Consistency of Boston's planning and zoning

A letter written by Boston resident Stephen Jerome in today's Globe about development in Chinatown raises issues relevant to the Charlesview housing project and future development in A/B. In both the Dainty Dot project in Chinatown and the Charlesview project in Brighton, the need for additional affordable housing is used as a rationale for zoning relief to allow building far taller what the existing zoning allows. Mr. Jerome observes:
"The same city planning and zoning standards should apply here as they would in any neighborhood. Otherwise, luxury condominium towers that threaten historic buildings and that violate zoning laws would be rising throughout the city, from Charlestown to Readville, as a putative mechanism to subsidize affordable housing. That this is not the case raises questions about the ad hoc nature of city planning in Boston, and how your zip code, rather than the rules on the books, can shape the fate of historic buildings and development on your block."
Claim overshadows project's real cost - The Boston Globe
Despite concessions, developer faces fight to build 27-floor tower at Dainty Dot site - The Boston Globe

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