Friday, January 29, 2016

HBI Forges Partnerships to Increase Capacity for Neighborhood Revitalization- Preservation Partnering - Part III

This is Part 3 and the last in a series of blogs in which HBI’s Jeffrey Morgan presents preservation partnering scenarios and the opportunities they present to steward historic and long vacant or blighted properties to new economic uses. Part 1 discussed the redevelopment of the Roslindale Substation in partnership with Roslindale Village Main Streets (RVMS) and HBI’s for-profit partner, Peregrine Group, LLC. Part 2 presented the planned redevelopment of the historic Fowler Clark Epstein  farm in Mattapan in partnership with three other non-profits, Urban Farming Institute (UFI), The Trust for Public Land (TPL), and North Bennet Street School (NBSS).

Sip & Spoke Bike Kitchen, Upham’s Corner, Dorchester

The preservation of historic buildings is not only about the redevelopment and rehabilitation of the building structure. It also includes the need to find compatible uses and, within the historic tax credit structure, income generating businesses in a rental structure – therefore tenants. In addition, given that many historic buildings in neighborhood business districts have small size retail spaces, the work of preservation often follows the path of small startups or what are often called “micro” businesses which are generally defined as single owner-operator enterprises that typically have less than 10 employees.

Finding the operators of these micro businesses for historic rehabilitation projects can be challenging and their business models are often risky which is why, in part, market driven real estate developers are often not interested in the smaller historic redevelopment projects. So a preservation partnership model that couples non-profit preservation real estate developers with micro-business entrepreneurs through the work of an organization that provides financial support for both the real estate developer and technical assistance for the business owner can leverage the capacity and skills of all partners to maximize the potential for greater success and effectiveness in neighborhood redevelopment and revitalization.      

A big thank you to our supporters in 2015!

Historic Boston is very grateful to everyone who supported the organization’s end-of-the-year fundraising campaign. You – our donors– are also our partners in preserving Boston’s past and building strong neighborhoods.   
All donations to HBI- large and small- helped at year’s end, and launched a healthy new year for HBI with exciting project activity planned or underway in Roslindale, Upham’s Corner, Mattapan and Roxbury  
A few highlights of things to watch for:

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Boston Landmarks Commission Names Roxbury’s Kittredge House and Downtown’s Winthrop-Carter Building Boston Landmarks

Historic Boston reported in December that the Boston Landmarks Commission entertained the petition to name the 1834 Alvah Kittredge a Boston Landmark, but we are honored to announce this week that the Commission formally designated the property a Landmark.    At the same time, the Commission also landmarked the Winthrop-Carter Building at One Water Street in downtown Boston, a structure built in 1894. 

Both of these architecturally and historically important buildings will be afforded a high degree of protection, requiring all property owners in the future to seek approvals for exterior improvements or changes to the structures.  By doing so, the architectural integrity of the buildings will be preserved.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Sip and Spoke Bike Kitchen Needs You!

Dorchester entrepreneur Noah Hicks recently launched an Indie Go Go campaign to raise $50,000 of start-up capital for his new business -- The Sip and Spoke Bike Kitchen in the historic Upham’s Corner Comfort Station.   
A bike repair and coffee shop, Sip and Spoke Bike Kitchen is located on Columbia Road near the new Fairmount line and will be a transformative project in the Upham’s Corner neighborhood, adding jobs, fostering a local business, and enhancing a blighted building.  In a short time, Sip and Spoke has raised over $8,000 of the $50,000 funding need.   

Friday, January 8, 2016

An Evening with HBI's Friends and Neighbors

HBI held its annual holiday open house this past Tuesday evening at the Eustis Street Firehouse. Friends and neighbors braved the cold to gather for a celebration of 2015’s successes and raise a glass to the promises of 2016. 

Our guests enjoyed food and drink from local businesses in Dudley Square, including Castillo BeerWine & Liquors, Haley House Cafe and Dudley Café

Thank you to all those who attended, and to those who could not, you were missed, but we look forward to seeing everyone in 2016!  Happy New Year!