Garage for commercial use. This reconstruction will also allow for improvements to Binney Park (North Park).
Kendall Square Projects
Within the Kendall Square Urban Renewal Boundary, there are a number current reconstruction and planning projects.
Boston Properties will complete Ames Street Redevelopments in 2018, which will provide housing and an improved streetscape on Ames Street and Pioneer Way.
In 2017, Boston Properties began demolition and the construction of 145 Broadway, formerly Eleven Cambridge Center. A building which will be home to Akamai's global headquarters.
In 2018, the CRA completed an inventory of privately owned public space and pedestrian easements within the KSURP boundary. The POPS in the MXD District page provides additional details on the locations, agreements and amenities within each space.