Boston's Expanding Borders

Author: Aaron Jodka

By Aaron Jodka | June 2018

Boston is undergoing a transformative change as development redefines neighborhoods and submarkets throughout the city. While decades in the making, the emergence of the Seaport has been nothing short of astounding. It will attract even more development, but it seems a long time ago that windswept parking lots sat across the Fort Point Channel, rather than $1,000/SF office buildings. The Fenway has undergone its own renaissance, with luxury residential, prime retail, and office product replacing fast food joints and auto repair shops.

Other neighborhoods are in the midst of change, from what Hub on Causeway is doing to that whole area around North Station along with thousands of residential units, to Bulfinch Crossing revitalizing the edge of Government Center.

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Now that kind of development is set to push out further. Washington Village will remake the Andrew Square area, while the Beat project (former Boston Globe headquarters) looks to be the first in a wave of investment and development in Columbia Point. The nearby former Bayside Expo Center could sell for $200 million, per reports, while pricing for Widett Circle is estimated to be in the same ballpark. These sites could handle construction of millions of SF between them. Suffolk Downs, pitched by the city as its choice for Amazon’s HQ2, would establish East Boston as an office location. Exchange South End and Junction 58 plan to connect underdeveloped parcels in the South End to the city's urban fabric.

Outside of Boston, Somerville could be the next development hot spot in the Inner Suburbs. Its inventory is limited, which is forcing the nascent tech industry to struggle to find space. Malden and Medford are attracting new development, and it’s just a matter of time until Chelsea and Everett also see more interest in new office supply.

Greater Boston is in expansion mode. Tenants, residents, and capital want to be here, continuing to drive further densification in the urban core and creating new development opportunities in the years and cycles ahead.

 

Boston's Space Crunch

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