BRA Approves Two Mixed-Use Projects in Roxbury

The Boston Redevelopment Authority (BRA) has picked two teams of developers who will transform a vacant site in Roxbury into a mixed-use community that will serve as a gateway to the bustling Dudley Square.

The Boston Redevelopment Authority (BRA) has picked two teams of developers who will transform a vacant site in Roxbury into a mixed-use community that will serve as a gateway to the bustling Dudley Square.

Totaling nearly 3.5 acres, the property is made up of two adjoining portions of land—known as Parcel 9 and Parcel 10—located on both sides of Melnea Cass Boulevard between Washington Street and Shawmut Avenue. Both have been vacant since the 1960s and jointly owned by BRA and the state Transportation Department. According to city officials, both parcels are part of the Roxbury area Strategic Master Plan, a 10- to 20-year development plan adopted in 2004.

BRA gave the green light for the 1.3-acre Parcel 9 Project to Boston-based Urbanica Design + Development to build a $63 million complex that would include a two-story community and commercial building, a 87,200-square-foot hotel with 150 guest rooms adjacent to Ramsey Park and a five-story, 52-unit residential building with ground floor retail space. The project also includes 139 parking spaces and the creation of 800 to 1,000 construction jobs. Construction at the site is scheduled to start in spring 2014.

The 2.1-acre Parcel 10 Project right across the street will be developed by Madison Tropical, LLC, a $32 million joint venture between Madison Park Community Development Corporation and Tropical Foods International. According to the developer’s plans, the existing Tropical Foods supermarket building will be upgraded and repurposed into a mixed-use complex with 66 residential units as well as retail and parking space, while the supermarket itself will be housed by a new, 40,000-square-foot facility. The developer hopes to break ground on the project in fall 2013.

Parcels 9 and 10 are located about a quarter mile from Dudley Square, where city officials broke ground in March on a $115-million plan to redevelop the long-abandoned Ferdinand department store and two adjacent buildings.

Renderings courtesy of the Boston Redevelopment Authority