HIT Invests $33M for Second Phase of Old Colony Redevelopment

The AFL-CIO Housing Investment Trust has invested $33.5 million in the $61.4 million development of 129 new apartments at Old Colony, one of Boston's largest public housing properties.

Boston—The AFL-CIO Housing Investment Trust (HIT) has invested $33.5 million in the $61.4 million development of 129 new apartments at Old Colony, one of Boston’s largest public housing properties. The development is the second phase of a redevelopment plan for Old Colony by the Boston Housing Authority and MassHousing in conjunction with the developer, Beacon Communities of Boston.

Phase two will create two low-rise apartment buildings and four clusters of townhouses. All of the housing will be affordable to households with incomes no higher than 60 percent of the area median income, with at least 13 units set aside for households earning 30 percent or less.

Previously, the HIT invested $26.7 million in Old Colony’s $56.8 million first phase of redevelopment, which included 116 housing units and the 10,000-square-foot Joseph M. Tierney Learning Center, which opened in the spring of 2012. The first phase was also developed by Beacon Communities.

In 2010, HUD kicked off the redevelopment with the award of more than $22 million of grants through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (the 2009 federal stimulus) to fund the green redevelopment of public housing. Dating from 1940, Old Colony is the most physically distressed site in the Boston Housing Authority’s portfolio, with aged systems and infrastructure and an annual energy and water cost of over $4,000 per unit. The site is comprised of more than 16 acres of 873 apartments in 22 three-story brick walk up buildings.

A major emphasis of the redevelopment will be building and energy-efficient measures, with building envelope, interiors, and systems designed for sustainability. The Joseph M. Tierney Learning Center showcases the green elements of the project in its structure and systems, as well as in educational displays about sustainability and conservation at the site. Also, resident self-sufficiency services will also be provided for job connection and training, transportation, educational and recreational and wellness opportunities.