Widett Circle could be home to a massive Amazon distribution center

New Developments News Boston
Widett Circle was once touted as a possible site for the 2024 Summer Olympics, and Mayor Martin J. Walsh later saw it as potentially a new gateway to the city. David L. Ryan/Globe staff

It was once pitched as the centerpiece of Boston’s bid for the 2024 Summer Olympics, then as a mini-city of its own, with millions of square feet of condominium and office towers, the Globe’s Tim Logan and Jon Chesto report.

Now, Widett Circle could instead become home to a giant Amazon distribution center.

The new owners of Widett — just south of downtown between South Boston and the Southeast Expressway ― are in serious talks with the e-commerce giant about building a shipping hub on the roughly 20-acre site, according to several people familiar with the discussions. A deal has not been finalized, and other potential tenants are still in the mix. But Amazon, eager to build its first major distribution center in the city, is considered a strong contender.

If the company lands at Widett Circle, it would reflect a major shift in the vision for the area. Not that long ago, it was touted by Mayor Martin J. Walsh and other civic leaders as a prime location for an Olympic stadium and, longer-term, a vibrant mixed-use development that could become a new gateway to the city.

“The developers promised a new neighborhood, but it sounds like they may be going back on their word,” said Michael Flaherty, an at-large city councilor who lives in South Boston. “Just as I wasn’t convinced that an Olympic stadium is the highest and best use, I’m not convinced that an Amazon distribution center is the highest and best use of the site.”

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