BOSTON – November 30, 2023 – Ground was broken today by THR Acquisition, LLC, an affiliate of Transom Real Estate and Harbor Run Development, for the Northampton Street Residences, which will have 47 new homes for sale in the South End for first-time, moderate-income homebuyers.
The project team will develop a former parking lot at 597-599 Columbus Ave. into 47 homeownership units for moderate-income homebuyers in a new, five-story building with 16 studio homes, 19 one-bedroom homes, seven two-bedroom homes, and five three-bedroom homes. One home will be handicapped accessible, and the development will also include community space and bicycle storage.
The project was approved by the Boston Planning & Development Agency (BPDA) and financed through MassHousing's CommonWealth Builder Program, Eastern Bank, and the Massachusetts Housing Investment Corporation (MHIC) Healthy Neighborhood Equity Fund II. Conservation Law Foundation (CLF), a co-sponsor of HNEF, screened Northampton Street Residences with HealthScore, a proprietary tool developed by CLF, to ensure that this new transit-oriented housing is equitable, and climate-smart and energy efficient to promote both resident, community and environmental health.
"By offering affordable homeownership opportunities for Roxbury residents, these future homes represent the kind of positive investment we want to see in Boston," said Chief of Planning Arthur Jemison. "More than four years in the making, this project will fulfill area planning and community goals. I am pleased to mark this milestone of transforming a parking lot into much needed income-restricted housing."
"The CommonWealth Builder Program is one of the state’s most powerful tools to help promote homeownership," said Executive Office of Housing and Livable Communities Secretary Ed Augustus. "The 47 units that will result from this project are just the beginning – the Governor’s recently proposed Affordable Homes Act authorizes an additional $100 million for CommonWealth Builder to support even more homeownership opportunities in communities of color across the state."
"This project is not just about creating more affordable housing – it is also about homeownership and providing to all the wealth creation opportunities of homeownership," stated Peter Spellios, Principal with Transom Real Estate. "We are grateful for the partnership with MassHousing and the Massachusetts Housing Investment Corporation for partnering with us to make affordable home ownership in Boston a reality."
"Bringing income-restricted homeownership opportunities to this site has always been our goal," said Ted Lubitz, owner of Harbor Run Development, "and we are excited to commemorate this major milestone with our partners and the community at today’s groundbreaking. Even more so, we look forward to celebrating its completion with its homeowners and residents."
"MassHousing is excited that this project will bring homeownership and wealth-building opportunities for new homebuyers in this neighborhood who were typically denied homebuying options in the past," said MassHousing CEO Chrystal Kornegay. "We look forward to welcoming 47 first-time homebuyers into their new affordable homes."
"HNEF II was created to finance inclusive mixed-use developments near public transportation that offer retail, housing, and social services to support healthier communities. The Northampton Street Residences project is ideally situated to offer all these benefits, resulting in a significant positive impact in Lower Roxbury," said Moddie Turay, president and CEO of MHIC. "Most importantly, affordable homeownership options are critical to closing the wealth gap for low-income communities, and especially for individuals and families of color."
The project parcel, located near the Massachusetts Avenue MBTA subway station, was conveyed to the development team as part of a series of transactions that renovated and preserved the neighboring Newcastle Saranac affordable housing community. MassHousing is providing $11.8 million in CommonWealth Builder financing, Eastern Bank is providing $21.1 million in construction financing and $4 million is being provided through the MHIC HNEF II.
The CommonWealth Builder Program is a landmark initiative to address the racial homeownership gap in Massachusetts by creating new homeownership and wealth-building opportunities in communities of color. It is the largest state-level program of its kind in the nation and provides market-based subsidies to support the construction of new, moderately priced, single-family homes and condominiums in the City of Boston, the state’s 26 Gateway Cities, and Framingham and Randolph.
About the Boston Planning & Development Agency
As the City of Boston’s urban planning and economic development agency, the BPDA works in partnership with the community to plan Boston's future while respecting its past. The agency’s passionate and knowledgeable staff guides physical, social, and economic change in Boston’s neighborhoods and its downtown to shape a more prosperous, resilient, and vibrant city for all.
About Transom Real Estate
Transom is a real estate investment and development firm focusing extensively within the Greater Boston market focused on creativity and craftsmanship. Among other areas of expertise, Transom has a significant focus on creating affordable and work force housing – working with local and state non-profits and agencies to identify and execute new opportunities to create new affordable and work force rental and home ownership opportunities. Transom has completed and is currently developing more than 750 residential units. Transon seeks to create lasting value not just for the people who live and work in our buildings but also for the people who see them every day. Our team is committed to enhancing the neighborhoods we serve by delivering compelling design that fits the context of the neighborhood. In fact, each project is distinct in its own way. This is a result of our partnerships with professionals whose crafts are creative and inspiring. We hold ourselves accountable to developing dynamic places that balance respectful with unconventional, while simultaneously delivering predictably good results. We challenge ourselves to create a high standard of process and product for real estate in Boston. Most importantly, we know that investing time, resources, and creativity are all necessary to make it happen.
About Harbor Run Development
Harbor Run Development LLC (“Harbor Run”) is a boutique real estate investment and development firm focused on development and acquisition opportunities in the Greater Boston area. Its primary concentration is on market rate, workforce, and affordable housing. Harbor Run’s founder, Ted Lubitz, has nearly 20 years of extensive history and experience in the preservation and creation of affordable and workforce housing in the City of Boston and across Massachusetts. Since its formation in 2017, Harbor Run has acquired and preserved more than 220 units of naturally occurring workforce housing in the greater Boston area and is currently in various stages of development and/or construction for over 200 new units of housing in Massachusetts.
MassHousing (The Massachusetts Housing Finance Agency) is an independent, quasi-public agency created in 1966 and charged with providing financing for affordable housing in Massachusetts. The Agency raises capital by selling bonds and lends the proceeds to low- and moderate-income homebuyers and homeowners, and to developers who build or preserve affordable and/or mixed-income rental housing. MassHousing does not use taxpayer dollars to sustain its operations, although it administers some publicly funded programs on behalf of the Commonwealth. Since its inception, MassHousing has provided more than $29.5 billion for affordable housing. For more information, follow us on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
About the Massachusetts Housing Investment Corporation
Massachusetts Housing Investment Corporation (MHIC) is a private, non-profit financier of affordable housing and community development throughout New England, providing financing that would not otherwise be available to neighborhoods most in need. For over 31 years, MHIC has invested more than $3.2 billion to help create and sustain healthy, equitable communities where people, businesses, and organizations can thrive.