The former Salesian Boys & Girls Club building on Paris Street was a sanctuary for neighborhood children and oasis for working parents for decades. The club was a place where Eastie parents could send their kids and know they were in a safe environment and thriving.
When the Boys & Girls Club moved up to Orient Heights over a decade ago the building laid dormant, but a new project will ensure that the Paris Street building will be reactivated and once again assist Eastie families in a different capacity.
Mayor Martin Walsh joined the East Boston Community Development Corporation (CDC), residents and local elected officials to celebrate the ribbon-cutting for Paris Village last Tuesday.
Paris Village is a $14 million residential community that features 32 affordable apartments for working families in Eastie. The new apartment building will be located on the former Salesian Boys & Girls Club site on Paris Street in the heart of the neighborhood.
“As demand for housing is increasing in East Boston and throughout the City, we’re using all kinds of tools and resources to build new housing,” said Mayor Walsh. “We’ll continue to keep affordability at the heart of our work to make sure people can continue to live and work in the communities they love. I want to thank our many partners for making Paris Village possible, allowing new generations to live and raise their families here.”
Paris Village is located in one of Boston’s fastest growing neighborhoods, near restaurants and a variety of arts, cultural and outdoor amenities and activities. The development will feature 32 new transit-oriented apartments located close to the MBTA blue line, downtown Boston and Logan International Airport. All of the new apartments will be rented to individuals who are earning at or below 60 percent of the area median income (AMI), with four of the families earning 30 percent of AMI or below.
Paris Village has 21 two-bedroom and 11 three-bedroom family units, an elevator for accessibility, central air, on-site laundry facility, a large community space for programming for residents on the ground floor, a rear courtyard and playground with a play structure for children.
“We are extremely grateful to Mayor Walsh for providing and supporting the programs and resources needed to rescue families from homeless shelters and to provide affordable housing for families struggling with increasing rental costs,” said Albert Caldarelli, president and executive director of the East Boston Community Development Corporation.
In accordance with the City of Boston’s Green Affordable HousingProgram, Paris Village utilizes high-efficiency heating and cooling systems as well as Energy Star rated appliances and environmentally friendly design features. The building earned the distinction of being LEED-Homes “Silver” certified by the U.S. Green Building Council. The development also met the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star standards.
Paris Village has been made possible in part by a contribution of almost $2 million from the City of Boston, as well as $2.1 million from the State’s Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) and the Affordable Housing Trust.
“As a long-time resident and tenant of East Boston CDC I am grateful for help we’ve received from City of Boston. Because of your assistance me and my family have the opportunity to reside in a nice apartment,” said East Boston resident Blanca Ayala. “I am also grateful that I was invited to sit on the Board of Directors of EBCDC, Inc. As a Board Member, I have the opportunity to have a say in all of the decisions that affect my tenancy and the close to 1,000 other tenants in our buildings. In my role I also have a chance to work with the CDC and the Mayor of Boston to implement all of the housing initiatives the City supports.”