Urban Edge Opens Jackson Commons, JPNDC Starts Construction on 75 Amory Avenue as part of Jackson Square Redevelopment Initiative (JSRI)

Boston, MA (Friday, October 2nd, 2015) – Jackson Commons is a green, mixed-use, mixed-income, brownfield, transit-oriented development project in the Roxbury neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts and part of the first phase of the Jackson Square Redevelopment Initiative. Completed in May 2015, Jackson Commons included gut renovation of the existing 100-year-old Webb Building and a newly-constructed 4-story addition. The overall project consists of 37 mixed-income rental apartments and approximately 13,000 square feet of ground floor retail/ office space in a LEED Gold community. 8 units are dedicated for homeless families. All residents will benefit from an on-site resource coordinator with case management services. The lowest household income and size in Jackson Commons is $4,104 with 3 household members; and the highest household income is $99,166 with 4 household members. This creates a mixed-income community while retaining our focus on affordable housing.

“Urban Edge has worked for many years to redevelop Jackson Square, and build upon this neighborhood by providing new housing, retail and commercial space. Jackson Commons is just one part of a vision to bring the community back to life,” said Karen Royston, Urban Edge Board Chair.

Jackson Commons is the second building to be completed under the Jackson Square Redevelopment Initiative (JSRI), which includes more than 400 units of housing, 80,000 square feet of retail, office space, and community recreation facilities. This redevelopment initiative is a comprehensive, multi-phased project, that is one of the largest community-driven neighborhood revitalization projects in the United States. The goal is to create a model mixed-income housing program that will create over 400 new housing units, that serve a variety of income ranges and includes different tenure types.

Additionally, JPNDC has commenced construction on 75 Amory Avenue, which will create 39 affordable apartments for low-income families as part of this redevelopment initiative. JPNDC and Urban Edge have invested well over $250 million into the neighborhood over the past three decades.

Jackson Commons is next to the future site of the Jackson Square Recreation Center, which will provide the youth of this diverse neighborhood with a much-needed permanent facility to learn, grow, and succeed. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) awarded Urban Edge with a Brownfield clean-up grant of $200,000 for the Jackson Square Recreation Center.

“Projects such as Jackson Commons are vital to the continued growth of the community and the Commonwealth on the whole,” said Undersecretary Chrystal Kornegay. “This development is the direct result of decades of community organizing and planning. The residents of Roxbury and Jamaica Plain have given us all a model of community development. I look forward to continuing to work with cities, neighborhood partners and the business community as we work to increase housing opportunities across Massachusetts.”

“I am proud that the City of Boston has invested funding into the redevelopment of these once vacant and underutilized public and private parcels,” said Mayor Walsh. “I want to thank our partners for working with us to create transit-oriented housing that will knit the Roxbury and Jamaica Plain Neighborhood together.”

Jackson Commons received generous funding from a wide variety of sources, including State, Federal, and New Market tax credits, and a variety of other fund from the Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development; Neighborhood Housing Trust and HOME funds from the City of Boston; IDP funds from the Boston Redevelopment Authority; and State Historic tax credits from the Massachusetts Historic Commission. In addition, the Hyams Foundation, the Vincent Mulford Foundation, and MassDevelopment awarded money from the Brownfields Redevelopment Funds that will go toward environmental remediation and infrastructure work. Citizens Bank provided a loan for the project.

“Jackson Commons is a great development that provides needed affordable housing in Boston,” said Quincy Miller, President of Citizens Bank, Massachusetts. “Citizens’ Community Development Lending Group is happy to help Urban Edge meet its strategic and financial goals for this important project.”

The construction of Jackson Commons is complete, and families have moved into their new homes. On Wednesday, September 30th at 10:30AM, Urban Edge, JPNDC, elected officials, and funders gathered for a ribbon cutting ceremony of Jackson Commons and start of construction of 75 Amory Avenue.