By Anthony Silva, WBZ NewsRadio 1030 New England Business Editor

CAMBRIDGE (CBS) – The vote was 7 to 1 by the Cambridge City Council to increase the permissible height of buildings in Kendall Square.

The change comes as Kendall becomes one of the hottest development sites in America, with vacancy rates down to single digits.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Anthony Silva reports

The head of the Cambridge Innovation Center, Tim Rowe, tells me the vote was needed to create more jobs.

“What it really does is bring more density to Kendall Square,” Rowe says. “We believe density is what drives this phenomenon we’ve seen here in Kendall Square, that’s bringing so many global companies,” such as Novartis, Sanofi and Amazon.

The vote was encouraged by MIT, which is planning to build a two million square foot tower with office, lab, retail and classroom space coupled with student housing.

Rowe tells me the zoning changes are also good news for smaller startups that have been unable to find space. He says 5% of available space will be reserved for startup companies.

“It’s really a zoning provision that I haven’t seen before,” says Rowe. “I think it will radically change the future of Kendall Square.”

Height restrictions in the area have been changed from 120 feet to a maximum of 250 feet.


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