Earlier this summer, the Department of Conservation and Recreation’s (DCR) Historic Curatorship Program put out a Request for Proposals (RFP) for the historic Charles River Speedway HeadquartersBuilding in the Allston/Brighton neighborhood of Boston. The Headquarters building, built in 1899 is all that remains of the Charles River Speedway. The Speedway consisted of a mile long race course for horse cart, or “sulky racing” as well as a course for bike racing. It was developed in the wake of increased automobile traffic on other main roads like Cambridge and Beacon, which had left little room for recreational vehicles. Until the 1960’s, the Speedway stretched all the way to the Harvard Football Stadium. After that time, with no more Speedway to look after, the Headquarters building fell into disrepair. However, it is a beautiful building, with a great story and a layout that offers many options for redevelopment. With this in mind, HBI just finished a submission for consideration by DCR.
HBI has joined forces with Peregrine Group, LLC, a real estate development corporation operating out of Rhode Island, to put together this proposal. If the name sounds familiar, it is because Peregrine is currently working with HBI on the redesign of the Roslindale Substation. However, they have also done significant historically conscious work all over New England and beyond. Together HBI and Peregrine have come up with an exciting proposal to transform the Speedway Headquarters into a 25-unit residential community. The proposed design would offer rental housing to graduate students and professionals seeking to be close to one of the many nearby educational institutions or one of a quickly growing number of businesses based in the area. An interior courtyard, an original aspect of the building’s design will offer residents a beautiful green oasis in a neighborhood that is becoming increasingly popular.
We are very excited by the many possibilities that the Speedway Headquarters has to offer, and are confident that the proposal that we have put together with Peregrine is a good and sustainable preservation solution for this site. So, for now, keep your fingers crossed for us!