Suffolk Downs Redevelopment | East Boston

shmessy

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 4, 2010
Messages
2,248
Reaction score
1,249
Globe with a render of the building:


Ugh. You know what's really an unmet need, Tom? AFFORDABLE HOUSING. I know you claim to still be building it, but the "current market" isn't geared toward life science space alone - that's BS. The development community is addicted to lab buildings like crack, and every municipality wants a cut of the tax revenue, and it will be the underprivileged who suffer.

O'Brien said nothing about the current market being geared to life sciences "alone" . Last 3 paragraphs of the article:
------
"HYM plans to start work this year on two other buildings as well, a 44,000 square-foot office building and a 465-unit residential building. Indeed, a majority of the project’s 1.7 million-square-foot first phase will still be housing, as will much of the larger portion of the project that sits in Boston, where city officials have viewed Suffolk Downs as a once-in-a-generation chance to tackle the city’s housing shortage on a large scale.

O’Brien agrees, even if the current market is geared toward lab space.

“We committed to building 10,000 units of housing at Suffolk Downs,” he said. “We will find ways to do that.”
------

This doesn't sound like a turn away from housing at all in the grand scheme of things. In fact, it seems pretty smart. Maybe liven up the area first, get the roads and utilities up, then build the housing. I'm in the 'trust, but verify' mode at this point.
 

dshoost88

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 14, 2008
Messages
1,891
Reaction score
1,043
RE Life Sciences space--be it at Suffolk Downs or anywhere else in Boston--Boston Business Journal had an article about this recently: What lab glut? Boston’s 'only scratching the surface' of biotech demand, panel says

I know a lot of it's behind a paywall, but here are a few highlights:
  • "Developers say the region is just getting started — in fact, that it hasn’t grown fast enough for the nearly 7 million square feet of demand from life-science users. That's up from the 1.9 million square feet of demand from just a year ago, according to a panel this week hosted by real estate industry group NAIOP Massachusetts."
  • "The Greater Boston metro area has captured 31% of all venture capital dollars going to U.S. life-sciences companies since the start of 2020 — and more money was invested in the region’s biotechs in four months than in any other year before 2020, according to JLL research."
  • "Some 8.1 million square feet of lab development is in the pipeline in Greater Boston. For projects that will deliver this year, 73% is pre-leased."
The switch to life sciences space isn't speculative or some kind of bubble--it's market driven. And given the uncertainties for many employers on longer term traditional office space needs post-COVID, pivoting to more life sciences real estate is a fiscally responsible move for many commercial developers. In many cases, it's the only viable path for them to secure financing. To HYM's credit, if they are successful leasing these life sciences spaces quickly at Suffolk Downs, it will not only accelerate the pace at which new housing can come online there, but may have a spillover impact on adjacent, non-Suffolk Downs real estate demand in Revere and Eastie. Say what you want about gentrification, the fact is that there is no shortage of neglected, older housing stock in the neighborhoods around here and an employment cluster at Suffolk Downs will only concentrate more reinvestment in the community.

This is good planning.
 

Vagabond

Active Member
Joined
Mar 17, 2017
Messages
357
Reaction score
652
RE Life Sciences space--be it at Suffolk Downs or anywhere else in Boston--Boston Business Journal had an article about this recently: What lab glut? Boston’s 'only scratching the surface' of biotech demand, panel says

I know a lot of it's behind a paywall, but here are a few highlights:
  • "Developers say the region is just getting started — in fact, that it hasn’t grown fast enough for the nearly 7 million square feet of demand from life-science users. That's up from the 1.9 million square feet of demand from just a year ago, according to a panel this week hosted by real estate industry group NAIOP Massachusetts."
  • "The Greater Boston metro area has captured 31% of all venture capital dollars going to U.S. life-sciences companies since the start of 2020 — and more money was invested in the region’s biotechs in four months than in any other year before 2020, according to JLL research."
  • "Some 8.1 million square feet of lab development is in the pipeline in Greater Boston. For projects that will deliver this year, 73% is pre-leased."
The switch to life sciences space isn't speculative or some kind of bubble--it's market driven. And given the uncertainties for many employers on longer term traditional office space needs post-COVID, pivoting to more life sciences real estate is a fiscally responsible move for many commercial developers. In many cases, it's the only viable path for them to secure financing. To HYM's credit, if they are successful leasing these life sciences spaces quickly at Suffolk Downs, it will not only accelerate the pace at which new housing can come online there, but may have a spillover impact on adjacent, non-Suffolk Downs real estate demand in Revere and Eastie. Say what you want about gentrification, the fact is that there is no shortage of neglected, older housing stock in the neighborhoods around here and an employment cluster at Suffolk Downs will only concentrate more reinvestment in the community.

This is good planning.
If anything, from the initial look too much market housing was going to be on the Revere side and not enough commercial. Revere could use the taxes and jobs for the locals of all income levels. Schools and cops gotta get funded!
 

stefal

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2015
Messages
1,341
Reaction score
1,512
Yeah, but most of the total development area appears to be inside Boston. So why can't the Boston portion have any affordable housing?
It will, otherwise I'd be surprised to see them fit all 10,000 res units in Revere...
 

fattony

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2013
Messages
2,001
Reaction score
219
Pretty poor ground floor activation in that render. Looks like how we used to build in Kendall 20+ years ago. There is a big fancy plaza across the street with a little kiosk. That would be a decent amenity for an office park, but pretty bad urbanism in my opinion. Do better please.

Maybe, if this is the back corner of the whole development area, it’s not so bad. But if it is remotely near the T or on the main street, it would be a real shame.
 
Last edited:

Top