Boston Housing Authority

Departments > Planning and Real Estate Development > Mixed-Finance Development > Washington Beech

Washington Beech

Washington-Beech1 Washington-Beech1

Year Completed: 2011
Total units: 206
Total Development Cost: $112 million
Developer: Trinity Financial, Inc.
Management Company: Trinity Management Co.

Awards:

  • Boston Housing Authority’s First 100% Smoke-Free Housing
  • Certified LEED Gold

Contact: For more information or to apply for housing contact Tasha Davis at 617-477-8661 or by email.

Project Background

Bulit in the early 1950s, the 266 apartments at Washington Beech had been home to both long time Boston residents and newcomers who have created a rich community that reflects their diverse cultures and shared values.  In recent years, facing mounting obsolescence and physical distress at the development, the residents of Washing Beech and BHA came together to develop a shared vision for the future of the community.  And as a testament to the strength of that vision, in early 2008, comprehensive redevelopment involving the demolition and reconstruction of the entire site in two phases over four years.  The redevelopment of the Washington Beech publich housing community was completed in Octover 2011.

The Washington Beech HOPE VI revitalization was guided by the following principles:

  • Provide quality rehousing options for all WB residents, including those who have indicated a preference to retrun to the redeveloped Washington Beech community.
  • Increased the number of affordable housing opportunities available throughout the Boston area in response to the affordabilitiy crisis in this high housing cost area
  • Transform the Washington Beech site into an amenity for the neighborhood that catalyzes private investment in the surrounding Roslindale community.
  • Strengthen resident self-sufficiency through coordinatoed case management services to all current and future residents of Washington Beech.

BHA and its development partner, Trinity Financials, Inc., have created 206 new affordable rental units. Beyond Washington Beech, BHA has provided 56 families with HOPE VI-funded subordinate mortgages so that they can become homeowners, and BHA created 80 new project-based voucher units.

At Washington Beech specifically we have created a new community at a lower density and with stronger ties to the surrounding Roslindale neighborhood:

  • At the most prominent corner of the development, the corner of Washington and Beech Streets, now stands a newly constructed midrise apartment building whose ground floor provides ample space for community uses: a large meeting room, computer center, a kitchen and food pantry, offices for management, resident services, tenant association.
  • The corner building houses all of the one-bedroom apartments, appropriate for single residents and couples, including Washington Beech’s seniors who have expressed their desire for easy access to Washington Street.
  • Most of the site has been replaced by new townhouse-style homes with individual stoops and decks or private backyards appropriate for larger families with children.
  • New roads have been built to ensure that all townhouse entries will front on a street with parking nearby. 
  • A half-acre park that has now been completed in the center of the development will provide for active and passive recreation

Green Construction and Sustainable Development

Energy efficiency and other principles of sustainable development underlie the plans for Washington Beech, and we are thrilled that the development has been awarded LEED Gold certification, a rigorous assessment of the many green features of the redevelopment. For example, from a site-planning perspective, many of the new structures re-use existing foundation work, which achieves considerable cost savings to the development. From a community perspective, the redevelopment supports public transportation (which Washington Beech residents and their neighbors rely on heavily) through the construction of a bus shelter at the corner of Washington and Beech streets for the benefit of the entire community. Inside the new structures, all residential units and community space have been built to exceed Energy Star standards, including features such as high-efficiency condensing boilers for heating and hot water; demand control ventilation for all common areas; Energy Star rated lighting with occupancy control sensors; ultra low flow toilets; and light stat thermostats for night setbacks. The entire redevelopment has successfully achieved LEED Gold certification.