Boston-based developer Related Beal has broken ground on a 484,000-square-foot mixed-income housing and hotel complex near North Station.
All 239 apartments will be restricted to households falling within the city’s low- and moderate-income housing guidelines. The largest percentage of units, 72, will be restricted to households making a maximum of 140 percent of the area median income, or roughly $110,000 for a two-person household. Another 40 will be set aside for those making 50 percent of the area median, with the remainder ranging from 30 to 165 percent of the area median.
The project is billed as a pioneering example of how to build housing affordable to the middle class in the heart of increasingly high-cost Boston. The financing package included $52 million in tax-exempt bonds and a $33.75 million taxable bond issued by MassDevelopment, 4 percent federal and state low-income tax credits that will provide $7.4 million in equity, and a $10.7 million contribution from North Station developers Boston Properties and Delaware North to full their affordable housing commitments. Related Beal also negotiated a 23-year 121A tax agreement with the city of Boston, in which it agreed to pay a percentage of revenues from portions of the project in lieu of property taxes.
Related Beal is leasing the parcel at Causeway and Beverly streets from the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, which made it available as a development site after the completion of the Big Dig. An earlier attempt to develop the property as housing stalled during the recession. Related Beal will pay $12.3 million under a 99-year ground lease signed with the Massachusetts Department of Transportation on Dec. 17.
The company held a ceremonial groundbreaking Thursday morning.
“This development, which showcases the power of mixed-income housing to transform vacant state-owned land, demonstrates our administration’s ongoing commitment to building stronger communities across the Commonwealth,” Gov. Charlie Baker said in prepared remarks.
In October, Baker announced a program to dispose of underutilized state-owned parcels, particularly near public transit stations, and sell them to developers to support housing production. Boston has begun a similar effort for city-owned properties.
Designed by Boston-based CBT Architects, the mixed-use development at Causeway and Beverly streets will include a 14-story residential building totaling 484,000 square feet with ground-floor retail and on-site parking. A 220-room Courtyard by Marriott Hotel with 2,500 square feet of meeting space will be operated by Turnberry Assoc. of Aventura, Florida.
Boston-based law firm Nutter advised Related Beal on title, acquisition, zoning and environmental matters and state and city zoning, real estate tax stabilization and hotel financing. Nutter also negotiated the development rights and the air rights lease.