Abby's House slated for $16.2M renovation

April 11, 2018 : Worcester Business Journal, by Zachary Comeau

Worcester women's services nonprofit Abby's House will perform a $16.2-million renovation of its 108-year-old building in part using a $8.2-million tax-exempt bond from MassDevelopment announced Tuesday.

The 53-unit, 40,000-square-foot building at 52 High St. functions as housing support facility for homeless and low-income women.

Planned renovations include the addition of two units, infrastructure upgrades, updated accessibility, a reconfigured entrance, an elevator and accessible kitchens and bedrooms.

According to the organization's website, it has already raised the majority of a planned $2 million to help fund the project.

Abby's House announced Wednesday on Facebook renovations are already underway.

Boston-based Eastern Bank purchased the $8.2-million bond, according to MassDevelopment.

"The preservation and enhancement of critically-needed housing at 52 High Street will positively affect the lives of women and families in the Worcester region for decades to come," said Abby's House Executive Director Stephanie Page said in a statement. "Abby's House is grateful to MassDevelopment, Eastern Bank, and all of our wonderful supporters who are making this important renovation possible."

When reached by phone Wednesday, page said the project is scheduled to wrap up next spring, and the organization will remain in the building for the duration of the construction.

According to Worcester property records, the structure was built in 1910, but Page said the buildign was erected in the 1920s by the Sisters of Mercy and was turned over to Abby's House in 2001.

According to Page, the organization knew the building needed extensive upgrades. A project was planned in 2006, but was abandoned just a year later due to the economic recession.

The project was revived in 2014, and construction finally started last month.

"It's been a dream every since Abby's moved into the building," she said.