This week marked the start of one and the completion of another major redevelopment effort financed by MassHousing.
Earlier in the week, MassHousing announced the closing of $106.2 million in loans for the redevelopment of Charlesview Apartments in Brighton. This is the second-largest financing of a single-rental development that the Agency has ever done, and will result in 240 new apartments, new street patterns, a park, community center and retain space.
In Lowell, Gov. Patrick, Congresswoman Tsongas, Attorney General Coakley and others were on hand to cut the ribbon at Appleton Mills, a former industrial site that has been redeveloped into affordable housing. MassHousing provided $40.2 million in financing for phases 1A and 1B of the project, which created 130 affordable rental units. Many of the units are envisioned as live-work space for artists, who will help spur a creative economy in the city's downtown.
Appleton Mills (video | photos) will help anchor the larger Hamilton Canal District, which aims to reinvent 15 acres of underutilized land in downtown Lowell into a mixed-use neighborhood. The overall Hamilton Canal District project will result in 11 new buildings, four rehabilitated historic buildings and 725 units of affordable housing.
Redevelopment and housing preservation have become more and more prevalent in recent months. Earlier this year, we closed a package of 10 loans for $125 million to preserve 931 apartments in what was probably the largest preservation transaction in Massachusetts history. It will be interesting to see what's next.