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Development/Land Use

The Goulston & Storrs Development & Land Use group counsels developers, property owners, tenants, architects, contractors and institutional investors. Our clients develop substantial commercial real estate projects, including retail, office, sustainable energy, hotel, multifamily residential, mixed-use projects and sports facilities in New England, DC, New York and beyond. We are also counsel to numerous governmental bodies, including the Boston Planning & Development Agency.

Our firm is nationally recognized as a leading real estate law firm. We are known as authorities in multifamily housing, 40B, office, retail and major mixed use projects. Our work includes innumerable projects in downtown Boston, as well as permitting in essentially every community in Massachusetts. We have permitted over 30,000 units of housing, 15 regional malls and hundreds of retail centers locally and nationally.

When we see a site plan, we recognize potential issues and offer viable solutions. We are experienced in matters relating to wetlands, air and water quality, traffic and parking, zoning, contaminated property reuse, historical restrictions and environmental regulation. We know the market, have strong working relationships with regulatory agencies and know how to get deals done. Our litigators are prepared for land use cases of every kind.

We help our clients navigate through all aspects of the development cycle, including:

  • Site acquisition and assembly
  • Development transactions with governmental authorities
  • Zoning, permitting and land use litigation
  • Green development and smart growth
  • Environmental
  • Historic Preservation
  • Joint Ventures
  • Design and construction contracts
  • Development and property management agreements
  • Condominium and other forms of common ownership
  • Construction and permanent financing
  • Leasing, including ground leases

Representative Clients

  • AvalonBay Communities, Inc.
  • Beacon Capital Partners
  • Boston Properties
  • Bozzuto Development Group
  • Citibank
  • The Druker Company Ltd.
  • Hines Interests Limited Partnership
  • Ellis Enterprises
  • Fenway Ventures
  • General Theological Seminary
  • Giant/Stop & Shop/Ahold
  • Harvard University
  • L5K, LLC
  • Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
  • National Public Radio
  • New England Development
  • New York City Economic Development Corporation
  • Parkside Residential LLC
  • Partners HealthCare System, Inc.
  • Pinehills LLC
  • Time Warner Inc.
  • Trammell Crow Residential
  • YMCA of Greater New York

Representative Projects and Transactions

  • Secured all necessary state permits to support Stop & Shop's food-to-fuel conversion operations. This includes obtaining the first-ever issued Recycling, Conversion, Compost (“RCC”) Permit from MassDEP for anaerobic digestion technology. Also helped Stop & Shop develop and execute a strategy that obtained all of the required local approvals for the facility. 
  • Representation of Hines Interests and Archstone in connection land use issues relating to the redevelopment of the approximately 10 acre Old Convention Center site in Downtown Washington DC, a high-visibility District disposition site that will dramatically enhance and infill the City's urban core. Worked with client on multiple agreements with the District governing such unique areas as a private developer rebuilding and temporarily maintaining the public street grid, constructing and maintaining sustainable design features, and transferring required uses between parcels.
  • Leasing, acquisition, permitting, and development of biotech laboratory and office facilities for Shire Pharmaceuticals.
  • Representation of Boston Properties (REIT) in construction of Atlantic Wharf (formerly known as Russia Wharf), a mixed use 31-story office and residential project, Boston, MA and in connection with expansion of the Prudential Center, Boston, MA including 36-story office building, 11-story luxury residential building, 11-story office building and supermarket.
  • Representation of the New York City Economic Development Corporation in connection with the development of East River Science Park, a three-building commercial life sciences center to be developed on a 3.5 acre site in the northerly portion of the Bellevue Hospital Campus.
  • Representation of National Public Radio (NPR) in connection with the relocation of its headquarters and broadcast center to a historic landmark. Goulston & Storrs led NPR through the historic review process, appearing before the D.C. Historic Preservation Review Board and the Mayor’s Agent for Historic Preservation to secure the necessary approvals for demolition and partial addition to the historic building. Also assisted NPR in connection with securing zoning entitlements from the Board of Zoning Adjustment, including allowing multiple antennas on the roofs of its expanded headquarters building.
  • Representation of Citibank with respect to the leasing of multiple retail bank branches, including zoning analysis and permitting.
  • Representation of Boston Properties in a $200-300 million development of prime urban Washington, DC property under a long-term ground lease from George Washington University for multi-use complex to include an office building, luxury apartment building and significant retail stores.
  • Representation of Time Warner Inc. in connection with various aspects of the development of Time Warner Center.
  • Representation in connection with securing approval from the District of Columbia Zoning Commission for the redevelopment of an 8.9-acre parcel of land in Ward 5 of Northeast DC. The approved project will include @75,000-85,000 square feet of retail space and up to 825 residential units (including over 60 affordable housing units) on the property. The development will also include an Arts Walk that will provide studio space for local artists and an arts center that will provide a venue for community event.
  • Representation of Hines Interests Limited Partnership in development of South Station Air Rights Project, a mixed-use project to contain over 1.5 million SF to be built over the South Station Transportation Center in Boston, MA.
  • Representation of Partners HealthCare System, Inc. on the development of Parcels 6 and 7 in the Charlestown Navy Yard, including acquisition of the site and permitting for a new building to be constructed. 
  • Representation of Giant/Stop & Shop/Ahold in connection to the redevelopment of a shopping center along Wisconsin Avenue in Washington DC. Assisted client with securing Zoning Commission approval for the project in addition to the necessary regulatory and permitting approvals.
  • Representation of a joint venture of Gale International and Morgan Stanley in the development of 23 acres of vacant land in the South Boston Seaport formerly owned by the McCourt Company for a 6.5-million-square-foot mixed-use development, including significant office, hotel, retail, residential and cultural uses.
  • Representation of the YMCA of Greater New York in the development of facilities, bond financings and other real estate matters.
  • Representation of the General Theological Seminary in connection with development at its Chelsea campus, including implementation of a geothermal heating and cooling system.
  • Representation of Harvard University in the master plan development of a new campus on several hundred acres of land in the North Allston neighborhood on the Boston side of the Charles River.
  • Development of 750,000 square foot retail expansion of Natick Mall (the Natick Collection) for General Growth in Natick, MA with tenants including Nordstrom’s and Neiman Marcus and includes 250 units of residential development.
  • Representation of L5K, LLC, a joint venture between Lowe Enterprises Real Estate Group-East, Inc., CIM, Neighborhood Development Company and Bundy Development Corporation, in the $220 million mixed-use redevelopment project of City Vista in Washington, DC. This project was also a public-private partnership with the District of Columbia and was the result of extensive negotiations and documentation with the City. It now serves as the linchpin to the Mount Vernon triangle neighborhood.
  • Representation of the Museum of Fine Arts in pursuing a Master Plan redevelopment of its Huntington Avenue campus in the Fenway neighborhood of Boston, designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Norman Foster, now under construction. The project includes interior renovations of the existing Museum building and significant new additions in several phases.
  • Representation of Bozzuto Development Group on the site assessment and entitlement process for two properties in Washington, DC. Our team successfully prosecuted a rezoning application to the Zoning Commission and an application to the Historic Preservation Review Board as well as a special exception and variance application to the Board of Zoning Adjustment.
  • Representation of Pinehills LLC, a joint venture between New England Development and The Green Company, in the development of The Pinehills, a 3,000 acre mixed-use development in Plymouth, MA including over 3,000 homes, hotel and conference center, community and retail uses, and four golf courses.
  • Counsel to New England Development in the redevelopment of Boston’s Pier 4 for a mixed-use project containing retail, residential, hotel and office.
  • Representation of a joint venture among Julian Cohen, S.R. Weiner & Associates and Robin Brown in development of a mixed-use 5-star Mandarin Hotel and luxury residential (condominium and rental) and retail project on Boylston Street in Boston, MA.
  • Representation of the owners of Gillette Stadium and the New England Patriots in the rezoning, permitting and securing of federal, state and local approvals to build the $325 million professional football-and soccer stadium -- Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, MA.
  • Representation of Parkside Residential LLC in a transit-oriented mixed use development project on 15.5 acres of land near the Minnesota Avenue Metrorail Station in Ward 7. The development has been recognized by the Smart Growth Alliance and received the Enterprise Green Communities Initiative Grant. Parkside is one of only 20 Promise Neighborhoods in the country, after having been designated as such by President Obama.

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