New Investment Advances Boston Tower Construction to Mid-2019 Start. Construction on Boston’s largest office tower in decades is poised to start in mid-2019 after the project attracted a major new investor. Carr Properties, of Washington, D.C., is taking a 50 percent stake in One Congress, a 1 million-square-foot (92,903-square-meter), 528-foot (161-meter) skyscraper proposed to rise atop part of the Government Center Garage. The investment will put developers in the position to start work in 2019 and to open the building in 2022, said Tom O’Brien, managing partner of HYM Investment Group, which is leading the project.
The tower is the centerpiece of the developer’s six-building plan for redeveloping the garage. Work on the first building — an apartment and condo tower on New Sudbury Street — has already begun. But the office tower is key to demolishing portions of the parking facility, which hangs over Congress Street, and will unlock space for a plaza of smaller buildings along the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway. National Real Estate Advisors, the real estate arm of a pension fund for union electricians, has been the lead investor on the $1.5 billion complex, known as Bulfinch Crossing, since it was proposed in 2014.
Carr, which has a $3.2 billion portfolio of office buildings in and around Washington, will partner with NREA to finance construction of One Congress. Terms of the deal were not made public, but the building is expected to cost $800 million to $1 billion, which would value Carr’s investment at $400 million to $500 million. Before work starts, the developer may need to sign at least one major tenant.
A significant number of companies have recently signed leases for major expansions in Boston, including Verizon, which will fill 440,000 square feet (40,877 square meters) in a new office tower at North Station. Amazon has a deal to fill a new building in the Seaport, while DivcoWest plans to deliver the 430,000-square-foot (39,948-square-meter) Cambridge Crossing Building in East Cambridge, which is set to become the North American headquarters of Philips Healthcare.
Additional office developments in the area include Millennium Partners’ office-and-condo tower at Winthrop Square; Houston-based Hines, which has plans for an office-and-condo high-rise above South Station; and Don Chiofaro, who says he’ll soon file plans for his long-stalled 900,000-square-foot (83,612-square-meter) tower on the site of the Boston Harbor Garage.
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