It lacks the historic grandeur of Harvard Square, and the startup culture of Kendall Square, but the Alewife section of Cambridge is certainly making a name for itself.
Known as a primarily industrial area and the Red Line's end zone, Alewife's prime attribute is often declared to be the Fresh Pond Mall. But a new residential building, FuseCambridge, is looking to change that.
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The entirely-rental building, which have 244 units, is looking to capitalize on its proximity to the Alewife Brook Reservation, a 120-acre urban wild that continues into Arlington and Somerville.
"The building offers tremendous views of this beautiful reservation, and gives access to get out there to go for a bike ride or a walk," says Sean Sacks, Director at Hines, a real estate investment firm. "We call it 'The best backyard in Cambridge.'"
Sacks says the type of tenants he envisions for the building range from young professionals in the Cambridge tech and life sciences scene, all the way to folks in the suburbs who are downsizing and want access to the benefits of the city.
"Folks that appreciate being able to walk outside their apartment into the community and go for a twenty mile bike ride, or a 5 mile run in the morning," says Sacks, who anticipates a mid-September opening for the building. "Folks that are focused on the healthy lifestyles."
The apartments, which include studios, one, two, and three-bedroom units, feature premium kitchens with stainless steel appliances, white quartz kitchen countertops, and two-tone cabinetry. Most units have stunning views of the bucolic reservation, while an open layout and high ceilings allows sun to stream in all day.
FuseCambridge also features over 10,000-square-feet of amenity space including a reading lounge, conference room, and a heated pool with a mosaic-tile sundeck. But the aspect Hines prides itself on most is the integration of nature into the building, which is exhibited in features like their living green wall in the lobby.
"It's a live wall of plants," says Sacks. "Living, breathing art. We want to accentuate the connectivity to the outdoors."
From the two-story glass lobby, guests can also take a look at two massive Willow trees on the reservation, which the building was specifically constructed to maximize the views of. That use of the reservation as the ultimate scenery is continued into the residences, most of which have huge, oversized windows providing a scenic view of the urban wild.
"There's no better art to me than natural art," says Sacks.