Affordable Downtown Housing: More Than An Oxymoron?

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(Robbie Shade/Flickr)
(Robbie Shade/Flickr)

It's no secret that living in greater Boston isn't cheap.

But now, a developer is trying to bridge the gap between expensive properties and wavering incomes by proposing a building of so-called "workforce" apartments. Proposed for a rare plot of undeveloped land between the TD Garden and the North End, rent would start at less than $3 per square foot — about half the going rate for the neighborhood.

To qualify as tenants, two-person families would have to have an income of between roughly $23,000 and $130,000.


Peter Spellios, executive vice president of Related Beal, LLC.


The Boston Globe: "Workforce" Apartments Pitched For Boston

  • “This is a new model we hope will be replicated in Boston and other cities around the country,” said Peter Spellios, the company’s executive vice president. “We had an opportunity to do something unique and creative to address the extreme lack of affordable and workforce housing downtown." The average cost of the apartments would be $2.50 per square foot each month, the company said, compared to a market rate of around $4.50. Unusual for downtown, the project would include three-bedroom apartments to accommodate larger families.

WBUR: A Neglected Market: Mayor Walsh Calls For More Middle-Class Housing

  • Mayor Marty Walsh is calling for 53,000 additional housing units in Boston, with more than one-third of those specifically for middle-income earners.

This segment aired on April 30, 2015.


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