We haven't been to the 800 block of Opal Street for a few years, not since developers built two homes and a garage that were inspired by the Schmidt’s carriage house on nearby Cambridge Street. Designed by David Traub Architects, these homes are quite a bit more traditional looking than the standard new construction you see around town these days.
On our last visit to the block, we also mentioned a nearby vacant lot that was available for sale and opined that some enterprising developer would eventually take advantage of the opportunity, but wondered how they'd handle its narrow 12' width of the lot. The solution, to buy the adjacent lots from the City, seems straightforward but was surely a challenging exercise which took years to execute. Nevertheless, developers were able to purchase the adjoining lots and are now planning three 16'-wide homes for this location. A reader sent us an email last week that gave us the heads up about work getting underway at 867-71 N. Opal St.
Since the block is so narrow, the developers are closing the street to parking during the week during business hours. If they didn't take this step, the large trucks that bring construction materials, etc, would surely knock off some side mirrors, or worse. Fortunately, residents will be allowed to park from 5pm to 7am every day. According to a flyer the developers distributed, they could close the street to parking 24 hours a day, but have decided not to take that step.
Also good news, this project will not impact Ogden Park, a small green space immediately to the south which stretches from Uber to 20th Street. These lots are also owned by the City, but we don't imagine they'll get sold off any time soon.
If you haven't ever visited, we recommend a trip to Ogden Park sometime soon. Just don't try to park on Opal Street during the middle of the day, as you could find yourself with a problem on your hands.