Google may be anchor tenant in 18-story building planned fo…

Google could grow its presence in Kendall Square enough to fill a new 18-story tower in the heart of the neighborhood, developers told the Cambridge Planning Board Tuesday.

Office developer Boston Properties is pitching a nearly 390,000-square-foot tower on the site of the MIT Coop at 325 Main St., next door to Google’s existing Kendall Square office. Google would be the main tenant in the new building, a company executive suggested to the Planning Board, according to the Boston Business Journal and reports from the meeting on social media.

It’s not clear how much of the space Google would fill, or how many jobs the tech company would add, but real estate industry executives say it has been considering a large expansion for some time. A Google spokesman Wednesday said he had no additional information about the plan. A spokeswoman for Boston Properties, which owns the site, did not return messages.

Boston Properties executives have said they plan to break ground next year.

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Google has about 1,400 employees in Cambridge, a spokesman said. Should it add to that head count, the company would join a growing list of major tech firms to expand in the Kendall Square area. Amazon now fills most of an office building at nearby 101 Main St., while Facebook recently opened a new office on Binney Street. Akamai is building a 19-story headquarters on Broadway, while Boeing Co. recently leased 100,000 square feet for an automated-flight subsidiary at a building under construction across the street from Google on Main Street.

Boston Properties’ project plans also include housing. It’s pitching a 34-story apartment and condo tower on the site of a garage at 145 Broadway, around the corner from the 18-story tower.

The buildings are being proposed jointly in part to balance housing and commercial space to comply with a broader zoning plan passed last year by Cambridge’s Redevelopment Authority and its Planning Board.

This project would require changes to that zoning. Members of both groups on Tuesday encouraged Boston Properties to improve the design of the buildings and come back with changes at a future meeting.

Tim Logan can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter at @bytimlogan.

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