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MassDevelopment

$170K Award Signals Progress for "Lighthouses"

Brownfields Fund Advances North Shore CDC’s Affordable Housing Development in Salem’s Point Neighborhood


March 22, 2021


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contacts:
Matthew Mogavero, MassDevelopment, 857-248-0868 (cell) 
mmogavero@massdevelopment.com

David Valecillos, North Shore Community Development Coalition, 803-960-8163
david@northshorecdc.org

Project rendering of Lighthouse 47, an affordable housing facility to be built at 47 Leavitt St. in Salem.

Project rendering of Lighthouse 47, an affordable housing facility to be built at 47 Leavitt St. in Salem.

MassDevelopment has awarded $170,000 from the Brownfields Redevelopment Fund to North Shore Community Development Coalition, Inc. (North Shore CDC) to assess and remediate a .22-acre lot at 47 Leavitt St. in Salem that will be the site of a 25-unit affordable housing facility complemented by community and commercial space. This is one of three lots in the Point neighborhood in Salem that North Shore CDC is redeveloping as part of a project dubbed “The Lighthouses.” A lot at 34 Peabody St. will also be developed into a 21-unit affordable housing development with additional community space, and a lot at 38 Palmer St. will be improved and used to provide additional parking for the 47 Leavitt St. development. Of the 46 new units of affordable rental housing this project will create, 30 units will be rented to households earning up to 60% of the area median income and 16 units will be set aside for households earning up to 30% of the area median income.

“The Commonwealth is committed to supporting the remediation of vacant and environmentally challenged sites into vibrant, actively used housing and commercial developments,” said Housing and Economic Development Secretary Mike Kennealy, who serves as chair of MassDevelopment’s Board of Directors. “MassDevelopment’s Brownfields Redevelopment Fund is vital to advancing these projects and bringing life back to underutilized spaces in cities and towns across Massachusetts.”

“For generations, the Point neighborhood in Salem has been a place where immigrants and individuals of all backgrounds could locate, open businesses, and build a better life for themselves and their families,” said MassDevelopment President and CEO Dan Rivera. “Building affordable housing, like North Shore Community Development Coalition’s The Lighthouses project, is crucial to ensuring the community remains as dynamic and diverse as it is today. MassDevelopment is proud to be a small part of it.”

Based in Salem, North Shore CDC is a regional community development corporation whose mission is to invest in neighborhoods to create thriving communities. In addition to Salem, the organization has made affordable housing investments in Beverly and Gloucester, with additional programs serving people throughout the North Shore region.

MassDevelopment has previously supported North Shore CDC projects in the Point neighborhood. In 2018, the organization used a $3.4 million tax-exempt bond to buy and renovate the Harbor-Lafayette Homes; in 2016 the organization used a $12.9 million tax-exempt bond to buy and renovate the Congress Street Residences; in 2014, the organization used a $9.8 million tax-exempt bond to buy and renovate the Salem Point Apartments; and in 2012 the organization used a $166,513 award from the Brownfields Redevelopment Fund to preserve 77 units of affordable housing.

Additionally, North Shore CDC has been awarded a total of $145,000 from MassDevelopment’s Commonwealth Places program to fund four placemaking projects in the Point. In 2020, the organization received a $25,000 grant to assist small businesses in the neighborhood with COVID-19 reopening and recovery efforts; in 2019 the organization crowdfunded $42,150 and received a $40,000 matching grant from MassDevelopment to make streetscape improvements to Congress Street; in 2018, the organization crowdfunded $50,250 and received a $50,000 matching grant from MassDevelopment to fund public art and streetscape improvements at the Punto Urban Art Museum; and in 2017 the organization crowdfunded $40,000 and received a $30,000 matching grant from MassDevelopment to build the 2,000-square-foot Espacio Community Program Space.

"We are so appreciative of this support from MassDevelopment & the Brownfields Fund, which will allow us not only to address critical remediation issues, but allow other project funds to remain focused on important quality of life investments for residents," said North Shore CDC CEO Mickey Northcutt.

MassDevelopment oversees the Brownfields Redevelopment Fund, which helps to transform vacant, abandoned, or underused industrial or commercial properties by financing the environmental assessment and remediation of brownfield sites in “Economically Distressed Areas” of the Commonwealth. From the Fund’s inception in 1998 through FY20, it has supported 747 awards for a total investment of more than $108 million. In December 2020, the Baker-Polito Administration announced $1.25 million in Brownfields funding for five projects across Massachusetts.

MassDevelopment, the state’s finance and development agency, works with businesses, nonprofits, banks, and communities to stimulate economic growth across the Commonwealth. During FY2020, MassDevelopment financed or managed 341 projects generating investment of more than $2.69 billion in the Massachusetts economy. These projects are estimated to create or support 10,871 jobs and build or preserve 1,787 housing units.