Your Guide to Universities in Worcester, MA

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When it comes to four-year colleges and universities,Worcester has an impressive list to choose from. Here is a quick guide to these great local universities.

Assumption College

Since 1904, Assumption College has been educating minds while nurturing the spirit. This institution is known today as a top New England Catholic college. Assumption offers liberal arts and science programs.

Becker College

Founded in 1887, Becker’s philosophy is to equip students to contribute to a global society. The on-campus learning experience encompasses academic excellence, creative expression, and social responsibility.

Clark University

Empowering students to make a difference is what Clark is all about. In 2015 Forbes ranked it the 16th most entrepreneurial research university in America.

College of the Holy Cross

Holy Cross boasts a well-educated faculty, with 96 percent holding doctoral degrees. Founded in 1843, the college honors its Jesuit heritage.

University of Massachusetts Medical School Worcester

UMMS is a pioneer in education and research. U.S. News & World Report recognizes the university as a leading medical school for primary care education.

Worcester Polytechnic Institute

The Wall Street Journal rated WPI as a top school for classroom teaching and scholarly research. Founded in 1865, the institute focuses on science and engineering.

Worcester State College

Working to get students career ready, Worcester State is known as one of the safest colleges in America. It’s also recognized for its environmental responsibility.

Planning for Worcester’s Future

John McGrail

Being a developer involves more than purchasing, renovating and managing properties. A lot of planning goes into creating successful developments. One of MG2’s strengths lies in planning, and that is reflected in the master plan we developed for Worcester’s Grid District. 

Worcester has been poised for growth for years. The city recognized it with its master plan for the Theater District and for the overall revitalization of the Downtown., MG2 had previously amassed 510 residential units, 300 parking spaces and approximately 60,000 square feet of retail space (with the potential to develop an additional 350,000 square feet.) Maximizing the potential of this investment requires significant planning. Through this master plan, the Grid District marries the history of the buildings and location with a cool, trendy “live and play” atmosphere that appeals to Worcester’s large student and young professional population.

The Grid District consists of an eclectic mix of buildings that currently house students and local businesses, as well as a number of vacant parcels primed for potential downtown development opportunities. Our master plan targets underutilized retail spaces and bolsters those spaces in multiple phases to create a bustling economic presence in Downtown Worcester.

Historic restoration is another key feature for the Grid District. Replacing windows in character with historic condition, updating brick facades, improving lighting and restoring storefronts to their original glory are just a few elements detailed throughout the plan. While the integrity of these buildings are being preserved, residential units are being outfitted with the modern amenities that renters desire.

Creating a lively urban community is a unique opportunity MG2 is excited to bring to Worcester. With that in mind, we have planned for spaces that can be utilized as pop up retail, temporary event spaces and “third spaces” (the stop between work and home) areas, while also developing opportunities for converting alleys into community meeting areas.

The Grid District is more than residential buildings. Once complete, the results of the master plan will transform MG2’s space in downtown Worcester into a highly desirable place to work, live and play.

Worcester’s Grid District: Why MG2 saw opportunity where others didn’t

John McGrail

Worcester, long touted as a college town, is finally beginning to look the part. Home to 12 renowned colleges and universities and nearly 38,000 students, the city has a highly educated workforce that companies are competing for, making Worcester home to a growing and thriving business community.

An influx of economic investment and the desire for city living, with more and more young professionals seeking to live in cities that offer a variety of amenities within walking distance, Worcester is poised for growth as a residential destination. The City itself recognized this, developing a master plan to transform its Hanover Theater District. Over the past several years MG2 has acquired significant real estate holdings in Worcester, now totaling 510 residential units, 300 parking spaces, approximately 60,000 square feet of retail space and the potential to develop up to 350,000 additional square feet of mixed use space.

MG2’s six acres of prime real estate, named “The Grid District,” is an eclectic mix of buildings that are historic, as well as some that are primed for redevelopment. The Grid District sits adjacent to the new City Square development and the Hanover Theater, as well as a number of the City’s civic institutions. Our parcels are at the hub of both east-west and north-south orientations – literally forming a web of interconnectedness that solidifies The Grid as a landmark destination in Worcester.

For more information on the Grid District, MG2 has launched a new website, thegriddistrict.com. Here you can find more information on the project, including specific building amenities, retail options and recreational opportunities throughout The Grid.

MG2 Year End Recap

John McGrail

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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