225 Centre Street Groundbreaking Kicks Off Redevelopment of Boston’s Jackson Square
HIT and Building America CDE Help Finance $53 Million Mixed-Use Project 

June 12, 2012


A representative of the AFL-CIO Housing Investment Trust and its subsidiary Building America CDE was on hand for the groundbreaking ceremony for 225 Centre Street, a new transit-oriented development in Boston. The HIT is providing $9.9 million to help finance the project’s residential component, while almost 17,000 square feet of first floor commercial space and parking will be partially financed through $5.5 million of New Markets Tax Credits provided by Building America. 

“I am very pleased to see this project get underway,” said Tom O’Malley, Director of the HIT’s New England Regional Office. He joined other residents, civic leaders, and government officials gathered at the construction site for the celebration. “It is going to have a positive impact on this largely vacant transitional zone between the Roxbury and Jamaica Plain communities in terms of creating new housing – both affordable and market rate-, much-needed retail next to the Jackson Square rapid transit stop, and jobs.” O’Malley added that work on the project is expected to generate over 300 union construction jobs as well as long-term jobs in the businesses that will occupy the commercial space. 

225 Centre Street is the first phase of a $250 million redevelopment of the Jackson Square district of Jamaica Plain and Roxbury. The community-based plan is designed to develop a mix of multifamily housing; retail, commercial, and office space; community areas; and green space on 11 acres adjacent to the Jackson Square Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) station. The Jackson Square redevelopment has been designated a Silver Certified Plan by the U.S. Green Building Council under its LEED Neighborhood Development pilot program, and its location next to a MBTA train station makes it a model of transit-oriented development. 225 Centre Street’s residential component will be LEED Certifiable and Energy Star compliant. Thirty-five of the property’s 103 rental units will be affordable to lower-income households. 

The project is part of the HIT’s Massachusetts Housing Initiative, through which the HIT is working with MassHousing to increase the availability of affordable housing in the state. Since launching this initiative in 2007, the HIT has invested $197 million in Massachusetts to build or preserve over 2,400 housing units, 93% of which are affordable to low-income families. These HIT-financed projects have generated approximately 2,475 union construction jobs.