MG2 finished 2015 out strong, closing nearly one deal per week over the last two months of the year. The majority of those deals were closed in East Boston, an area historically ignored by real estate investors. While the cost per square foot in downtown Boston has been steadily rising, exceeding $1,000 per square foot in 2015, we are confident in the middle-market potential of East Boston. We will continue to invest in the redevelopment of that area of the city; providing quality, workforce housing options.
We were able to close on seven East Boston properties in 2015, totaling more than 70,000 square feet. Additionally, we have closed more East Boston properties in early 2016, bringing our total East Boston portfolio to 10 assets, and will retain a company focus on continuing to find value in East Boston throughout 2016.
Moving into 2016, we are also expanding our focus to include the opportunities available to revitalize downtown Lynn. In 2014, we were able to acquire an eight-story iconic flatiron building in the city center. We are planning a gut renovation of the building and restoring its exterior to its 1914 glory. Once complete, 49 apartments will be made available with an additional 3,800 square feet of ground floor retail space. “This is a very interesting project. It involves working with the City of Lynn, the State Office of Housing and Economic Development and Historic Tax Credit experts to bring market rate units and an active retail space to Central Square,” said Joseph Donovan, MG2 Vice President.
Lastly, we are in the midst of a massive repositioning project in Worcester on Franklin Street at Portland Street. This mixed-use development is nearly two million square feet, covering an entire city block and involving over 500 individual residential units that we have acquired over the past 10 years. The majority of the project consists of student and young professional housing, with an official launch of the new vision and redevelopment plans in May.
As we push forward into 2016, we are keeping an eye on real estate trends in the greater Boston region, and one that we are particularly interested in is the overall cost of construction. As a vertically integrated firm, MG2 has its own construction arm, Alaris Construction, enabling us to capitalize on cost savings and quality work through self-performed construction, similar to our work in downtown Lynn.
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