The towers to your above right represent the biggest of the would-be spires rising on the site of the Government Center Garage in downtown Boston. The cylindrical one would stretch to 528 feet and, at 1 million square feet with the capacity to hold up to 5,000 workers, "would be the largest office building under construction in the city," according to the Globe's Tim Logan. It's designed by Pelli Clarke Pelli and CBT Architects.
The residential portion of the Government Center Garage redo, designed by CBT, is supposed to be 480 feet, or 45 stories, and contain 486 apartments as well as ground-floor retail. Both towers would be developed by HYM Investment, which got the city's O.K. two years ago for what could be a six-building project with 812 residences and a hotel, but that needs individual design approvals for each tower. Both of these rendered towers are, of course,quite tall by Boston standards. Settle in.
Beige Book Report - First District BOSTON
Residential Real Estate
Residential real estate markets continue to exhibit strong performance across the First District, consistent with the seller's market environment present throughout 2015. For single-family homes, closed sales increased in November on a year-over-year basis in every state. Massachusetts experienced its sixth straight month of year-over-year increases in closed sales. Median sales prices were generally stable, showing modest increases in most states. Pending sales were up in every state with the exception of Maine, indicating a strong outlook going into the end of the year. A contact in New Hampshire says that residential real estate is experiencing its best year since the recession. The market for condominiums showed similar positive sales trends; closed and pending sales increased across the board when compared to last year. Median sales prices for condominiums, however, were mixed. Prices increased in three states, but decreased in the other three. November saw Massachusetts' largest year-over-year increase in condo prices of 2015 to date.
Inventory continues to be an issue throughout the First District. Available homes for sale, available months' supply, and average days on market were consistently decreasing on a year-over-year basis for both single-family homes and condos. Both supply side constraints (limited construction) and healthy demand contribute to this. Contacts cite the improved employment situation as a driver of demand. Many also report that buyers were motivated to purchase in the months leading up to December due to the anticipation of increasing interest rates.
The consensus among industry contacts is that the market is strong and expected to continue to perform well in 2016. A contact in Connecticut cites the mild weather as a contributor to increased activity in the normally slow holiday season. A contact in Boston reports that "sales increases in both markets are encouraging at this time of year which is typically slow." A New Hampshire contact notes that "more of the same is anticipated in 2016, but inventory and affordability challenges coupled with mortgage rate increases will likely keep any sort of monster growth in check." In spite of any potential concerns about increased interest rates, a Massachusetts contact indicates that he feels buyer demand will remain strong in the New Year.
Commercial Real Estate
Reports from First District commercial real estate contacts are for the most part little changed since last time. Office leasing demand remains robust in Boston and Portland and weak in Hartford. Leasing activity slowed modestly in the past month in Providence, where a contact perceives greater caution among business owners. The investment sales market for commercial real estate in Connecticut is described as somewhat less "frothy" than it was earlier in the fall, with "careful" bids, but demand still reportedly strong, by contrast with the leasing market. In Boston's investment sales market, contacts note that there are fewer bids per property on average than six months ago, but pricing remains robust. In both Boston and Portland, contacts note that the availability of large blocks of contiguous office space has become quite limited, a condition which--coupled with recent rent growth in both markets--is expected to lead to more office construction moving forward. Extending recent trends, new office projects in greater Boston are typically at least partly pre-leased rather than purely speculative.
In Providence, the outlook became more guarded amid expectations that the national election cycle may delay decisions; at the same time, however, for the first time since prior to the recession, developers in Rhode Island are discussing the possibility of new industrial construction. More industrial construction appears likely in Portland as well in 2016, where supply is quite limited and industrial business activity is reportedly strong and growing. The overall outlook for Portland's commercial real estate market for 2016 is very strong, while in Hartford the outlook remains weak in light of risks that more businesses will leave Connecticut or leave Hartford for suburban locations. On the plus side, a Hartford contact sees business and consumer sentiment as being buoyed by low oil and gasoline prices. The outlook remains optimistic for Boston's commercial real estate market, including leasing and investment sales, but contacts also note risks stemming from political and economic uncertainty at both the national and global level.
Email Cheryl Marsh to discuss what your property would sell for in this market. Cheryl@BostonLuxuryRealEstate.com
Courtesy of Federalreserve.gov
Residential Real Estate
Closed sales of both single-family homes and condominiums increased on a year-over-year basis in all six First District states in June. Contacts in the real estate industry say that sellers seem to be recovering from the harsh winter weather, and increased activity that began to show up in the last Beige Book continues. June represented the first year-over-year increase in closed sales of single-family homes for Massachusetts in 8 months. In Boston, where sales increased 10.2 percent, the volume numbers were near record highs. Median sales price increased from a year earlier on single-family homes in half the First District states and fell in Vermont, Connecticut, and Maine. Contacts in Massachusetts characterize the price appreciation as modest. Pending sales increased from July 2014 for nearly every state in the First District; the exception was condos in Maine. Inventory has decreased in every state but Connecticut. Massachusetts contacts say building and zoning laws continue to make new construction difficult. Contacts say low inventory has created a strong "sellers' market." Additionally, the available months of supply decreased in every state's single-family home market. The number of days spent on the market also decreased for both single-family homes and condos in most New England states.
Contacts express a generally optimistic outlook as the market continues to recover from the unseasonably slow winter. Some note that sellers may still be working on repairs before putting homes on the market and expect upward trends in sales and prices to continue into the fall. Many are weary of the inventory shortage and express concern that rising prices and potentially increasing interest rates will begin to present financing issues for buyers
Commercial Real Estate
Contacts in the First District give mostly upbeat reports concerning the region's commercial real estate markets. Extending trends reported last time, office rents in Boston continue to climb, office vacancy rates continue to fall, and investors are pushing prices for Boston's commercial properties to near all-time highs. A few Boston contacts note that, over the past couple of years, the pace of delivery of new office space has been slow relative to historical norms under similar market conditions, contributing to the recent surge in rents. However, contacts also report that there has been a modest uptick in office construction activity in Boston's Seaport and Financial districts, involving a combination of pre-leased space and unleased space, and in some cases incorporating additional uses such as retail and residential space. Construction of hospitals and related facilities also continues to expand in the Boston area.
In Providence, office leasing activity experienced only a very modest summer slowdown, maintaining a decent pace that is expected to strengthen come September; a contact in that city reports that the number of large blocks of vacant office space is down considerably in recent months. The Portland area continues to see strong leasing activity across the office, retail, and industrial sectors, pushing vacancy rates into the single digits, and the city's hotels are enjoying very high occupancy rates. In Hartford, leasing activity is light amid flat economic activity but the city's investment sales market remains strong and has recently attracted the interest of foreign buyers. A regional lender to commercial real estate notes that his bank saw a recent spike in loan payoffs resulting from an increased number of property sales among its borrowers; at the same time, it struggles to secure new lending opportunities amid fierce competition from insurance company lenders and from the commercial mortgage backed securities market.
The shortage of skilled construction workers and accompanying wage pressure continues to weigh on the outlook for construction activity in Boston--according to one contact, within the next six months relevant labor costs in the metropolitan area could rise to levels that would significantly curtail construction activity relative to current plans. With the exception of a Hartford contact--whose outlook is modestly pessimistic--most commercial real estate contacts are optimistic concerning leasing fundamentals moving forward, but Boston contacts continue to be "nervous" about current high sales prices and low capitalization rates.
Rare opportunity to lease at the full service Macallen building!
Pristine two bedroom, 2.5 bath penthouse with all the right touches! Spacious living room with vaulted ceiling,wet bar and wall-mounted linear fireplace. Cooks eat-in kitchen with gas cooking, stainless steel appliances and granite counters. Palatial private deck with Boston Harbor and Financial District views. Master bedroom with marble accented bath en-suite replete with a steam shower. Second bedroom with adjacent full marble accented full bath. Includes garage parking, central air, washer/dryer and South East exposures.
Built in 2007, the Macallen features 24/7 concierge and on-site professional management, elevator, garage parking and fitness center. 18,000 SF Garden with heated lap pool, gas grills and free Wi-Fi. Located on the edge of the South Boston neighborhood at the corner of Broadway and Dorchester Ave., the Macallen is close to the Financial District, Seaport and South End neighborhoods, the new Whole Foods Market, many fine restuarants, public transportation and major routes. The Macallen is Boston's first Gold LEED residential building! NOTE: The Macallen is a totally smoke-free building. Sorry no pets.
Rent: $5,500 per month unfurnished.
Term: One Year.
Contact Tim Marsh for more information or to set up a viewing of the property. Cell: 617-548-7145. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
First District Boston
Residential Real Estate
Homebuyer confidence is up across the First District, according to contacts. Accordingly, completed sales of single-family homes increased over-the-year to May 2015 in every state except Massachusetts, which posted a decline in completed sales for the same period. The decline in Massachusetts' completed sales is attributed in part to the state's long and harsh winter, which deterred foot traffic even into April. Record-low inventory levels in Massachusetts are reportedly causing changes in the contracting environment, such as an increased willingness of sellers to let buyers out of pending sales contracts and a trend of sellers' making a sale contingent on their finding a new home to purchase. Over-the-year to May 2015, supply of single-family homes decreased in every state in the First District while pending sales increased. Median Sales Price (MSP) of single-family homes increased over-the-year in four of six New England states, while in Connecticut MSP is flat and in Massachusetts MSP decreased. The latest decline in MSP is only the second for Massachusetts in 31 months and contacts insist that buyer demand remains strong. The condominium market saw mixed results. Completed condominium sales are down in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Vermont and up in Rhode Island, New Hampshire and Maine. MSP for condos increased in all states except Vermont and Maine. Massachusetts currently has only 1.8 months' supply of condominiums available, compared with 6 to 7 months' supply in a balanced market. Condominium inventory is down and pending condo sales are up in all six states. Contacts are generally optimistic about regional demand for residential real estate moving forward, despite voicing some uncertainty about the impact of eventual increases in interest rates.
Commercial Real Estate
Contacts report that office rent growth is accelerating in greater Boston, especially in urban submarkets. One contact describes Boston's office leasing market as the strongest in 50 years. Prices for investment properties in greater Boston continue to rise and, despite accelerating rent growth, contacts remain concerned that recent sales prices embed overly optimistic rent growth assumptions. In Portland, commercial leasing activity is steady at a solid pace and a modest amount of build-to-suit construction activity is reported. In Providence, deal volume is steady in both the office and industrial leasing markets and office vacancy rates are expected to decline moving forward amid lack of construction activity. Also in Rhode Island, business sentiment is described as optimistic in the face of modest improvements in current economic conditions and passage of a state budget that is seen as favoring job creation. Hartford's office leasing volume slowed in recent weeks, prompting one contact to downgrade his outlook for that market; however, Connecticut's investment sales market remains quite strong. Bank lenders in greater Boston are reportedly offering very low interest rates and generous terms for commercial real estate mortgages and construction loans. A common concern among contacts in the First District is the potential impact on investment demand for commercial properties once short-term interest rates start to rise.
Courtesy of Tom Acitelli of Curbed Boston
One of the understandable assumptions about Downtown Crossing's under-construction Millennium Tower was that foreign money would fill it. Who else would buy $9 million condos in Boston (or entire floors several times that amount)? Surely, Russian oligarchs, Saudi princes and English olde money would. Wrong.
Click the link below to read the rest of the article.
Tim Marsh - Broker/Owner
Marsh Properties, Inc.
Tim Marsh of Marsh Properties is pleased to announce that he has closed on the sale of his exclusive listing at the world-class Four Seasons across from the Boston Public Garden.
Listed at $3,875,000, he solicited four offers in four days and sold it at a price above the list price. This rare, front-facing 2,206 SF home offers stunning views of the Public Garden's Swan Pond from the 30' fireplaced living room and the eat-in kitchen! Features include two bedroom suites, den/3rd bedroom, powder room, laundry room and a deeded garage space.
Residents enjoy: One of Boston's most valuable and coveted addresses, complimentary fitness center and lap pool overlooking the Public Garden, available massage services, self-park or valet garage parking and 24/7 "white-glove" concierge services. The Four Seasons Hotel, rated AAA Five Diamond and Mobil 5-Star, sits below the condominium and offers in-room and pool-side dining. The Bristol Lounge and Bar is off the main lobby of the hotel.
NOTE: Marsh Properties focuses on the sale of luxury condominiums in Boston's top doorman buildings, townhouse condominiums along with single family homes.
Tim Marsh - Owner/Broker
Courtesy of the Banker & Trademan
A groundbreaking ceremony for the 61-story Four Seasons Hotel and Private Residences, which would become Boston's tallest residential building, is scheduled for Wednesday night in Back Bay.
Cambridge-based Carpenter & Co. is building the mixed-use project between Christian Science Plaza and the Prudential Center. The company received final approval from the Boston Redevelopment Authority in September 2013 for the project, which will include 211 hotel rooms on the lower floors, 180 high-rise condos, retail shops, restaurants and a 26-story apartment tower developed by Pritzker Realty Group of Chicago. Carpenter & Co. bought the hotel and condo development site at 1 Dalton St. in December for $65.6 million.
Boston Mayor Martin Walsh, Four Seasons Hotels CEO Allen Smith and Carpenter & Co. CEO Richard Friedman are scheduled to attend the 6 p.m. ceremony. High-intensity lights will be beamed into the sky to simulate the height of the tower, the tallest building constructed in New England since the John Hancock Tower.
The project is being designed by Harry Cobb of Pei Cobb Freed, along with Gary Johnson of Cambridge 7 Assoc.
Marsh Properties, Inc.