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BOSTON-State Secretary of environmental affairs Robert Durand is seeking changes in the city’s Municipal Harbor Project, specifically in the 14-acre Fan Pier Project that was proposed by Chicago-based developer Nicholas Pritzker. In a letter to the Boston Redevelopment Authority, Durand wrote, “I have required that open spaces be expanded to enhance public connectivity to the waterfront–physically, visually and psychologically.”

In a draft of his pending decision, Durand proposes eliminating one office tower and cutting building heights near the water, as well as increasing distance between the buildings and the water. “The secretary wants more open space and access to water,” says Doug Pizzi, press secretary at the executive office of environmental affairs. “It was left that the easiest way to do this was to get rid of Building H. The door is open for Pritzker to come up with an alternate plan.” In the proposed plan Building H occupies 500,000 sf and a half acre footprint.

Pritzker’s local spokesperson, Pam McDermott, could not be reached for comment by press time. She says in a written statement, “We really just need to go over this and study the implications of it. We need time to absorb it.”

Durand imposed a 250-foot height limit on buildings, which would cut several floors from Pritzker’s proposed 298-foot Grand Hyatt Hotel and a 275-foot office and condo building next door. Last week, Pritzker was quoted as saying that any more changes in his development would make the project economically unfeasible.

Pizzi emphasized to Globest.com that the draft decision looked at a number of items for the entire 128-acre Municipal Harbor Project Area. In his draft, Durand’s demands for more open space and shorter buildings extend to all waterfront areas of the industrial site that mayor Thomas M. Menino wants to develop. Most of the changes are aimed at Pritzker, whose $1.2 billion plan is backed by Menino.

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