UNIQUE COLLABORATION BETWEEN TWO CHINATOWN COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS AND PRIVATE DEVELOPER CREATES TRANSFORMATIONAL PROJECT AND ADDITIONAL AFFORDABLE HOUSING AND PUBLIC OPEN SPACE IN SOUTH END/CHINATOWN
Boston, MA—July 12, 2018—A three-building new development project in the South End cleared a significant hurdle on Thursday evening when the Boston Planning and Development Agency Board voted to approve the Planned Development Area (PDA) for The Shawmut/Washington Street Block, providing a green light for this transformative development. The project represents an unprecedented collaboration between The Davis Companies, a Boston-based real estate investment and development firm, and two well-respected Chinatown community organizations, the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association of New England (CCBA) and Boston Chinese Evangelical Church (BCEC).
A direct result of this unique partnership will be the creation of up to 536 rental and home ownership units- including at least 26% dedicated to affordable housing, as well as ground floor retail, commercial, community and cultural spaces to enliven the Washington Street and Shawmut Avenue corridors. The PDA will also provide 27% public open space at the project – 7% above what is required, as well as underwriting the design and engineering for a new park at 142 Shawmut Avenue. An East/West pedestrian connection, which was recommended as part of the neighborhood planning process, will provide residents of the South End and Castle Square Housing with a safe, well-lit public pathway to the Washington Street Corridor which does not exist today.
The approval paves way to develop three new buildings:
(1) A 13-story residential complex with approximately 139 market rate homeownership units, to be developed by The Davis Companies at 112 Shawmut Avenue;
(2) New expansion of the BCEC building at 120 Shawmut Avenue to house church worship space, community programs and develop up to 84 housing on the upper floors, enabling the possibility of consolidating BCEC’s services onto one site; and
(3) A building of up to 313 residential units and ground floor retail space at 50 Herald Street, currently owned by the CCBA, which will provide at least 26% affordable units, which will be subsidized by inclusionary zoning funds from the Davis project.
“This unique partnership will provide much-needed affordable housing for the community, as well as three new public open spaces for residents and neighbors alike,” said Brian Fallon, President of TDC Development Group, a subsidiary of The Davis Companies. “Our nonprofit partner partners in this innovative three property PDA have been stewards of the community for many years, and this development will ensure that they will be able to serve the community for years to come, in addition to collectively bringing new housing and jobs to our city.”
“This project will allow us to create a new, larger church to better serve God and our community. It will provide expanded social programs such as ESL and citizenship classes, afterschool programs for middle school students, summer day camp. Our ministries, from children to elderly, are open to all. “said Steven Chin, Senior Pastor of the Boston Chinese Evangelical Church.
“The CCBA is a nearly 100-year old Chinatown institution with an accomplished track record owning affordable housing projects in the neighborhood, including Tai Tung Village and Waterford Place. We will continue our legacy by providing at least 26% affordable housing on this site, leveraging linkage payments which will flow from the Davis building to CCBA,” said Paul Chan, President, Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association of New England.
In 2012, the Boston Planning and Development Agency (BPDA), together with a consultant and a 27-member Advisory Group laid out a vision for the development of the Economic Development Area (EDA) bounded by Herald Street to the north, Albany Street to the south and Shawmut Avenue to the west. The creation of this district was designed to offer a unique opportunity to not only increase housing, including much needed affordable housing, but also community spaces and services for the surrounding neighborhood.
About The Davis Companies
The Davis Companies is an integrated real estate investment, development and management firm headquartered in Boston that has invested more than $4 billion in gross asset value through real estate equity, debt and fixed-income securities. A combination of capital markets, development and management expertise allows The Davis Companies to nimbly tackle complex opportunities. Directly, and with its valued partners, The Davis Companies currently owns a real estate portfolio of approximately 12 million square feet of office, multifamily, retail, hospitality, light industrial, healthcare and bioscience properties across the Eastern United States. For further information, visit www.thedaviscompanies.com.
About the CCBA
The Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association of New England (CCBA) was established in 1923. Currently with 35 member groups consisting of family associations and community organizations, CCBA serves as the umbrella organization for the Chinese communities of New England. CCBA sponsors a variety of activities and also manages Tai Tung Village and Waterford Place; apartment complexes that provide the much-needed affordable housing to the Chinese community. https://ccbaboston.org/en/
About the BCEC
The Boston Chinese Evangelical Church is a Bible-believing, non-denominational, local body of believers whose purpose is to glorify God through worship, edifying believers, and sharing Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior by word and deed to the Greater Boston Chinese community and the world. The church has seven congregations ministering in Mandarin, Cantonese and English, in two locations – Boston and Newton. Over 1300 adults, youth, and children attend church each week. The church, started 57 years ago, encourages its members to be a blessing to the local community. www.bcec.net
Pam McDermott Carolyn Spicer