After eye-catching plans were released for the 29-story “One Mystic” apartment tower in Charlestown, questions remained about the little-known firm behind the project.
A submission to the Boston Planning & Development Agency listed Newton-based Fulcrum Global Investors as the applicant. Fulcrum was incorporated in 2019 and doesn’t have a web site or track record of development in Boston, in contrast to the familiar names behind most of the city’s major projects.
It turns out Fulcrum is the creation of Scott Brown, a former global head of real estate for Barings, the real estate arm of MassMutual. After retiring last year from his corporate real estate job, Brown formed Fulcrum to invest on behalf of himself and other contacts made during his career.
“Because of my almost four decades in the business, we have good access to capital and are looking for good returns for investors,” Brown said in a phone interview.
The firm is raising capital directly from individuals as it pursues the redevelopment of the 1-acre site off Mystic Avenue near the Somerville line. John Brainard, a local real estate broker, and Gerry Labonte, a real estate and private equity consultant, are Fulcrum’s other full-time employees.
Brown calls the firm’s development focus “affordable luxury.” Nearly half of the 695 apartments at One Mystic would be designed under Boston’s compact living pilot, with floor plans as small as 373 square feet. The 552,000-square-foot project would include high-end touches such as a roof deck and ground-floor food hall.
No public meetings on One Mystic have been scheduled yet, but Brown said a web site with additional details is scheduled to go live in the near future.
“We’re trying to lift people up and provide some housing that fits into neighborhoods and fits into communities,” he said.