Historic Mill Site Gets Multi-Family Makeover in Melrose

By Veronica Grecu, Associate Editor The transformation of an historic mill building into an apartment complex is under way in Melrose, Mass. Wood Partners is redeveloping the 129-year-old Boston Rubber Shoe Co. factory site into a 300-unit multi-family property. As the Boston Globe [...]

The transformation of an historic mill building into an apartment complex is under way in Melrose, Mass. Wood Partners is redeveloping the 129-year-old Boston Rubber Shoe Co. factory site into a 300-unit multi-family property.

As the Boston Globe reported, Wood recently started construction of on the 212-unit first phase of the project, dubbed Alta Stone Place.  The Atlanta-based firm acquired the property in May from a previous developer, Stone Place L.P. A former mill building will house 93 units, and tjhe additoonal units will be developed in three new wood-frame buildings with ground-level podium parking. A century-old, eight-story-tall brick smokestack will remain as a signature element and the centerpiece of the complex’s garden. Completion of the first phase is scheduled for Feb. 2013, the newspaper reported.

Courtesy of Wood Partners

In detailing the project last May, Wood said that it would retain and enhance the historic building’s original features and style. Designed by Bargmann Hendrie + Archetype, Inc., the units in the mill will feature 10-foot plus ceilings with exposed wood beams, brick exterior walls, and oversized wood mill windows.

Following completion of phase one, Wood will build another 88 units in two buildings on a nearby 2.6-site. A mill building deemed historically insignificant will be demolished to make way for the project, the Globe reported.

Elsewhere in local residential development, AvalonBay Communities Inc. broke ground on a Back Bay apartment project that will complete the Prudential Center complex. Designed by Elkus Manfredi Architects, the 242,000-square-foot Avalon Exeter will offer 187 market-rate units—20 of them penthouses—ground-floor retail and  131 parking spaces in the Prudential Center garage, the Globe reports.