BPDA Board Approves Plans to Double Size, Add Turf Field at Jackson Square Rec Center

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The Jackson Square Recreation Center includes an ice rink that would be a turf field during summer months.

The Boston Planning & Development Agency (BPDA) board approved new plans for a proposed Jackson Square Recreational Center that vastly increases the size of the center and adds an additional floor.

The proposed Jackson Square Recreation Center would include an ice rink and a turf field.

The BPDA board approved plans on March 17 that call for a 75,000 square foot recreation center at the intersection of Columbus Avenue and Ritchie Street across the street from the Jackson Square MBTA Station in Jamaica Plain. Earlier plans had the project at 34,000 square feet, said BPDA spokesperson Bonnie McGilpin. The size increase is due to an the addition of another floor to the project.

The recreation center would be a three-story multi-use indoor space with an ice rink on the first floor 10 months of the year, with a mezzanine level (regarded as the second floor) that includes bleacher seating for the ice rink. The ice rink would be converted into a turf field during the summer months. The upper floor would be an indoor turf field year-round.

The center would also include "dedicated space for classes and social programs," according to a memo submitted by developers Jackson Square Partners LLC and Urban Edge Housing Corporation.

The proposed Jackson Square Recreation Center includes a mezzanine area with bleacher seating for the ice rink.

The recreation center would focus on serving 26,000 youth within 1.5 miles of the center and their families. There would also be about 100 part-time jobs for neighborhood youths at the center.

As a next step, the project will go to the city's Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) in pursuit of several zoning variances. The variances include allowing a recreational center at this location, and allowing its proposed height of 69 feet in an area zoned for 45 feet. No date has been set for a ZBA hearing.

The proposed Jackson Square Recreation Center includes a year-round turf field.