Mayor Walsh and Community Break Ground on “Parkside on Adams”

Mayor Walsh and Community Break Ground on “Parkside on Adams”

Former MBTA Substation Will Be Centerpiece of Roslindale Mixed-Use Complex

 

ROSLINDALE, September 6, 2014 – Mayor Martin J. Walsh today joined the community and development team to toss a ceremonial shovelful of dirt in Roslindale, officially breaking ground on Parkside at Adams, a mixed-use complex incorporating the historic former MBTA substation, and starting construction on 43 new residences.

Development partners in the project include Historic Boston Inc., Roslindale Village Main Street, and Peregrine Group LLC of Rumford, RI.

“Because of this project and this vision, a sleepy corner of Roslindale Village will take on new vibrancy,” Mayor Walsh told a crowd of several hundred at the 11 a.m. groundbreaking ceremony today. “The collaborative effort to bring back the Roslindale Substation demonstrates that our rich history can be catalyst for economic growth in our neighborhoods.”

The project, located across from the popular Adams Park, includes both the former Higgins Funeral Home site as well as the substation. Demolition took place late in the summer on the closed F.J. Higgins Funeral Home on Washington Street in Roslindale Village, making way for the project, which includes a restoration and repurposing of the 8,000-square-foot brick substation.

The apartments will be located in a four-story building and will include studio, one-bedroom, and two-bedroom units. Six of the units will be designated as affordable and available by lottery. There will be parking spaces for residents in an at-grade garage.

“Historic Boston celebrates the cross-sector collaboration that made this entire project – both new and historic – possible,” said Kathy Kottaridis, Executive Director of Historic Boston Inc. “What began as an effort to re-activate one long-vacant public building has become the source of economic growth and pride for the Roslindale community and everyone who played a role in triggering this preservation-based development.”

The Roslindale Substation, a former switching and transformer station that was originally part of Boston’s elevated railway network, preceding the existence of the MBTA, is at 4228 Washington St. Peregrine Group purchased the adjacent funeral home on July 24, 2014, and began demolition of the building on Monday, July 28.

“The Substation Development Project represents community economic development at its best,” said Christina DiLisio, Executive Director of Roslindale Village Main Street. “For the past 12 years dedicated community members — working hand-in-hand with RVMS and its partners — have pushed this project forward to ensure that this important corner of our business district is thriving and that our whole village is vibrant.”

Roslindale Village Main Street and Historic Boston were originally tasked by the Boston Redevelopment Authority in 2001 with figuring out a feasible development plan for the long-empty Roslindale Substation in Roslindale Village. After further study at the request of the BRA in 2011, they played a critical role of acquiring the properties and assembling the development opportunity.

Peregrine joined as the master developer in late 2012, and the three partners purchased three parcels of land owned by Higgins Funeral Home. Pending zoning approval, the substation property is slated to be transferred in this month from the Boston Redevelopment Authority to a limited liability company controlled by Peregrine Group, in which HBI and Roslindale Village Main Street will be included as limited partners.

The substation will be rehabilitated following the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation of historic properties and will be transformed into a multipurpose structure including a restaurant. This will be the most substantial and transformative project of Roslindale Village Main Street to date. The former MBTA substation was designed in Classical Revival style by a well-known Boston architect, Robert S. Peabody, and was built in 1911.

The residential portion of the project is scheduled for completion in August 2015. The restoration and repurposing of the substation is expected to be completed at about the same time.

The project was approved by the City of Boston Zoning Board of Appeals in October 2013.

The Massachusetts Historical Commission’s State Review Board approved the Roslindale Substation’s nomination to the National Register of Historic Places in June 2013.The Roslindale Substation was then listed on the National Register of Historic Places as of Aug. 27, 2013.

Then-Mayor Thomas M. Menino joined Historic Boston Inc., Roslindale Village Main Street, Peregrine Group, and scores of members of the local community to celebrate the listing of the substation on the National Register of Historic Places, which makes the substation eligible for State and Federal Rehabilitation Tax Credits.

The landmark substation was one of six stations built in the Boston area to convert AC electric power from the South Boston Power Station to DC power for trolley use. It went out of use in 1971 and has been vacant since.

ABOUT PEREGRINE GROUP LLC
The partners of Peregrine have experience in the all aspects of real estate development and project management, including: site selection, acquisition, debt/equity financing, design, engineering, permitting, construction, leasing and property management. As Developers, Owners, Project Managers, and Property Managers, Peregrine brings a comprehensive understanding of the development process life cycle and the challenges and opportunities that exist in every phase. Based in Rumford, RI, Peregrine brings a local presence with national experience across multiple facility types. The company has successfully executed many projects throughout New England and has worked extensively throughout the United States, Mexico and the Caribbean. For more information, please go to www.peregrinegrp.com .

ABOUT ROSLINDALE VILLAGE MAIN STREET
Roslindale Village Main Street, established in 1985, promotes Roslindale Village as an appealing destination and the dynamic center of the community. As an independent non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, RVMS brings together local volunteers, businesses and public agencies to strengthen the Village’s economic vitality, physical appearance and unique local character. RVMS was established in 1985 as one of the first urban Main Street Programs in the nation, with the help of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. For more information, please go to www.roslindale.net .

ABOUT HISTORIC BOSTON, INC.
Historic Boston Incorporated, founded in 1960, is a nonprofit organization that works with local partners to identify and invest in the redevelopment of historically significant buildings and cultural resources in order to catalyze neighborhood renewal. Historic Boston projects benefit from a full menu of high quality support including technical expertise, site acquisition, project financing and access to local, state and federal resources. For more infomraiton, please go to www.historicboston.org.

For more information, please contact:
Christina DiLisio
Executive Director of Roslindale Village Main Street
617.327.4065
rvmsdirector@gmail.com

Or
Kathy Kottaridis, Executive Director of Historic Boston, Inc.
617.442.1859
kathy@historicboston.org

Or
Tom Palmer
Tom Palmer Communication
617.755.7250
tompalmer@rcn.com

###