The Alexandra Hotel, which opened in 1875, has sat vacant for the last 40 years and has proven itself time and time to be an eyesore for the surrounding community. Even former Boston City Council President Larry DiCara does not ever recall it being occupied during his City Hall duration that began in 1972. The last time is was commercially viable was in the 1940s, according to Forum Chair Steve Fox.
After a series of fires from the elevated Orange Line made the upper floors inhabitable, decades of neglect followed. Redevelopment of this project has not been easy. Nobody can determine what exactly would fit in this property. After several pitches over the last 30 years: turning it into a Church of Scientology HQ, a homeless shelter, affordable housing, and a 30-story apartment tower and luxury condos, all have failed due to the redevelopment being far too expensive.
Retail stores & restaurants have failed in Roxbury as over 45% of the housing stock is income-restricted, meaning that Roxbury residents do not have the disposable income to “treat” themselves to these places.
The zoning and architecture board have a plan in mind for the historical hotel. The Alexandra will stock to its root and be redeveloped into a boutique hotel. While keeping its original structure, the Alexandra will be rehabilitated and preserved, while being added to.
Neighbors, city representatives, and Roxbury residents are glad to being it restored and put to good use.
Article Source: https: //www.bisnow.com/boston/news/hotel/scientology-soaring-costs-and-blurred-neighborhood-lines-inside-the-alexandra-hotels-long-road-to-redevelopment-100057