Boston Housing Authority

Departments > Planning and Real Estate Development > Mixed-Finance Development > Orchard Gardens

Orchard Gardens

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Year completed: 1999
Total units: 331
Total development cost: $159 million
Developer: Trinity Financial, Inc. and Madison Park Development Corp
Management company: Trinity Management Company
Contact: For more information or to apply for housing contact Sharon Russell-Mack at 617-445-7881 or by email.

When the HOPE VI application for Orchard Park was submitted to HUD, Orchard Park was considered one of the most severely distressed developments in the BHA's portfolio. Its buildings were dilapidated, its name synonymous with crime, and its residents were isolated from everything around them. In fact, the distress at Orchard Park had spread into the surrounding neighborhoods and they, too, had fallen into a state of disrepair and abandonment.

In 1996, Orchard Park was award a HOPE VI grant which provided an extraordinary opportunity to change the very nature of the neighborhood. The revitalization of Orchard Park was a catalyst for reuniting the disparate parts of Lower Roxbury, turning Orchard Park into a synergistic part of the community with the following accomplishments.

  • Complete redevelopment of the current site, via rehabilitation, demolition, and new construction, to create 331 high-quality housing units of a scope and scale reflective of neighborhood standards. 
  • Creation of 160 new housing units to link the Orchard Park site to the nearby and stable Mount Pleasant neighborhood. Housing will fill in vacant lots in this "transitional" area, drawing the strengths of the new Orchard Park and Mount Pleasant together. 
  • Reorganizing the site to create a typical family housing neighborhood and remove the "institutional" feel. All efforts have been made to combine various elements to create visual interest and identity. 
  • Relinking the development to the surrounding neighborhood by building new public streets and green spaces in accordance with the existing landscape. 

In addition, the program includes a new school that has required a joint planning process between the BHA and the Boston School and Parks and Recreation Departments. The Boston School Department designed a new K-8 school, which was developed on a portion of the original public housing site. The school design and the new public streets contributed to the need to reconfigure the existing park. Due to state law, the reconfiguration needed to be approved by home rule legislation that the BHA filed. Overall, the redevelopment impacted the original 16-acre site and an additional 4 acres in the surrounding neighborhood.