Sunday, July 27, 2014

The Cobbler Gets New Shoes

The important work of preserving historic neighborhood business centers continues as HBI takes on the next phase of work on the oldest remaining structure from Hyde Park’s settlement, the Bonnie-Keith Block (1868). Home to an immigrant cobbler and his family for the last 68 years and now more commonly known as the Vertullo Building, this property is undergoing phase two restoration by HBI, that addresses important maintenance issues and the rehabilitation of the exterior of the upper portions of the building. 

The work involves new roofing including the Mansard and historically appropriate windows, siding, and trim. Possibly the most important change will be from the shake shingle siding back to the original clapboard siding which was discovered mostly intact under the siding of east elevation of the building. As with the recently completed storefront renovation, this additional work will significantly transform the character of the building and bring greater distinction to this end of Cleary Square.  

Rehabilitating the older mixed-use structures in neighborhood business districts does not come easily and often requires patience and persistence. There are many complexities to overcome in preserving buildings that house both residents and retail stores not the least of which is raising the funds needed to complete the work. Renovation of the Bonnie-Keith Block could not be done without the help of many community partners and the use of Massachusetts Rehabilitation Tax Credits. HBI wishes to once again thank all the donors to the Trilogy Fund, the City of Boston Department of Neighborhood Development, Hyde Park Main Streets, and our new partners, Blue Hills Charitable Foundation and Blue Hills Bank for making this rehabilitation possible. HBI looks forward to the rehabilitation of the Bonnie-Keith Block having a very positive economic and visual impact in Hyde Park. 

Left to Right: Julie Beckham, Director of Community Affairs, Blue Hills Bank, Bill Parent, President and CEO, Blue Hills Bank, Kathy Kottaridis, Executive Director, Historic Boston Incorporated, Emily Patrick, Executive Director, Hyde Park Main Streets, Pat Tierney, Owner, Tierney Realty Group

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