Historic Property Renovations
1902-1904 Washington Street | Boston
Mixed-use - 7 apartments, 2 townhouses and offices
BREC, in a joint venture with Urban Core Development LLC, purchased and re-developed 1902-1904 Washington Street, the former home of Suffolk Pawn Brokers. Located adjacent to our 11 Newcomb Street development, and abandoned for more than 15 years, this corner building was an eyesore for the neighborhood. The building was almost beyond repair; a fire had forced the top story to be removed some 30 years ago and much of the internal structure was compromised. Working in conjunction with Boston Landmarks and the Massachusetts State Housing Preservation Organization, we went out of our way to retain and restore as much of the historic fabric of the original buildings as possible.
Sitting along the gateway that connects the South End to Dudley Square, these buildings are special to us for another reason - they are home to the offices of the BREC family of companies. In addition to BREC's office space, the buildings have nine residential units containing a mix of 1-4 bedroom units.
11 Newcomb Street | Boston
Residential - 14 rental apartments
BREC Development, in a joint venture with Urban Core Development LLC, purchased and re-developed the 4-story building located at 11 Newcomb Street, formally owned and occupied by Teen Challenge, New England.
Located along the Washington Street corridor bordering the South End, this brick building consists of nearly 18,000 square feet and has been redeveloped into 14 residential market rate rental units. Construction began in December 2014 and the units were delivered in January 2016. The project contains a mix of 1-3 bedroom units to fit a variety of tenants. There are 15 assigned parking spaces next to the building for residents. Consistent with BREC Development long term strategy, the project has been successfully retained as a rental project by our principals.
53 Fort Ave | Boston
Residential - 3 rental apartments
In the spring of 2013 BREC was presented with an opportunity to purchase a three family house in the historic Fort Hill area of Roxbury. At the time of its purchase, 53 Fort Ave had been foreclosed on and was in a complete state of disrepair after several years of neglect.
Appreciating the home's historical significance and potential for restoration, BREC worked in partnership with the Massachusetts Historical Commission and the National Park Service to restore the house in a manner that reflected it’s rich and often overlooked history. The development team was able to overcome the limitations caused by the homes narrow footprint and rebuild from the ground up starting in its leaky basement to create two 3-bedroom units and one 4-bedroom unit.
In September of 2014, the doors of 53 Fort Ave were once again opened to residents. The rental units were very well received, and BREC is proud to have restored this home to its full potential, both architecturally and economically. It now sits at the foot of Highland Park as the gem of the neighborhood once again.
652 Massachusetts Ave | Boston
Residential - 4 condominiums
In July 2012 BREC purchased the historic row-house at 652 Massachusetts Avenue from its long-time owner. At the time it was a three-unit building, poorly laid out and in need of major renovation.
Though this part of the South End had been rapidly improving rent-wise and the most obvious thing to do was a cosmetic renovation to the existing units, BREC saw the real opportunity in the expansion of the building’s floor area and increase in unit count. Over a nine month period, in collaboration with the Worcester Square Neighborhood Association, the direct abutters of the building and the South End Landmarks Commission, BREC was able to reach a design that accomplished everyone’s goals.
As a result of this collaboration, BREC received the necessary variances from the Zoning Board of Appeals to move forward with its plan. In addition to increasing the building’s square footage and unit count, the addition allowed for the creation of outdoor space for three of the four units in the building – a rare amenity in the City of Boston. In December 2013 the project was placed in service.
117 Centre Street | Boston
Residential - 3 rental apartments
In the winter of 2014, BREC was presented the opportunity to purchase 117 Centre Street. At the time of purchase, 117 Centre Street was a two-family residence and had been one of the first homes built on Centre Street when the area was originally settled over 100 years ago. Once again, in conjunction with Boston Landmarks and the Massachusetts State Housing Preservation Office, the team worked to retain and restore as much of the historic fabric of the original structure as possible.
BREC was able to utilize the underlying zoning for the area to increase the unit count to three total units, without variance. The new design created two townhouse style units and stand-alone cottage house. These style of units are rare in the city and upon completion in the Winter of 2016, the units were quickly rented.
784 Tremont Street | Boston
Mixed-use - 6 rental apartments and 2 offices
BREC Development purchased this property in October 2010. At that time, 784 Tremont Street was a dilapidated building that, despite several failed attempts at rehabilitation, remained a boarded-up eyesore for over a decade.
Recognizing the building's historical and architectural significance, BREC Development worked in partnership with South End Landmarks Commission and the Massachusetts Historical Commission to incorporate the building’s rich history within its development plan. This project offered a unique set of development challenges and opportunities.
The shallow, but long dimensions of the lot combined with the requirement to work within the existing unit boundaries ranging from 230-400 square feet made it very difficult to lay out functional and marketable units. After many hours and countless design iterations, and due in large part to Patrick Haydon’s expertise, the development team delivered units that transcend the limitations of such small spaces.
In August 2011, 784 Tremont Street was placed back in service. The residential units were very well received, and Haycon, LLC is proud to call the first-floor commercial space home.
85 Windsor Street | Boston
Residential - 2 rental apartments
In the Spring of 2016, BREC received a call about 85 Windsor Street and we jumped at the chance of purchasing the distinct and historic corner building located in Frederick Douglas Square, Roxbury. The building itself sits on a tiny footprint - the lot is only 906 sf - and that, coupled with the challenge of preserving the distinct corner storefront required the team to get creative with the floor plans to make the project feasible.
Once again working in concert with Boston Landmarks and the State Housing Preservation Office, the team was able to preserve most of the historic fabric of the original building and create two new apartments, each with their own direct entry off the street. The building was placed in service in the spring of 2014.