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$80.5K for Point Housing & Health Center

North Shore CDC & North Shore Community Health Advance Development at Decade-Long Vacant Lot, Underutilized Building in Salem’s Point Neighborhood with Help from MassDevelopment
September 21, 2021

Matthew Mogavero, 857-248-0868

Nicole Roebuck, North Shore CDC, 704-906-8054 

SALEM, Mass. – MassDevelopment has awarded $80,500 from the Brownfields Redevelopment Fund to North Shore Community Development Coalition, Inc. (North Shore CDC) to perform environmental site assessments on four parcels in the Point neighborhood in Salem. North Shore CDC will collaborate with North Shore Community Health (NSCH) to build the South River Revitalization Project at the site, which will include a 50-unit affordable senior housing facility and nonprofit center featuring a state-of-the-art health center, consolidated NSCH administrative offices, and other office space for area nonprofits. The parcels, located at 9 Peabody St. and 73, 75, and 83-85 Lafayette St., are situated at the entrance to the Point neighborhood and include parking lots that have been vacant for more than 10 years and a mix of underutilized commercial and retail properties situated in one building. A significant portion of that building will be demolished, while a current tenant, North Shore Bank, will remain at the development post construction. 

“Community development corporations and other nonprofits have been pivotal to the Commonwealth’s efforts to revitalize neighborhoods and increase affordable housing and other services in urban areas across the state,” said Housing and Economic Development Secretary Mike Kennealy, who serves as chair of MassDevelopment’s Board of Directors. “Administered by MassDevelopment, the Brownfields Redevelopment Fund provides these organizations with the capital they need to carry out necessary site assessment and remediation activities that prepare challenging sites for redevelopment.” 

“Area seniors will have modern housing and residents of the Point neighborhood will have access to health care and other services in a convenient, first-rate facility,” said MassDevelopment President and CEO Dan Rivera. “Our Brownfields grant will play a small role in helping North Shore Community Development Coalition advance this crucial project. MassDevelopment is proud to continue our successful partnership with North Shore CDC by supporting another of its transformative investments in the Point.”

Located at a highly visible corner of Derby Street and Lafayette Street in the Point, this development will include a nonprofit center featuring North Shore Community Health’s new health center and administrative offices. The organization currently provides health care services at 47 Congress Street in downtown Salem, a building that can no longer keep pace with demand. The nonprofit center will also include space for other area nonprofits to locate. Additionally, the development will include a new 50-unit affordable housing facility to be managed by North Shore CDC. The units will be rented to a mix of households earning up to 50% of the area median income ($47,000 for a one-person household) and up to 30% of the area median income ($28,200 for a one-person household). 

“I’m grateful to MassDevelopment for the agency’s continued support for and investment in Salem and the Point neighborhood, especially,” said Salem Mayor Kim Driscoll. “This funding will help the North Shore CDC and North Shore Community Health continue their evaluation of a potentially landmark project that would create more affordable housing for Salem seniors and allow the community health center to expand and modernize the critical services they provide to our residents.”

“We are so grateful for the generous support of MassDevelopment through the years,” said North Shore Community Development Coalition, Inc. CEO Mickey Northcutt. “And now on the South River Revitalization Project, an important step forward in connecting the historic Point neighborhood to the downtown area.”

“We are very excited to see the culmination of many years of work toward a new Salem Family Health Center,” said North Shore Community Health Center President and CEO Margaret Brennan.  “MassDevelopment’s critical support to NSCDC will be instrumental in helping us realize our goal.”  

MassDevelopment has previously supported North Shore CDC projects in the Point neighborhood. In March 2021, the organization used a $170,000 award from the Brownfields Redevelopment Fund to advance its affordable housing project dubbed “The Lighthouses”; in 2018, the organization used a $3.4 million tax-exempt bond to buy and renovate the Harbor-Lafayette Homes; in 2016 the organization used a $12.9 million tax-exempt bond to buy and renovate the Congress Street Residences; in 2014, the organization used a $9.8 million tax-exempt bond to buy and renovate the Salem Point Apartments; and in 2012 the organization used a $166,513 award from the Brownfields Redevelopment Fund to preserve 77 units of affordable housing.  

Additionally, North Shore CDC has been awarded a total of $155,000 from MassDevelopment’s Commonwealth Places program to fund five placemaking projects in the Point. In 2021, the organization received a $10,000 grant to improve and drive foot traffic to four storefronts at 117 Lafayette St. In 2020, the organization received a $25,000 grant to assist small businesses in the neighborhood with COVID-19 reopening and recovery efforts; in 2019 the organization crowdfunded $42,150 and received a $40,000 matching grant from MassDevelopment to make streetscape improvements to Congress Street; in 2018, the organization crowdfunded $50,250 and received a $50,000 matching grant from MassDevelopment to fund public art and streetscape improvements at the Punto Urban Art Museum; and in 2017 the organization crowdfunded $40,000 and received a $30,000 matching grant from MassDevelopment to build the 2,000-square-foot Espacio Community Program Space.

MassDevelopment oversees the Brownfields Redevelopment Fund, which helps to transform vacant, abandoned, or underused industrial or commercial properties by financing the environmental assessment and remediation of brownfield sites in “Economically Distressed Areas” of the Commonwealth. From the Fund’s inception in 1998 through FY20, it has supported 747 awards for a total investment of more than $108 million. The Brownfields Redevelopment Fund makes awards on a rolling basis as well as through an annual competitive round, which is now part of the Commonwealth’s Community One Stop for Growth, a single application portal and collaborative review process for community and economic development grant programs that make targeted investments based on a Development Continuum. Awards to Brownfields applicants who applied through the FY2022 Community One Stop for Growth are anticipated to be announced later this year.

MassDevelopment, the state’s development finance agency and land bank, works with businesses, nonprofits, banks, and communities to stimulate economic growth across the Commonwealth. During FY2020, MassDevelopment financed or managed 341 projects generating investment of more than $2.69 billion in the Massachusetts economy. These projects are estimated to create or support 10,871 jobs and build or preserve 1,787 housing units.